I'll be the first to admit that I didn't always have the most progressive mindset. I thought I did: I grew up in blue state Massachusetts, believed wholeheartedly in marriage equality and the right to choice. But, like a good portion of purportedly liberal Massholes, I never did the introspection necessary to see if I actually had said liberal mindset.
(As a sidenote, it blows my mind, the number of people who call themselves liberal in the Boston area but are flagrantly racist, but that's for another time.)
And one of the areas where I was way too conservative for my own good was the idea of women's sexuality. Man, what a slut she is for having one-night stands every Friday night! She is such a whore for dressing that way. Why can't she just find a boyfriend like a good girl.
It took years to realize where my mind was because society has deemed this way of thinking perfectly fine. You can be the most liberal, progressive, bleeding-heart hippie ever and still find women's sexuality taboo. I looked down on Paris Hilton -- not because she was manipulative and self-absorbed in a way that would make Machiavelli blush, but because she would hook up with a lot of dudes.
I found myself essentially pulling a Buddhist monk on top of a mountain with myself. Just a constant stream of, "Why? Why is that so? Why is it that way? Why?" Until I realized that there is absolutely, positively, no reason to have that mindset, aside from the fact that society tells us that women need to be chaste beings.
The older I get, the more socially libertarian I become. If you're not harming other people, have at it. If a woman enjoys sleeping around, so long as she's safe about it and not spreading diseases, have at it. You quickly realize that the taboos have no intrinsic value (especially when you learn that female chimps are actually quite promiscuous, and not "naturally monogamous" like people once believed, debunking that attitude that female chastity is an evolutionary trait).
I once had a conversation with someone about this very subject, about how guys can sleep around and be considered the man, but it's whorish when a woman does it. He replied with, "Well, it's easier for a girl to have sex. She can walk into any bar and be guaranteed at least some type of guy. A guy has to work for it."
And to that I think: man, it must really piss you off that it's so easy for a woman to get laid.
Because that's the only explanation I have for that type of thinking: either it angers/scares you that women can have such power over sex, or you just don't think about what you think about. Because, really, if you want it, and it's easy to come by, when else would you ever be told it's not okay to go forward? Imagine having an ATM that gave you free money whenever you wanted. People would think you were insane if you said, "You know, I'm not going to go near that. I'll play it cool. Make the ATM earn it. I don't want to be seen like a money-slut or something."
Some people might find it funny that I have this mindset when I've been in a relationship for almost 8 years (8 years tomorrow, eek!). But -- crazy idea, I know -- sometimes things don't have to directly affect me for me to care about them.