A cuckold enjoying his play.
A cuckold enjoying his play. Efenzi/Getty Images

On Thursday, CNN posted an article about a recent study published in the journal Archives of Sexual Behavior that was co-written by sexperts Justin Lehmiller and David Ley, as well as Stranger puppet master Dan Savage. The study, entitled "The Psychology of Gay Men’s Cuckolding Fantasies," surveyed a large sample of predominately gay men about their cuckolding fantasies and compared the results to previous research done on heterosexual men’s cuckolding fantasies.

Cuckolding, for the uninitiated, historically refers to being cheated on, so a "cuckold," in straight land, is a husband whose wife has been stepping out. While this may sound like your own personal nightmare, it's also a fetish, and some cuckolds are complicit in their partner's "cheating" because they get off on it. (A cuckold is not to be confused with a "cuck," internet slang for "a man who's a little bitch," according to Urban Dictionary. The term "cuck" is most frequently splattered all over the internet by Pepe-loving MAGA bros.)

Here's what Ian Kerner, the author of the CNN post, wrote about the study, in part:

The numbers suggest that cuckolding, or at least thinking about it, is more common than you might imagine. For his forthcoming book, "Tell Me What You Want: The Science of Sexual Desire and How It Can Help Improve Your Sex Life," Lehmiller surveyed thousands of Americans and found that 58% of men and about a third of women had fantasized about cuckolding.

"Men are more likely to fantasize about cuckolding, and they do it more often — but there are a number of women who have these fantasies as well, which points to the need for more research focused on women's cuckolding desires," Lehmiller said.

Pretty straightforward, right? I mean, it's CNN, and not say... InfoWars.

However, after the CNN post went up, Paul Joseph Watson, an editor at Alex Jones's conspiracy-peddling media company InfoWars and a frequent critic of Islam, feminism, and lefty politics, tweeted a screenshot (but not the actual link) to the CNN piece. His followers proceed to use their incredible brain power to slam CNN's reporting, such as in this masterful tweet: "CNN = Cuckhold [sic] News Network."

But then Ley, who had never heard of Paul Joseph Watson, wrote back:

HA! Ten points to Ley for the sick burn, which, he told Gizmodo, wasn't actually burn at all, but is simply the truth: People who publicly decry sexual acts, sometimes secretly want them (see: anti-gay politicians Larry Craig, Randy Boehning, George Rekers, Troy King, Richard Curtis, David Dreier, Ed Schrock, and, of course, Pastor Ted Haggard. The list, by the way, is far longer than this.)

"The research indicates that it is extremely likely that many of his followers enjoy this sexual fantasy," Ley told Gizmodo. "I always get sad and concerned when I see people publicly shaming healthy, normative sexual fantasies and behaviors. Hopefully by opening this dialogue, some of his followers might feel less shame and concern about their fantasies." (Ley, a clinical psychologist and sex therapist, is, I believe, correct, but while there's nothing wrong with being a willing cuckold, there is something deeply wrong with believing InfoWars, and that is what Watson's followers should feel shame about.)

The battle escalated when the conservative tabloid the Daily Caller picked up the story, writing:

Apparently some over at CNN think the concept of a man’s partner sleeping around with other men might have “positive” effects on some couples.

The claim is based off a recent study by David Ley, Justin Lehmiller, and the writer Dan Savage, a deviant and social deconstructionist of the highest order. In it, the authors find that “acting on cuckolding fantasies can be a largely positive experience for many couples, and hardly a sign of weakness,” according to CNN. [...]

And then, the coup de grâce: "CNN is willing to encourage any sexual practice, no matter how depraved."

Yes, CNN, that bastion of sexual hedonism, is well-known for their after-hours key parties. Don't you know why they call him Wolf Blitzer? It could be the name he was born with, or it could be all that doggy style.

Fox and Breitbart picked up the story as well, but the study authors seem more amused than afraid. For his part, Ley says, "Who knew they might be so sensitive over this?" And one of them, the deviant and social deconstructionist in our midst, is embracing it.