Pop Culture

Gene Simmons stands by controversial comments on women: 'I'm not saying life is fair'

Gene Simmons believes that women can either "wear a potato sack" or use their sexuality instead to gain power in the world.

The always-outspoken KISS bassist and reality television star was asked by Hoda Kotb and Kathie Lee Gifford on TODAY Tuesday about recent comments to the New York Post regarding women being able to use their looks to get ahead.

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Gene Simmons talks about his new book, 'On Power'

Play Video - 5:42

Gene Simmons talks about his new book, 'On Power'

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"Women have a choice," he told the Post. "They can dress in potato sacks, (but) as soon as they pretty themselves up with lipstick, lift and separate them and point them in our general direction, they’re gonna get a response. Guys are jackasses — we will buy them mansions and houses...all because of sex."

Hoda and Kathie Lee asked him to explain that notion.

"Here's the reality,'' he told them. "I am aware of the rules. I didn't create them, so you can try this yourself. I'm not saying life is fair. What I'm saying is the male of the species is visually stimulated.

"That's life, and so you have power, the power of being a female, and you can access that power to make more money."

Simmons, 68, writes in his new book, "On Power," that the best route to influence for women is using their appearance, which Hoda and Kathie Lee disputed.

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Gene Simmons of KISS talks about new box set of unreleased songs

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Gene Simmons of KISS talks about new box set of unreleased songs

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"What I'm pointing out is your looks, how you dress, how you present yourself is an outreach, an extension of the power you have,'' he said. "We can't do that. Men can't do that. We have to build skyscrapers and thereby try be more attractive to you.

"Your actual female self is your power, so you have a choice of implementing that power, that's up to you."

Simmons also told the New York Post that women need to "get over your biological urges" and choose between having a family and a career because trying to do both is too difficult.

The KISS guitarist also gave his take on the allegations of rape, sexual assault and sexual harassment against prominent figures like Harvey Weinstein and Kevin Spacey.

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KISS controversy: Can Gene Simmons trademark a hand gesture?

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KISS controversy: Can Gene Simmons trademark a hand gesture?

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"I want all the jackasses to go to jail for being improper,'' he said. "It's just that woman have finally stood up on their two hind legs and said, 'You only get the respect you demand.'"

Simmons, who has two children, Nick, 28, and Sophie, 25, with wife Shannon Tweed, is encouraged by women speaking out.

"I have a daughter, Sophie, she's nobody's girlfriend,'' he said. "She has a boyfriend. It's time for women to stand up, take charge. Half the world's population is female, (and they're saying) you're gonna treat us equally or else."

Follow TODAY.com writer Scott Stump on Twitter.

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