International Women’s Day: Abortion Rights & Anti-Porn Protests


In light of the continuing Christian fascist assault on women

Support International Women’s Day, Protest and Car Caravan throughout Los Angeles

12 Noon – Rally at Her Clinic, 2502 S Figueroa St. (& Adams)
Support abortion providers. March 10th is Abortion Provider Appreciation Day! Oppose the anti-woman, anti-abortion picketers who harass women at this clinic. 2011 saw the largest spate of legal restrictions on abortion since Roe v. Wade in 1973. ALL THIS MUST BE STOPPED! Fetuses are not babies. Women are not incubators. Abortion is not murder.
2 PM – The Archdiocese of Los Angeles, 3424 Wilshire Blvd. (1 block east of Normandie) The Catholic Church’s approach to women, gender, science and sexuality – like that of many religions – is a Dark Ages disaster! The Pope has condemned condoms (causing millions of HIV/AIDs deaths). The Church condemns homosexuality and insists that “divorce is a sin” (contributing to women staying in abusive marriages). Recently, Catholic Bishops urged “non-compliance” with new regulations requiring health insurance to cover birth control!
4 PM - Hustler Store, 8920 W. Sunset Blvd., West Hollywood.
Stop the brutality against women in the name of free speech! In recent years, pornography has become increasingly violent, cruel, degrading towards women; women are referred to as “cumdumpsters” and “fuckbuckets”; the “money shot” (ejaculation in a woman’s face) is standard; humiliating cruelty-like violent “ass-to-mouth” penetration-is normalized, and racist bigotry is sexualized. Meanwhile, the broader culture has been pornified: pole dancing is taught at gyms, “sexting” is a national phenomenon among teens, and the strip club is the accepted backdrop to “male bonding.” All this is tied in with, and reinforces, the trafficking of millions of women and girls as literal chattel in the international sex industry. This is NOT society becoming more comfortable with sex. This is society becoming saturated with the sexualized degradation of women. Women are not objects. Women are not things to be used for the sexual pleasure of men NOR are they breeders of children. WOMEN ARE HUMAN BEINGS CAPABLE OF FULL EQUALITY IN EVERY REALM!
Read more here.

Comments

  1. says

    I really do not approve of the rhetorical link between porn and human trafficking. There’s a lot of overlap between the two, of course, but they’re two very separate issues; and linking them only trivializes the most evil of the two, which is human trafficking. (And no, not all human trafficking is related to the sex biz; some of it, in fact, is more closely related to globalized trade and our relentless pursuit of the cheapest goods possible.)

    Also, it needs to be understood that not all sex-workers are in the business against their will. Ignoring this fact only hurts the sex-workers, by treating them as people who can’t decide anything for themselves.

    • says

      oh really? Tell me what this scenario is:

      A woman agrees over the phone to shoot a pornographic movie because she needs money. She makes a deal to do certain acts for a certain price. She pays for a ticket to california to shoot the movie, knowing that the fee she will be getting will more than cover the ticket (and the trip back), with plenty left over.

      She arrives and the producers inform her that she won’t be doing the scene she agreed to over the phone, she will be doing much more, and with more performers than previously discussed.

      When she objects they threaten to pay her nothing, leaving her with no way to get back. She agrees to do the movie because she is out of other options.

      This meets the definition of trafficking, and it happens in USA pornography.

      This happened to a woman, who was infected with HIV on that shoot. Her porn name was Lara Roxx, if you wanna look it up. She was cast with a performer who had just gotten back from brazil and contracted HIV there. It was her first movie.

      It is difficult for me to believe that her story was the only time that producers have leveraged a woman’s financial situation to get her to agree to more than she otherwise would.

      • says

        Do you have a source for this? I’m fairly familiar with the Lara Roxx story and never heard that background for it, not that I find it implausible because I am familiar with similar things happening to other performers. It should be noted that this incident is the only ase of someone being infected with HIV in the US porn industry since moderns screening procedures were implemented. The industry also didn’t throw her out on the street, but gave her non-sex employment.

        Bait-and-switches on performer agreements seem to be the main unethical practice in US porn today. It’s far from universal, but everyone I know of who works in porn has at least heard of such things. This is why union oversight is important.

  2. says

    Here’s another view on whether or not porn is degrading or objectifying to women (from Greta Christina):

    Namazie says: ‘What with Islamism and the religious right being obsessed with women’s bodies and demanding that we be veiled, bound, and gagged, nudity breaks taboos and is an important form of resistance.’

  3. QuantumPwnage says

    Is gay porn anti women too? so then is it ok or not to watch gay porn then. whenever the whole “porn is anti women” thing comes up gay porn is always forgotten. side comment, ass to mouth is indeed gross, and unsanitary. DOWN WITH ASS TO MOUTH!

    • says

      Well, I’m sure there are plenty of homophobes who would be happy to tell you that gay porn is anti-gay-men.

      That’s what’s so despicable about so many anti-porn activists: they’re trying to blame porn for problems that they themselves are part of.

    • julian says

      On many sites and in many videos it is the humiliation that makes the act enticing (follow the comments under the videos and you see it even better.)

      Much of today’s porn (and I imagine past porn) plays off (like the OP points out) racial stereotypes (for example, asian women being subservient to their white masters), non-consent/punishment sex fantasies (ass-fucking the meter maid who gave you a ticket, your bitch ex girlfriend who spent to much of your money) and humiliations (for example, sites where the backstory is women hazing and denigrating other women.)

      If you want to argue those are all perfectly valid expressions of sexuality, please do so. With the incredible amount of variety in human sexuality it may be worth discussing. But this bullshit ‘you’re all just evil stuck up ebil prunes!!!111!’ is what really kills these conversations.

      • blackskeptics says

        Absolutely. This idea that embracing porn is inherently liberatory and critiquing/deconstructing it is Victorian/conservative/prudishness is yet another example of how Eurocentric ahistorical pro-porn perspectives get mainstreamed as “feminist.” Black feminist writers like Patricia Hill Collins and bell hooks have unpacked how the pornographic gaze emerged from colonial/slave era display of black bodies as the hyper-sexual available savage irrational Other — antithesis of the proper, virginal, innocent white feminine body. Recent black feminist critiques of Slut walk have highlighted how the Western dichotomy of virgin/jezebel (always grounded in the hyper-sexualized bodies of women of African descent) make claiming the slut “positionality” as liberatory problematic for women of color because they are always already coded as the “fallen” pornographically available sexual other to the white woman as feminine ideal and symbol of civilization. In contemporary American pop culture where black and Latina women are either the bad bitch “ho” or the mammy domestic, pornography and racial commodification are deeply intertwined. From elementary to high school young girls of color are literally immersed in a violent porn culture that cements their cultural objectification via music lyrics, TV shows, films and Internet media that specifically endorse rape and assault of black women as an accepted social norm; contributing to the epidemic of intimate partner violence and sexual assault amongst black women (who have some of the highest rates of both amongst all racial groups in the U.S).

        • Pikachu says

          “Absolutely. This idea that embracing porn is inherently liberatory and critiquing/deconstructing it is Victorian/conservative/prudishness is yet another example of how Eurocentric ahistorical pro-porn perspectives get mainstreamed as “feminist.” Black feminist writers like Patricia Hill Collins and bell hooks have unpacked how the pornographic gaze emerged from colonial/slave era display of black bodies as the hyper-sexual available savage irrational Other — antithesis of the proper, virginal, innocent white feminine body.”

          No, this is yet another example of how Eurocentric ahistorical anti-porn perspectives get mainstreamed as “feminist.”The claim that most porn is filled with violence is a myth perpetuated by the anti-sex worker movement which is a collaboration of radical feminist and the religious right. The anti-porn movement is part of a larger movement that is anti-sex work and is one of the most racist, sexist, and colonialist movements in the world today. This is a list of some of the most powerful and influential organizations in the movement.

          http://www.swaay.org/opposition.html

          Most of them have no credibility but they manage to perpetuate their cause by lobbying for government funding and producing pseudo-scientific research. Many of their claims have been repeatedly debunked by the scientist.

          http://departments.columbian.gwu.edu/sociology/sites/default/files/u10/Weitzer%20porn%20review.pdf

          http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=%22the%20social%20construction%20of%20sex%20trafficking%22&source=web&cd=1&ved=0CCMQFjAA&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww2.law.columbia.edu%2Ffaculty_franke%2FGender_Justice%2F2007%2520Politics%2520Society%2520Weitzer.pdf&ei=KUJaT5ruAe2CsgKM3cGyDQ&usg=AFQjCNEk3E-PSrcOeMwSJCr9nC8Mz15OBA&cad=rja
          http://www.hrw.org/news/2010/07/20/cambodia-sex-workers-face-unlawful-arrests-and-detention

          Also the claim that porn somehow originated from the enslavement of black women is an obvious myth and revisionist history. There is recorded evidence of sexually explicit material made to arouse in nearly every civilization in the world.

          http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_erotic_depictions

          http://www.swaay.org/porn.html

          http://books.google.com/books/about/Governing_pleasures.html?id=c52wQgAACAAJ

          It certainly isn’t something that originated from slavery.
          Besides promoting myths about porn the anti-sex worker movement is responsible for many horrible human rights violations against world wide such as the unwarranted arrest and persecution of sex workers. In the united states they have successfully lobbied the government to create laws that prevent non-governmental organizations from receiving foreign aid unless they oppose prostitution and this only further serves the oppression of sex workers. Not only that but their actions have also caused the arrest and persecution sex workers world wide.

          http://www.hrw.org/news/2010/07/20/cambodia-sex-workers-face-unlawful-arrests-and-detention

          • blackskeptics says

            So feminists of color like Collins, hooks, and myself who actually work with young high school women of color on the intersection of racist pornography and the violent commodification of black and Latina women’s bodies are colluding with the religious right now? Thanks for the paternalistic clarification. While you fixate on the rights of sex workers (which was not the subject of the o.g. response to begin with) I see no substantive engagement with the impact of the mainstreaming of porn and pornographic imagery on the way black and Latina women who are not sex workers are treated in their everyday lives on school campuses, in their communities, and in the public sphere in general. I’m assuming this is because, like most people who trot out the tired ahistorical caricature that porn is the gateway to freedom, that you have no direct experience to draw from vis-a-vis the realities of American girls of color. Porn as a regime of market power versus a pro-sex position as a function of normal human desire, pleasure and agency are not synonymous. Each culture has a historically contextualized relationship to it that is deeply informed by relations of class, race, gender and geopolitics. The bodies of women of color have always been constructed via the pornographic gaze of white supremacist commodification and market control. Obviously you did not read the post because there was no claim that the porn industry emerged from slavery. Carefully read the post and the response, then do some reading and research on black feminist critique of the pornographic gaze before you make totalizing claims like the one above.

          • julian says

            For the love of the non-existent Jesus.

            What porn sites do you visit? How many do you know? When was the last time you watched porn? Do you who consumes the most porn here in the U.S.? Do you know what the most popular and mainstream porn sites are?

  4. says

    In recent years, pornography has become increasingly violent, cruel, degrading towards women.

    Is this actually true? I don’t dispute that there is a lot of degrading porn out there, but trying to characterize porn as a whole as if it were one thing with one audience is rather useless. Even if the market share for degrading porn were increasing, this doesn’t say anything about porn per se. Besides, I’m pretty sure it isn’t true. Disco Dolls in Hot Skin, from 1977, has a rape and murder in it. Rape in general was common in 1970s porn. It’s pretty much unheard of, even in degradation-themed titles now.

    • julian says

      It’s pretty much unheard of, even in degradation-themed titles now.

      No it isn’t. What you mean to say is it’s never referred to as rape in the video or in the title. It’s always ‘Dumb blond gets what she deserves’ or something similar. Rape, non-consent and ‘forced sex’ fantasies still litter the landscapes of much of porn just here in the U.S.

      Elsewhere (particularly Japanese and Eastern European titles) it’s impossible to go two steps without bumping into a rape fantasy of some kind.

      • says

        I don’t know much about the Japanese or European markets. Form what I’ve heard about Japan, you’re right, but that could also just be stereotyping as far as I know, like when people try to act like naughty tentacles are the only kind of anime and all Japanese game show are about humiliating the contestants.

        As far as the US goes, I’m curious as to what you mean. Granted, my friends who’ve worked in porn stores worked in Iowa City, which is a liberal Midwestern college town whose tastes may not reflect the US as a whole, but I don’t think that’s non-consent is very popular. If any of the current top titles on AVN or Adult DVD Talk have non-consent material, it isn’t obvious from the cover or title and hiding such content seems counterproductive when you’re trying to pander to an audience that wants it.

        • julian says

          but that could also just be stereotyping as far as I know

          It isn’t. Japanese porn tends to be pretty varied but you’d be hard pressed to find an adult film actress who hasn’t done more than a few rape videos. They’re a big part of the market.

          my friends who’ve worked in porn stores worked in Iowa City,

          I never worked at a porn shop. Most of my experience with porn comes from sites like Brazzers, BangBros, a few other ‘specialty’ sites (maid, latina, asian ect.) and interacting with the communities that post on them. The themes, particularly when the site is devoted to race, always carry some sort of racist undertones.

          For example, an (old, maybe 5 or 6 years) video from MrChewsAsianBeaver, where in the intro the actresses was asked what about Asian women made them so hot. Her response was “Because our pussies are so tight and they stay that way.” The cameraman followed by asking if knowing their place also had something to do with it. She replies (paraphrasing here) “Well, it’s just that the man is the backbone and we’re supposed to be the support for the backbone.”

          And that was hardly a unique case to that site or to sites devoted to Asian women in general. In one site it was common to begin the pre-sex talk by asking the actress if she’d ever had white American cock before. Feigned accents were pretty popular on that one.

          I can understand if you want to argue that these are all valid expressions of sexuality and that it would be wrong to chastise people for having these fantasies, but pretending they don’t exist is ridiculous.

          The body types you see in mainstream porn are quite different from what you see in fashion modelling and more diverse.

          They are certainly different from what you see in modelling but are you trying to imply they’re either a healthy representation of body types or that they are very varied?

          A man who will demand sex acts his partner doesn’t want will be a problem regardless of where he got the idea for the specific act.

          But you’re missing the point. It is normalized now. He has a cadre of buddies backing him, telling him it’s normal and he has video proof that lots of women do it. He has many more means of pressuring compliance from his partners including an entire industry willing to send the message such women are just being prudish.

          • says

            I’m not saying they aren’t popular. I’m not terribly familiar with Brazzers, but BangBros seemed to represent the fantasy that you could be a complete obnoxious prat without repelling every woman in the vicinity. In fact, they may find it charming. This is really annoying, but not the same as non-consent or violence. I did know one (het) couple who were big fans of the site, but they were both assholes. I figured that was their target market.

            Are these really the most popular sites? I was under the impression that the most popular sites are LiveJasmin and various big conglomerates with no particular theme. Violent material is very much taboo and is explicitly forbidden by the TOS of most hub sites. Racism is a problem, especially with black men and Asian women. Hollywood is the same way, though. The main difference is there’s no Will Smith of porn.

            I’m not disputing that a lot material could be seen as problematic. I’m somewhat torn on whether it actually is problematic because it ends up sounding like “Sex stuff I’m into is great and healthy. Stuff I’m not into is weird and wrong.” It’s theoretically possible this could be true, but it’s also very easy to spurious arguments that confuse preferences with morality. At any rate, my contention is that abuse-themed porn exists and may be marginally mainstream if you accept a broad definition of abuse, but does not define the industry as a whole and is nowhere near a majority of what’s out there.

            BTW, I tried researching this topic for an upcoming blog post and trying to watch porn that does not cater to one’s tastes is frightfully dull. It’s way easier to just mock the commenters, especially the ones who are barely literate, are clearly men pretending to be lesbians or who complain that they aren’t in the target audience. (example: watching porn in the transsexual category, then complaining that the lady has a penis.) Maybe I can come up with something that’s funny and academic.

          • julian says

            Personally I’m sympathetic to the idea that this all within the free expression of one’s sexuality. But (and here’s where I get hung up) many people have less than healthy views about sex, deeply repressed feelings and enjoy the thought of degrading, humiliating and abusing others.

            And some people enjoy being the abused. Everything would be fine except the way it’s always billed seems to be reinforcement of either gender stereotypes or racial stereotypes. And they seem to do it under questionable situations or circumstance. For example, a woman trying to convince her significant other to be the Dom in their relationship being counseled to explain it to him as ‘returning to the natural ways of things.’

            So it’s never as if the sex is just being offered or depicted. There’s a world of social commentary tossed in their too.

            Is it ‘good’ to think the natural state of things is with women beneath men, subservient to them? Is it ‘good’ to view girls stranded by the side of the road and prime targets for soliciting sexual favors from (check out the numerous HitchHiker sites and videos out there. the fantasies are almost never you two click and have sex, it’s always the man tricks her into going home and then she can’t leave until she gives it up)?

            If I’m going to object to these depictions in the media or at the pulpit, should I stop when it’s done one a pornographic site?

  5. Hibernia86 says

    In regard to porn, let the women make their own decisions rather than trying to tell them that they are being oppressed and need to stop doing it because you don’t like it.

    • Nepenthe says

      It’s curious. When feminists criticize movements like Quiverfull for their patriarchal oppressiveness and portrayal of women as objects, liberals don’t pile in to whine that women in these movements choose freely to be a part of them and how dare we criticize their choices. After all, some Christian Patriarchy families might be quite loving.

      However, criticize “progressive” men’s treatment of women as objects for fucking and one has committed a grave blasphemy. Cultural forces are seen as clearly coercive in one case, but certainly not in the other. This is also one of the few instances where usually sensible progressives cry “censorship” in the face of criticism, as if pointing out that getting off to images of rape and degradation (explicitly framed as degradation) is fucked up is equivalent to banning all pictures of naked people.

      • says

        I sure do and so do plenty of other people. This was largely the point of Libby Anne’s article about the Duggars.

        Of course, I only apply this to adults. Kids being raised in such a family aren’t being apprised of their option. Also, their religion is still wrong. However, if a woman wants to enter into a marriage where she’s subservient to her husband and stays at home taking care of kids, I have no problem with it, nor do lots of other liberals.

          • says

            That question is so broad as to be meaningless. Women do porn for lots of reasons. Some may base their self-worth entirely on sex (especially if they were abused as children), but porn isn’t really the problem in that case. People in the industry using this fact to manipulate them is, but that’s far from universal. Other women may just like being well-paid for relatively little work, consider it a kind of art or use it to promote their ideas about sexuality.

          • Nepenthe says

            I don’t mean just the option to do porn or not. I mean the option to have heterosexual sex not driven by porn imagery. The option to live in a world where bdsm is taken out of the safe, sane, consensual context and plastered everywhere, sending the message that violence is sex, without the tempering of negotiation or consent. The option to live as a woman of color and/or a lesbian and/or trans woman in a world where the majority of men around her don’t go home and watch videos entitled “Sassy latin slut gets pounded”, “Ebony bitch hurt by big white cock”, and “Sexy lezzies hot for you” and “Shemale surprise”. Are we apprised of those options? No, because they are not options.

          • says

            I would dispute that those are the only kinds of images mainstream porn offers, but would like some clarification. Are you say BDSM and extreme sex acts are fine in a private, consensual setting, but if publicized, create a demand which undermines consent negotiation?

            On a related question, would you still object to the porn industry if output was basically the same as now, but the workforce was unionized with good protections for actors? Degradation porn would still be made in the same volume, but we would know the men and women participating in it enjoyed negotiated exactly what acts they would perform and with who ahead of time and any apparent on-screen suffering was just acting?

          • Nepenthe says

            Yes and yes. Porn doesn’t just affect the performers (and “performers”, as in the status quo). Normalizing the idea that women are objects to which things are done, preferably uncomfortable and degrading things, is bad for every woman who doesn’t think that gagging while she’s throat fucked is a good time and who would like to interact with men who don’t believe that that’s what sex must be. I mean, jesus, we can’t even get porn with condoms, because people won’t buy it. You think porn that includes a negotiation of boundaries at the beginning will sell? (Ironically, the most extreme sadomasochism porn is the only sort that I’ve ever seen that has this emphasis on consent and mutual pleasure.)

            So what if theoretically one can find “good” porn? That’s not what we’re talking about and it’s disingenuous to defend the vast majority–what is popular; what sells–with the minor exceptions. It’s like saying that tigers are great housepets because a few of them are tame; that’s nice, but most of them will happily eat people.

            I notice that you completely ignored my points about racism, lesbophobia, and transmisogyny. It doesn’t matter if the performers in “shemale” and “ebony” and other fetish (because fucking someone who isn’t young, white, cisgender, and thin is a fetish in porn-land) porn are having a grand old time; intent is not magic.

          • says

            I think your claims about weight are a bit overstated. While your average woman in American porn is thinner than your average American woman on the street, she isn’t dangerously thin. The body types you see in mainstream porn are quite different from what you see in fashion modelling and more diverse. Also, due to the nature of video and nudity, there’s less covering up of “flaws.”

            Porn tends to represent an idealized version of sex. That’s why you don’t see much accidentally leaning on people’s hair, slipping out, premature ejaculation, etc outside of blooper reels. People use condoms because they view them as a necessary evil, not because they like them, so they’re mostly out. Porn performers undergo far more STD testing to compensate. Other kinds of entertainment don’t reflect real life, either. I think most of the audience understands this and no more sees porn and thinks that they can walk to the supermarket and talk some soccer mom back to their house than they think they can jump a drawbridge in their car after watching The Blues Brothers.

            My contention is that yes, porn promotes the idea that people are sex objects to a large degree. However, I don’t think there’s anything inherently wrong with being a sex object. The correct view isn’t that people aren’t sex objects, it’s that they aren’t just sex objects. A lot of people understand this. Appreciating someone as a sexual being doesn’t keep one from appreciating them a fellow human being. I think this is my root problem with anti-porn attitudes. The idea that being viewed sexually dehumanizes people is right in line with the virgin/whore dichotomy. The idea viewing sexual images causes rape is right in line with the short-skirt defense. It also serves to push guilt on sex workers like they’re responsible when some jerkass is unhappy his own partner won’t do the things they do. The idea that virtuous women are being undermined and facing unfair competition is the root of woman-originated slut-shaming. This may not be exactly what you are arguing, but that’s what you’re supporting when you promote broad anti-porn ideas without very careful framing. Intent isn’t magic for you, either.

            I’m also curious as to how you are defining mainstream porn. If you think gagging is mainstream and milfs aren’t because they’re a fetish I think you either have an unrealistic view of what’s popular or you are depending on definitions that don’t have a lot of real world significance. I suspect you severely overestimate the popularity of degradation themes. For instance, if you check on Adult DVD Talk, the most popular movies are big-budget comedies like Pirates and Batman XXX. If you run a search, you’ll five times as many titles with “milf” in the title as “gag” and “abuse” combined. (Even this overstates it a lot of the gag and abuse titles are gay whereas milf is a strictly straight/lesbian category.) If you go on the forums, you’ll find Max Hardcore and Lizzy Borden are widely despised as misogynists who make the industry look bad, and this is among people who are so into porn they sit around talking about it on the web. Even most of their defenders tend to lean on “free speech” rather than “I think it’s hot.” That is, even in the most porn-friendly environment, admitting to liking degradation porn is not particularly socially acceptable. Anything that appears to be violent is also banned on most of the popular Internet tube services.

            You seem open to the idea that good porn is possible, exists and is actually available. I’m curious as to what you think a good porn industry would look like both in terms of practices and output. Would it have to present a realistic depiction of sex? Would disclaimers be good enough?

            I wrote about my own views a few days ago here. That was about a fairly specific problem. I’d add that not all customers were like the ones I describe there. I’ve known lots of people in my day who were strippers, hookers and appeared in porn (the term star seems like a bit of a stretch). A couple have been very close friends. I’ve also known plenty of women who liked porn and weren’t involved in the industry. They got sexual ideas from it, too. My former roommate used to complain that his girlfriend kept wanting to do weird stuff she learned about on the Internet. I don’t see why getting sexual ideas from porn is any less legit than getting them from other sources providing that people are safe and consensual in their practices. It’s like getting food ideas from the food network, but being aware of the limitations of your cooking ability and your resources.

            Yes, some men are jerks who don’t respect boundaries, but this has been a problem forever. Porn’s ascent has happened mostly over the last forty years. A man who will demand sex acts his partner doesn’t want will be a problem regardless of where he got the idea for the specific act.

            I think there is plenty of socially irresponsible porn out there, especially when it comes to racial stereotypes and this does have an effect on society (albeit probably dwarfed by the issues that are driving the demand for such material in the first place). I also think exploitation, while not the dominant production method of porn, is a significant problem. However, I think the mainstreaming of porn is actually helping. Non-porn exposure of porn stars makes porn more acceptable, but it also humanizes the performers. Mainstream presentations like DVD special editions help to demystify the process.

            I’m curious as to the message of this protest. If you are trying to urge the industry to make good, responsible porn instead of what they are making now, I’m all for it. There are certainly plenty of problems out there. If the message of the protest is “porn is bad,” then you are just playing into the hands of religious conservatives who want sex to be a dirty secret.

          • says

            Actually, one other question: Whats the difference between saying BDSM is fine, but we shouldn’t publicize it because it will lead to non-consensual bondage ad saying being gay is fine, but you need to keep in on the down-low or it will lead to buggery? The slippery slope isn’t really in evidence.

          • Nepenthe says

            Frankly, if we can’t even agree on the fact that pornographic depictions of race are significantly more overtly racist than freaking Hollywood, then this discussion is pointless. I’d really love to live on your planet. It must be lovely.

          • mynameischeese says

            Aceofsevens,

            “I suspect you severely overestimate the popularity of degradation themes.”

            Nope. It’s mainstream: http://www.xojane.com/sex/feminist-women-with-rape-fantasies

            When you talk about “women getting ideas from porn,” it’s like you’re willing to admit that porn influence behaviour…but only in a good way. Why admit that it influences people positively if you don’t want to talk about how it influences people in a negative way?

          • says

            @Nepenthe. I did overstate that. Mainstream porn has a big racism problem. In the case of black men at least, it’s way worse than Hollywood. For instance, IIRC, no black man has ever won an AVN award and “monster cock” is pretty much the only role in straight porn available. In gay porn, you also have closeted gay gangster. I’d love to see more variety of roles for black men. Why can’t you have a 20-year-old black guy deliver pizza to a sexually aggressive forty-some woman and be initially intimidated, then go with it, for instance? For that matter, why does this woman have to be white? Why are Asian men never seen in US straight porn at all? It’s not like there isn’t a ready supply near Van Nuys. In fact, even if we do limit ourselves to the three roles allowed for Asian men in Hollywood (marshal arts master, restaurant owner, scientist), I can see plenty of potential.

            @mynameischeese. I’m saying there’s nothing wrong with getting ideas from porn and wanting to do them with your partner or partners so long as you respect boundaries and are realistic. People who don’t respect boundaries aren’t going to be any less of a problem if they don’t see porn.

        • julian says

          However, if a woman wants to enter into a marriage where she’s subservient to her husband and stays at home taking care of kids, I have no problem with it, nor do lots of other liberals.

          Now that’s just irresponsible and stupid.

          You object to children being indoctrinated and in the same breadth advocate for protecting the means under which this will happen with almost no ways of protecting them from child abuse (or the spouse for that matter)?

          • says

            I don’t see the connection. How does it keep kids from getting abused if their mom gets a job? Also, it’s quite possible to live in such an arrangement without thinking everyone should or indoctrinating your kids that this is the only proper way to do things.

          • julian says

            Sorry, that was over the top and I should have been more specific. I was referring to families who take after Purity and Quiverfull.

            If someone wants to enter into a marriage as the one who’ll take care of the children and domestic chores well, there’s certainly nothing wrong with that.

  6. says

    Were American women (white or nonwhite) less oppressed or “objectified” back when porn was illegal?

    Are women currently freer in countries where porn is illegal and suppressed than they are in the more porn-friendly West?

    And as for what sort of porn is most “representative” of porn in general, we need to remember that porn doesn’t actively seek out its audience like hungry pirahnas or the Stuxnet worm; YOU have to seek IT, and chances are, you’ll be seeking the kind of porn that reflects your current sexual tastes, and very firmly rejecting anything you find that is contrary to your tastes. If someone is looking at degrading racist porn for longer than one second, it’s because he/she knowingly chose to do so, not because the porn gave him/her desires he/she didn’t already have.

    It’s curious. When feminists criticize movements like Quiverfull for their patriarchal oppressiveness and portrayal of women as objects, liberals don’t pile in to whine that women in these movements choose freely to be a part of them and how dare we criticize their choices.

    There’s nothing “curious” about it at all. Nobody wants to outlaw such movements; we merely want to a) make the public aware of how wrong they are, and b) make sure women have other choices and can avoid such patriarchal crap if they want to. And nobody has to “whine” about free choice because it’s already obvious that some women do indeed choose to live that way.

    Comparing criticism of porn to criticism of patriarchal social/political/religious organizations is ridiculous; they’re two very different issues.

    And women and girls raised in porn-land are apprised of their options?

    If they’re not, that brings us to the issues of abuse, exploitation, corruption of minors, trafficking, etc.; each of which in itself is worse than porn. Let’s keep the issues separate to avoid punishing the innocent, shall we? Exploitation and abuse are wrong regardless of their objective.

  7. says

    In recent years, pornography has become increasingly violent, cruel, degrading towards women.

    “Increasingly” by what measure? The absolute quantity of such publications may have grown, but so has the absolute quantitiy of nearly all other books, magazines, videos and Web publications — including porn that’s not at all violent, cruel, racist or degrading.

  8. says

    There are mice next to the refrigerator, under the sink and inside the cupboard!He came to the point at once.The view is great.The question will be settled tonight.He is just a child.There isn’t any water in the bottle.There isn’t any water in the bottle.Well,it depends.He looks very healthy.The letter “x” stands for an unknown number.

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