8 Reasons You Shouldn’t Blame Porn

The other day I posted a thread regarding an attack on porn from a person who appeared to be a fellow sexuality professional. While I suspected my followers would be in unanimous agreement about the ridiculousness of scapegoating porn for society’s ill treatment of its relationship to sexuality, I was vastly disappointed.
In posting that thread I assumed everyone had gotten the memo. It appears everyone had not.
So let’s go over the reasons why it is intolerable to single out the entire porn industry as a scapegoat for society’s failures in its sexual health, treatment of women, sex education, compulsive behavioral problems, and parenting:
1. Porn is created so that people will buy it. Like all businesses it is based in a supply and demand economy. If nobody’s jerking off to it, it won’t get made. To pretend that porn is pushing an agenda of sexual violence on innocent and impressionable vanilla humans is to forget who porn is created for in the first place. As performer Conner Habib says, “You don’t change culture by telling people their consensual sexual fantasies are wrong or interrogating those desires into silence because they violate your political views. It doesn’t work; the desires will always win out.” (See also: the folly of “end demand” rhetoric in regard to sex work.)
2. Porn is designed for people above the age of 18. True, many teenagers somehow find access to porn. Porn is not going to parent your children for you. It is not going to install net nanny controls on your computer, it is not going to teach your child about sexual health in a positive manner. Because that’s not porn’s job; it’s yours. But it’s easier to attack porn than it is to have a frank conversation with your children about sex.
3. Porn is not sex ed. The Fast and the Furious movies aren’t made to teach you how to drive. Don’t complain about porn informing ill sexual ideals in society; complain about society looking to porn for sex ed because it can’t access it anywhere else. (My friend Ani Easton Baker is currently creating a documentary about this problem.) If you’re horrified by some of the content you’ve seen in porn, see #1, and start to look at things like patriarchal conditioning and toxic masculinity that might condition the desires you find unseemly (even though over half of women report having fantasies about things like non-consent). Do not expect porn to educate people about sex, and do not make porn your scapegoat for the lack of sufficient sex education in America.
4. Porn is not responsible for your boyfriend’s/husband’s/partner’s behavior. Alcohol is also not responsible for people’s behavior but it’s easier to hate a young attractive female performer than a bottle. If your relationship is suffering due to your partner’s porn habits, allow me to suggest that your partner’s porn habits may be due to the fact that your relationship is suffering, or that your partner has intimacy issues that wouldn’t be solved by porn disappearing. Many marriages suffer due to a husband’s golf habit but I don’t see anyone attacking Tiger Woods. You and your partner are both responsible for your habits of consumption and the ways you connect sexually and emotionally with each other.
5. Porn performers and producers face huge stigma in society. There are support groups out there for performers to be able to find careers after porn. Performers are the subject of immense targeting and violence online due to the shame and rage of a large portion of their audience. Many people aren’t secure enough to consider serious relationships with them but will still try fuck with them anyway due to their repressed lust.  THEY DO NOT NEED YOU ADDING FUEL TO THE FIRE. And if you are already working elsewhere in the realm of sexuality, double shame on you, because you should know this already. Porn performers make ENORMOUS sacrifices to do the work that they do.
6. The porn industry is already under attack from legislation. Maybe you didn’t see the tireless efforts that performers/producers made getting up at 4am to get on a bus to speak before Cal/OSHA to protest Measure B, a piece of legislation that would have allowed civilians to sue producers and win money if the performers were not all wearing condoms at all times. This means a performer could be sued by ANYONE for uploading content of themselves and their monogamous partner having unprotected sex – doubly frightening when you consider how rageful people love harassing performers to begin with (see #5). Yes, you read that right – and that’s just one bill of many proposed to  curtail porn production. http://www.latimes.com/local/lanow/la-me-ln-in-lawsuit-condoms-porn-settlement-20160128-story.html
7. Porn performers/producers are at risk at any point of having their bank accounts, PayPal accounts, and Patreon accounts frozen with no warning, with no way to access their funds. This scare has gone so deep that PayPal has even frozen the funds of a BURLESQUE PERFORMER. I had my own Patreon frozen last month and I am not even an adult content producer (they reopened it when I inquired, providing no explanation for why it was shut down in the first place). The DOJ have a program in place for this called, no joke, Operation Choke Point. For more on that, here: https://reason.com/blog/2014/04/28/doj-operation-chokepoint-and-porn-stars
8. In addition to having their financial accounts frozen, porn performers/producers have trouble bringing their work to any sites due to those platforms’ fears of adult content, even if the content they are posting is not actually adult (eg, censored instagram photos to advertise paid membership clips). This is not getting better – with the advent of SESTA/FOSTA, it is getting worse. If you work in the field of sexuality in any manner whatsoever, you should be afraid. And you should be defending the porn industry’s right to exist, because it’s always the marginalized fringe that the fascists come for first to see what they can get away with, and it will be you they come for next.
Back to Conner Habib:
“This is how this will happen:
First, eliminate escorting sites.
Then, eliminate porn.
Then institutionalize trans people.
Then instigate violence against gays/lesbians.
Then, overturn abortion rights.
Then, repeal domestic abuse laws.
Then… Wait, do I need to keep listing?”
This doesn’t mean that all porn is beyond reproach. If you wish to reform porn, call out studios that treat performers unethically, that do not provide sufficient on-set safety, that do not pay performers fairly, that manipulate or flat out violate performers’ consent during filming, that do not have diverse hiring practices. Make your own porn that depicts the sexuality you want to see in the world. Then you’ll be an indie porn producer too and you’ll see how fucking difficult it is to do the work you want to do and just exist without people stigmatizing you.
I am not here to debate any of this, and any bigoted, SWERFist, or scapegoating comments will be immediately deleted and you will be immediately blocked from my page. I am writing this to give those of you who previously held anti-porn sentiments the benefit of the doubt that you were operating under ignorance rather than hatred. Now that you know, you have no further excuse.
Thank you for listening.
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