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Posts Tagged ‘porn’

Daughters in porn

This is a year past topical, as will many things be that I finally get around to blogging about, but it’s still relevant.

There are major problems and concerns with the porn industry, which better feminists than I continue to articulate all over the interwebs. People who work in that field but may not feel thrilled about it may need our support; it’s a riper area than many for exploitation, and the cultural context and gendered expectations should be borne in mind when considering the nature of anyone’s voluntary decision to be involved in sex work of any kind.

But fuck, if somebody likes their job, try being happy for them even if you find sex icky, and if somebody doesn’t like their job, maybe have some sympathy for them as an individual without generalising broadly about everyone working in the entire industry?

Be proud of your daughter even if she does porn. Be proud of your daughter because she does porn. Just love your kids and stop judging sex workers, dude.

(Incidentally, although it’s broadly not a bad article, a major oversight means that the headline is completely untrue. Many sex workers are not somebody’s daughter. Five bonus lateral thinking points if you can figure out how this is so. Wait, scratch that; negative ten basic reasoning points if you can’t.)

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In India, two politicians resigned recently after being caught watching porn on a smartphone during some official parliament business.

To be honest, this seems like one of the less harmful things that conservative lawmakers could be doing with their time, but I can understand there being a certain expectation that they pay more attention to the task in hand (har har).

However, some people seem to be upset for the wrong reasons. A minister from an opposing political party said:

We live in a country where there already is this social mindset that women are disposable commodities and are seen as transferable properties.

It really is troubling that the people who are in positions of power and have the responsibility to change things actually have the same mindset and are busy watching porn.

Which implies a couple of things. Firstly, that it wouldn’t have been a problem if the porn they’d been watching were somehow empowering to women, or perhaps didn’t feature women at all. And secondly, that it still would have been “troubling” to learn that people in positions of power watch porn in private, on their own time.

The idea that any sexual interest which deviates even slightly from the mainstream and “acceptable” inevitably influences every other aspect of a person’s life is a persistent and wrong-headed one, which anyone gay or kinky has had to deal with for years. The fact that these people were distracted by any sort of pornography during work hours only speaks to the lack of engagement they were feeling with their job at that moment. They might has well have been catching up with that latest episodes of Glee. Either way, they’re not exactly employing their “responsibility to change things”.

But then, I’m coming at this from a comfortably western, sex-positive perspective. The last paragraph of the Reuters article reads:

Girls and women in largely patriarchal India face a barrage of threats including rape, dowry-related murder, forced marriage, domestic violence, honor killings and human trafficking.

So, yeah. Maybe the casual injection of sex and sexism into everyday public life is something to be more concerned about.

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