For those of you who don’t speak Internet, the title translates into “Oh no, the porn!”
Ah, the Internet. The information superhighway, bringing nirvana to information junkies everywhere–and also where one can find every possible sexual fetish with a few clicks of the mouse. Because of cheap and effective electronics, the door has been opened to do-it-yourself porn, where ordinary suburban couples take pictures of themselves having sex. As Robert Parker once wrote, “How sad that this amazing technology is primarily used to convey naked pictures of ugly people.” Of course, porn is tops on the list of Things From Which We Must Protect The Children. A couple of years ago a woman named Donna Hughes spoke in Richmond, wailing about how we must protect children from this terrible scourge to “preserve their innocence.” What’s hilarious about this is that Donna Hughes’ full name is Donna Rice Hughes. As in Donna Rice, who nearly single-handedly destroyed Colorado senator/presidential candidate Gary Hart’s career by having an affair with him and being photographed sitting on his lap on a boat appropriately named “Monkey Business” back in the eighties (because men in power NEVER use that power to score hot chicks, you know). But Donna has found Jesus now. You have to ask if she started this so her kids wouldn’t do a Google search.
Pictures of people having sex goes back to caveman days. It’s a matter of personal taste, since everyone has different things that turn them on. It’s often said that porn is degrading to women, even though it’s one of the few fields where women get paid more than men for doing less work. If you cruise around on porn sites though, see how often the women are referred to as “sluts”, “whores” or “bitches.” The whore/madonna complex is alive and well since a lot of these sites feature “good girls gone bad.” They go hand-in-hand with the fundies in implying that if a woman enjoys sex and is uninhibited, there is something wrong with her. I have read blogs written by supposedly “liberated” women where their lovers call them these names … and they take them as endearments, proof that they can satisfy their man’s wildest fantasies. To me, it’s just disrespect for a woman’s sexuality and as wrong to do as to tell a girl that “nice girls don’t (insert sex act of your choice).”
Every kid has happened upon porn, and the vast majority don’t seem to have been scarred for life by the experience. My dad ran a video home-delivery service out of our house for a little while when I was about fifteen, and out of the stock he got literally 40 percent porn tapes. Needless to say, our house was the place to be that summer when Dad was away and our living room rang with the delightfully scandalized shrieks of teenage girls as “Debbie Does Dallas” or “Swedish Erotica Volume 17″ rolled on the VCR. But it didn’t take long for us to realize that … well, the vast majority of porn is pretty boring. There are only so many orifices that can have things inserted into them, so many positions. And, like all formerly forbidden fruit, when it stopped being forbidden, it stopped being interesting. It’s only when parents don’t provide kids with access to accurate sex ed that porn wobbles (thrusts? gyrates?) into problemland. Which is, of course, why your average fundie will claim to have a porn or sex addiction when caught looking at porn–because the average fundie reaction to the sight of a naked woman or an erect penis is OMGWTFBBQ OH TEH SIN GOD WILL STRIKE YOU DOWN ooh she’s pretty that’s hot OH I HAVE SINNED I AM A SEX ADDICT AND CANNOT HELP MYSELF!!!!11!
Porn or sex only becomes a problem if you’re skipping work to because it’s new video day on bangbus.com or if you’re ignoring your willing spouse in favor of a constant turnover of fresh meat. Seriously, if you want the buffet don’t get the prix fixe menu. It’s okay not to be married, not to have a signficant other, to be gay, to be straight, to go both ways. Protect yourself and don’t mess with kids and be the cause of someone’s lifelong trauma. A friend of mine, who found his fifteen-year-old son on the Bang Bus site, took a very good approach–he sat down with him (which for many teens would have been punishment enough) and explained that he didn’t have a problem with him looking at naked women or people having sex, but he did have a problem with him looking at sites that degraded women. “No matter how they seem to be acting, that’s someone’s daughter or sister,” he said. “You have sisters. Would you want them treated like that?” And it resulted in a pretty open talk between them, which is how it should be.
Yes, female-respecting porn does exist. No, I’m not going to tell you my favorite sites. ;) In all seriousness, though, people should not learn about sex from porn–or from so-called “crusaders” saying that seeing a female nipple will turn a kid into a pervert.