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How To Stuff A Porn Panic: The Official Op-Ed AGAINST Measure B

from http://bppa.blogspot.com/2012/09/how-to-stuff-porn-panic-official-op-ed.html
by Anthony Kennerson

How To Stuff A Porn Panic: The Official Op-Ed AGAINST Measure B In Los Angeles County
I’m sure that it will come to no surprise to you that this blog — BPPA — has been strongly opposed to all attempts to impose the condom mandate on porn….and we will apply that same principle to our continuous, steady and consistent opposition to Measure B, the proposed referendum that would impose the condom mandate onto Los Angeles County.

Just as this blog will equally and with the same intensity oppose the already passed condom mandate law now in effect in the city of Los Angeles, and which, if the forces of Cal-OSHA and the AIDS Healthcare Foundation have their way, would be imposed not only in Los Angeles, but even state-wide and nationwide.

Our opposition to this initiative goes far beyond our questioning of the political and financial motives of the ordinance’s proponents…although much has to be said about the history of Michael Weinstein and the AHF in exploiting the pandemic of STI’s and HIV to suit his/their own personal profits, or the ham-fisted paternalism of the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health and Cal-OSHA in rejecting the testimonies and experiences of active performers and the proven track record of the existing system of peer pressure combined with screening and vigilant testing, or the tainted histories of some of the performers who have become the main symbols of justification for the condom mandate campaign.

Our opposition to this initiative also goes beyond our knowledge of what happens when good intentions are connected to bad, overreaching legislation that promises a panacea or a quick-fix to a problem that is considerably more complex and requiring more of a broad-based approach than merely scapegoating performers who engage in sex as a performance job. Not to mention, legislation that detaches itself from the all too real epidemic/pandemic of STI’s and HIV that has devastated poor and working class communities, as well as the very gay communities that Michael Weinstein would claim to want to protect.

Our opposition to this initiative also goes well beyond the attempts by certain personalities to distort the facts and inject fear and propaganda through outlandish claims of "blacklisting" of performers who want to use condoms voluntarily as one tool of many in protecting themselves; or, even worse, overt alliances with some of the most antisex, antiporn, antihumanist activists whose objectives to simply destroy both the LA porn industry and the consumers/fans/producers/performers whom have thrived within it, or simply to rehash old vendettas against organizations who have been on the front lines of defending and protecting the rights and responsibilities of porn performers.

Mostly, however, our opposition to Measure B is based on a fundamental principle that has sometimes been hijacked and distorted by its proponents, but nevertheless remains an essential concept: "NOTHING ABOUT US, WITHOUT US."

Performers in adult entertainment who take the risks should be the ones to decide for themselves what options they choose to protect themselves…and that includes the choice to use condoms or not to. And any government regulation involving protection of performers must have input and consensus from ALL performers and producers, not simply be imposed by fiat by bureaucrats more concerned with getting sweetheart deals with condom companies and NGO’s and government contracts.

In spite of some of the "Why, we’re all for performer choice, which was denied us when condom-only was removed in favor of condom optional!!" memes being passed around, the fact remains that this proposal would remove some of the best options for performer testing — namely, a unified and consolidated testing system — in favor of a "just shut up, wrap up, and hope the condom doesn’t break" fallacy.  Even worse, under the system favored by AHF and the condom mandate proponents, there would be no way that an STD+ or HIV+ performer could be screened out, because of antidiscrimination regulations that would prohibit firing of infected performers.

And, contrary to some of the proponents’ assumptions, this is NOT an reflexive opposition to the principle of government regulation, a Trojan Horse to the common right-wing view that ALL government regulation is illegitimate and that only the Wild Wild West rules of "do your own thing, and fuck the consequences" should apply. This isn’t to denigrate in any way our libertarian friends and allies who may have that view, but who nevertheless join our opposition to the condom mandate on shared principle; it’s only to say that there are people on the Left side of the political spectrum (Susie Bright, for example) who have been as critical and incisive in their opposition to the mandate and the entire campaign to impose condoms as our more conservative friends.

Of course, others far more involved than me have opined about the difficulties in funding the enforcement in an atmosphere of budget cutting and triaging of resoures that could be put to much more effective use, or the imminent dangers of overuse of condoms due to potential allergic reactions and even increased cancer risks. Those concerns are worrisome enough to justify defeat of this measure on its own (lack of) merits.

But whether you are on the Left, Right, or Center, the essential case against the condom mandate and Measure B is best explained by the people who would bear the full brunt of such misguided regulation — the performers themselves. I will close this with the testimony of one of the most renowned and respected performers of the modern era, since she says everything that needs to be said about why Measure B and all such proposals to impose condoms by force and fiat need to be defeated.

 

I yield the balance of this post to Nina Hartley:

“In a nutshell, performers as a rule don’t care for condoms for several reasons. For most of the men (with few exceptions), condoms make for a very-much-more difficult scene; just one more huge distraction to add to the host of other ones on the set: uncomfortable set, no chemistry with the female player, asshole director, late/early hours, too hot/cold, bad food, personal issues, etc.

For the women, there are just four words: rubber rash/friction burn. Not only do I have to work harder for him to feel anything, the scene takes much longer to get through, with the changing out of condoms, needing to give the guy a break and suck him again, and the total passion-killer that is on-set condom use. It’s hard enough to create a real connection, so the scene doesn’t feel to the viewer like we faxed it in, on a set as it is. If all of our energy is focused on our working parts, there is none left over to actually connect and show a spark, which is what the people at home want to see…

…I know it sounds harsh, but it’s not porn’s job to set a good example to the viewing public. It’s an entertainment medium like anything else out of Hollywood, and mainstream entertainment is not held up as needing somehow to set a good example. It’s a shame that our country does such a piss-poor job of educating its young people so that they’re driven to view porn to try to get a clue about sex. Except when a movie is expressly done as education-the Guides, Tristan Taormino’s movies, etc., their job is to arouse and entertain, period…

…Porn is pretty safe. If a player says "no" to the most egregiously stupid acts (cream pies, whether anal or vaginal), then he or she is unlikely to get a deadly disease at work. People do get the non-lethal ones, but they get treated, as do their partners, and they get to work again when their new test comes back clean.

Truer words were never better spoken.

More info on the "NO On Measure B" campaign can be found at the Free Speech Coalition blog, and at The Real Porn Wikileaks blog as well. Also, check out Michael Fattorosi’s Adult Biz Law blog, too.

[A disclaimer: This opinion piece reflects only the views of the author and of BPPA, and is in no way affiliated financially or in any other form with the Free Speech Coalition, the Coalition Against Government Waste, AHF, FAIR, or any other organization or group involved in the Measure B campaign.]

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3 Responses to “How To Stuff A Porn Panic: The Official Op-Ed AGAINST Measure B”

  1. jeremysteele11 Says:

    Nina Hartley’s points are worth repeating:

    “In a nutshell, performers as a rule don’t care for condoms for several reasons. For most of the men (with few exceptions), condoms make for a very-much-more difficult scene; just one more huge distraction to add to the host of other ones on the set: uncomfortable set, no chemistry with the female player, asshole director, late/early hours, too hot/cold, bad food, personal issues, etc.

    For the women, there are just four words: rubber rash/friction burn. Not only do I have to work harder for him to feel anything, the scene takes much longer to get through, with the changing out of condoms, needing to give the guy a break and suck him again, and the total passion-killer that is on-set condom use. It’s hard enough to create a real connection, so the scene doesn’t feel to the viewer like we faxed it in, on a set as it is. If all of our energy is focused on our working parts, there is none left over to actually connect and show a spark, which is what the people at home want to see…”

  2. alex96 Says:

    Nina Hartley is a smart person and right on this point!!!

  3. jeremysteele11 Says:

    Btw, “How to stuff a porn panic”… does he mean stop a porn panic?… there was a lot of blah blah in this op/ed so I just skimmed through it, but glad he included Nina’s points.

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