PORN: Rape by Proxy

**Trigger Alert – Some descriptions of sexual violence.**

A Focus on the Family Poll (October 1, 2003), found that 47% of families surveyed admitted that pornography is a problem in their home.

Porn usage is viewed by many Christians as a lust issue which can destroy marriages, and is discouraged as a form of sexual immorality akin to adultery. The mainstream public, on the other hand, may find porn distasteful in some regards but useful in others. It is not uncommon for magazines and therapists to recommend porn usage as a means of “spicing up” a dull sex life. It is viewed by such as an acceptable form of adult entertainment as long as it doesn’t become an addiction or involve children.

In general, both Christians and mainstream assume that women in the adult entertainment industry are there by free choice. The majority of Christian articles I’ve come across are focused solely on the sexual immorality of the end user, and that’s as far as it goes. Now, if all porn stars were truly in the business willingly, then porn usage would indeed be a matter of chastity only. But if the women posing for both camera and film are actually sex slaves, in a manner of speaking, then the use of pornography is far more sinister than lust.

Ex-Porn Star, Shelley Lubben, says:

“When I did my first adult film something very ‘dark’ came over me. . . . A powerful strange force enabled me to perform at intense levels only to come off the high and find myself shattered from the shame and degradation. I loved the attention but hated myself at the same time. I loved to hear how great I was but hated the brutal sex. I began to do very hardcore movies and only more drugs and alcohol could get me through them.”

Consider where a woman is coming from to agree to a job as a stripper and/or a porn actress. Like the runaway teen, she often comes from an abusive or negligent childhood and has never known what it means to be loved and valued as a person. In the current hook-up culture of our highschools, colleges and universities, she likely has a trail of demeaning sexual relationships behind her, drug and substance abuse, overwhelming debts, and even young children to feed and clothe without a spouse. A minimum wage job will not cut it. Thus, already approaching a state of depravity and financial despair she sees an ad in the paper for a local strip club or a so-called modelling agency (often a cover for porn producers recruiting new stars!) . . . and the rest is history.

“My first scene was one of the worst experiences of my life. It was very scary. It was a very rough scene. My agent didn’t let me know ahead of time . . . I did it and I was crying and they didn’t stop. It was really violent. He was hitting me. It hurt. It scared me more than anything. They wouldn’t stop. They just kept rolling.” (ex-Porn Star, Sierra Sinn)

“I did over 100 xxx hardcore movies where I was slapped, hit, choked and forced to sex scenes I never agreed to.” (ex-Porn Star, Michelle Avanti)

” . . . Guys punching you in the face. . . . You get ripped. Your insides can come out of you. . . . You’re viewed as an object and not as a human with a spirit. . . . People do drugs because they can’t deal with the way they are being treated. . . . The main thing going around now is crystal meth, cocaine and heroin. You have to numb yourself to go on set.” (ex-Porn Star, Jersey Jaxin)

“I went through more heartbreaks and became suicidal. I was taken to the hospital for panic attacks. I tried to overdose on xanax, strangle myself, and cut my wrists . . . ” (ex-Porn Star, Crissy Moran)

Do these sound like happily consenting women who enjoy what they are doing? (Click here for more testimonies.)

Consider the following questions:

If a woman is intoxicated, is she capable of willingly consenting to a sex act? Or if a woman says yes one time, does that mean you can now have sex with her whenever you want without permission? If a woman has escaped the industry but is unable to get her web site removed from the Internet (even though her contract has ended), is she consenting to the continued use and distribution of her photographs and videos? If a woman is brutalized during the taping of an adult film, is this different from rape simply because she showed up on set? If a woman poses for a web site while under the influence of drugs, alcohol and/or emotional/mental abuse, is she acting out of free will?

Yet these are the battered and abused women who comprise the multi-billion-dollar-a-year adult entertainment industry.

These are the women who look out at you with sultry “I want you” eyes and come-hither gestures – all the while dying inside, silently screaming – begging for someone to rescue them. They are actresses fuelled only by self-loathing and shame and fear – fame and glamour growing dimmer and dimmer on the horizon as the blackness takes over. Puppets with deadened souls, longing to be loved and valued but finding only violence and degradation. Mere possessions – cast aside like rags once their bodies are broken and can no longer perform. Beat into submission . . . coerced and manipulated into scenes that cut away at the very core of their being.

Riddled with disease.

And long after their escape from the industry (or untimely deaths), their naked photographs and films will continue to circulate video stores and the Internet, as millions of men, women and teens masturbate to their images daily – subjecting these broken, abused, unloved women to sexual assault time and time again.

But, you may say, not every woman in the sex industry is an abused women. They’ll even brag about how much they love it. No one forced them to audition for adult films or to build a web site. They’re raking in the dough and enjoying a glamorous lifestyle.

Here’s the thing. Even if that’s true in some cases, and it is, my point is that the end users have no way of knowing if the women they’re relieving themselves to are sex slaves, rape victims, alcoholics, drug addicts, or willing participants. Porn sites do not have disclaimers that read, “Warning: This woman can only perform under intoxication; Warning: This woman didn’t agree to the scene but we forced her to do it anyway; Warning: This woman is desperate for money and vomits between every scene; or Warning: These videos and photos were uploaded by an ex-boyfriend without consent.”

Certainly many young women enter the adult film industry with stars in their eyes, enjoying being worshipped as goddesses while making exorbitant amounts of money. It may indeed be quite some time before the curtains come down and they’re disillusioned enough to quit the industry. It may even take years of physical and emotional abuse before she gains the desire, strength, and means to escape. Or she may remain trapped for a lifetime. But those who believe that women (and men) enjoy performing porn ought to read the statistics on how many porn stars actually die untimely deaths from disease, overdose, and suicide.

Consider: If a woman didn’t realize someone was stealing money from her bank account every month, year after year, would that make the theft okay?

The woman who grows up to become a stripper after a childhood of sexual molestation is no different from the woman being robbed blind. And the woman who eagerly signs a contract but finds herself facing unwanted, traumatizing scenes and/or abusing substances to cope, is no different either.

While one can always find a porn star who will rave about how wonderful their job is, an untold number of teen prostitutes and porn stars are actually captive women who are preyed upon, exploited, battered, and assaulted by a cruel industry fuelled and funded by the end user.

By you.

Because without you, there would be no one to sell the product to. By using pornography, you may well have become an unwitting participant and an accomplice in their ongoing abuse and trauma; even their deaths.

The use of porn is not just lust: It is rape by proxy.

 

RECOMMENDED RESOURCES:

The Porn Effect

The Truth Behind the Fantasy of Porn

Pornography and Sex Addiction Recovery

The Pink Cross Foundation

Finding God After Pornography

Beggar’s Daughter

 

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Bekah Ferguson

Hello and welcome. :) I’m the author of the contemporary romance novels, When the Fog Cleared and A White Rose, and many short stories (sci-fi, paranormal, fantasy, coming-of-age). I live in Ontario, Canada, with my husband, Robbie Ferguson (Category5 Technology TV), and our three children. As a writer, I take great interest in nuance - catching it by the tail as it darts in and out between extremes. While I do believe in certain moral absolutes (who doesn't?), I find the gray areas fascinating to explore. For this reason I describe myself as a progressive Christian - too conservative to be liberal and too liberal to be conservative. “Tell all the truth but tell it slant ... / The Truth must dazzle gradually / Or every man be blind.” ~ Emily Dickinson (1263) You can follow me on Facebook & Twitter.

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