What porn stars say about the new condom law
Bad feelings in the feel-good industry
Beyond the marijuana law in Colorado, Americans didn’t take much notice after Election Day of new regulations affecting districts other than their own. Except for one. In Los Angeles, actors in adult movies will now be required to wear condoms.
“It’s not about safety,” porn star James Deen told AnimalNewYork.com. “This is about freedom of expression. This is interrupting the people’s choices of what they want to view.”
That’s the essence of the adult entertainment industry’s beef with Measure B, the new mandatory condom law covering flicks shot in L.A. County. Actors, directors, producers and distributors in the $7 billion industry maintain that consumers simply will not want to buy movies in which their actors wear condoms.
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“The last time we attempted to go all condom, our industry lost sales by over 30 percent,” said Deen, who has starred in thousands of hardcore scenes and been outspoken on the issue (did you think he was shy?). “That’s a huge hit to our economy.”
Measure B, also known as The Safer Sex in the Adult Film Industry Act, was ostensibly passed to help prevent the spread of HIV among actors, and was championed by the AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF). A scandal in which one actor falsified HIV-test results, resulting in HIV exposure to several women who worked with him, fueled the fire.
But opponents in the industry say they already practice the strictest safety standards around to protect their people against sexually transmitted diseases. The industry requires actors to be tested every 28 days, and many seek more frequent tests of their own accord.
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Actor/director Kimberly Kane, who says she herself was subject to a fourth-generation HIV exposure from actor Darren James, voiced her opposition to Measure B in an editorial for Vice.com.
Says Kane, “Testing has kept us safe and while some performers might not mind the idea of condoms in some circumstances, no one would feel safer with condoms instead of testing! There has been a lot of speculation within the industry as to what the AHF's motivations are. Headlines? Fundraising? Grant money?”
Here’s a little insight, KK. Not long after L.A. County, the unofficial Porn Capital of the world, passed their regulation, the nearby town of Simi Valley demanded the same of adult entertainers. When the ordinance was first proposed, Simi Valley Mayor Bob Huber said it was motivated primarily by health and safety issue.
"And secondarily," Huber added, "we don't want them here."
Photo: Condom/Lifesize /Getty Images
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Although my first instinct is to support any move toward safer sex, this law seems pretty silly all around. How many deaths and/or STD transmissions are there in the porn industry that would have been prevented with condoms? One incident involving one person who deliberately cheated the system isn't a reason to enact industry-wide regulation. Are there more cases? If not, this just seems like an underhanded attack on an unpopular industry.
Reality may dictate that single folks use condoms but does that reality really need to invade our fantasies? If you're concerned about safety of the actors why not ask them, they seem to prefer testing over condoms. Sounds to me like some folks just want to force their will on others, thinking they know more than those actually involved in the issue.
But just come to our state to shoot those flicks, we need the jobs.
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