It was all so sneaky. 1990 something. My friend James and I. Both 17, both full of raging hormones. We’d wait until his parents went out to the social club, we’d chat, listen to music and then onto the main event – we’d watch porn. On a clunky old computer. Mainly, from what I remember, off DVDs ripped and distributed by some guy who worked in the local Yoghurt factory. He’d scruffily scrawled vague descriptions on the front in marker pen. ‘Asian babes,’ ‘Fresh Meat.’ Often they didn’t actually correspond with the content we’d be about to watch, James and I. But it would be an awakening. For the first time in my life, it got me to thinking that pornography was no longer dusty old magazines on the top shelf of the corners shop, spanked over by fat, sweaty and lonely old men. For the first time in my life, porn was acceptable. It was fun. We watched til we ached, we masturbated together, then we fucked. With all the vigour you’d expect from late teenagers discovering, exploring.
This week I remembered those beginnings, because porn has almost become as regular a part of my daily routine as the morning coffee. For many men and increasingly women, pornography is ubiquitous. When exactly did it become so acceptable for women to enjoy porn, in fact so normal? I see it as a double-edged issue.
I strongly believe in feminist ideals. I consider myself a strong, independent woman. There was a time that many feminists used to mount compelling campaigns against the sex industry. It was exploitative and it was demeaning. For God’s sake, if Page 3 was an assault on gender equality (overseas friends can Google that reference!) then online porn was tantamount to prostitution. Made by pimps, drug dealers and possibly the Mafia. Pornography was an offshoot, a tentacle of organised crime. I used to go along with that, so the excitement of being turned on by it as a student was always tainted by the feeling that I was supporting an industry that was fundamentally wrong.
Is it just me or have we somehow forgotten these moral arguments about the sex industry? It is an equally valid argument as the one above, to say that it is liberating that we as women can objectify men, crave sex for sex’s sake and give ourselves functional orgasms because we just need to fuck. Almost every woman I know either has watched porn in the last year, or does it on a weekly basis. I personally love the amazing choice online. No scruffy old ‘Asian babes’ DVDs or contrived storylines these days. I dip into threesomes, lesbians encounters, amateurs fucking like they really mean it. Yet for all it gets me off, there is one concern, that still nags me. Despite a huge female audience for it, all porn seems ultimately aimed at male gratification.
Example: this weekend I settled down to a lesbian scene. Two gorgeous girls, with bodies I’d kill for (either to have a body like theirs or to make love to one like theirs) They kissed tenderly on the sofa, they caressed, they licked, ravished each other’s pussies. They writhed around while 69ing, they tribbed, they rubbed, they fucked each other with strapons. Yet after 35 minutes of this intense, hot lovemaking, what happened? The camera wobbles, a cock suddenly springs up into shot, obviously belonging to the guy doing the filming. Then he proceeds to wank into their faces before cumming in their hair. All well and good, but where was Mr Johnny-Cum-Lately during the previous half an hour?! The girls had done all the hard work, only for him to walk in and spunk all over it, as it were.
I never saw either of the girls cum, though I could tell they were close. Maybe that bit was even edited out? I’m going into the realms of conspiracy here, but perhaps? How often do you actually see girls REALLY cum in porn films? I don’t mean that irritating fake screaming ‘oh yah, oh yah!’ that you get so much. I mean an actual, earth-shaking orgasm. In the endless ocean of choice that is internet pornography, to me the one glaring omission is the recognition that women need to cum too. Maybe that is a future vocation for me, to fill a gap in the market. One can dream 😉 ….. But perhaps the original argument, that porn negatively impacts on the perception of women still holds? The trouble is, even independent women like myself like it too much, so we turn a blind eye and swerve round the moral pitfalls, lost in lust and the moment.
The lines have become blurred.
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