Industry News

The Colors Of Men- Is the Industry Racist?

Colors Of Men

By The Colonel


The latest episode of 24, America’s response to James Bond, ends with two parallel scenes: In one scene, CTU operative Dana Walsh is being interrogated and tortured under direct order of the president of The United States while in the parallel scene, the president is addressing and lecturing her international colleagues on human rights and global peace issues. What a bold and precise depiction of hypocrisy. Come to think of it, what’s more interesting is the fact that Fox is broadcasting 24. Fox: Right winger’s watchtower, The Elite’s propaganda machine and home of the likes of Bill O’Reilly, Sean Hannity and Glenn Beck; and yet the place where for the past two decades the most controversial, politically incorrect and uncompromising shows have been broadcasted, from The X-Files to 24, Family Guy, etc. If you ask why, the answer is because these shows sell quite well.  They’re popular and attract tons of viewers and therefore tons of money made off of commercials, DVD and merchandise sales, etc. It’s business the American way, plain and simple. Take it or leave it.

In fact the same culture of profit exists not only in corporate media, but in every aspect and corner of American society, porn valley included. For too long, the issue of race in the adult industry has sparked much controversy, debate and conflict: Is there racial discrimination in the adult industry? Are the owners of big porn companies racists? Why some girls refuse to perform in interracial scenes? And so on and so on. Everybody from the industry workers to fans has an opinion, and some will go to extreme lengths to debate, defend and protect their opinion. Case in point, veteran performer Justin Long has recently announced in response to the discriminating, racist adult industry, he has decided to not perform in interracial scenes. I know Justin, I’ve hired him a number of times, and I can tell you he’s one of the good guys. He’s kind and polite, shows up on time and delivers a solid performance. I like him and respect his opinion, although I have my reasons to disagree with him on this issue. Allow me to explain:

 I have to make one thing clear before I get to the main subject: We refer to the business of making pornographic movies as ‘the adult industry’ only for lack of a better word. There is no such thing as the adult industry, neither literary nor figuratively. What we have are a number of independent producers who finance their movies out of their pocket and sell them in a competitive, dog eat dog, over saturated market.  These people have no such thing as a union, they don’t gather for annual meetings, and above all, they don’t share any common interests. They’re independent business owners, each with their specific audiences and unique ways of financing and distributing their product and profiting from it. The term ‘Industry’ doesn’t exactly apply to this particular business. Therefore, you can’t choose some of these independent business owners and draw a conclusion based on actions and decisions of those individuals and apply your conclusion to all of those who are in the business of making pornographic movies. Such conclusion and reasoning is inaccurate, wrong and most of all unfair.

Now to the main subject: Nobody makes porn to enlighten his audiences, get socio-political messages across or motivate people spiritually. Producing pornographic movies is a business, and like any other business, its first and foremost priority is making money. Therefore, the general rule which applies to any other business applies to porn as well, and that is the rule of demand and supply. In other words, every porn company has their specific audiences who demand and expect specific types of movies: The majority of gonzo audiences are young to middle age male viewers from various races and socio-economic classes that pay to watch wall to wall dirty, nasty fuck scenes. The last thing to cross this audience’s mind is the race. They even appreciate and enjoy interracial scenes, and that’s why many gonzo producers make interracial series and hire black performers. On the contrary, the majority of feature porn audiences are middle age to older white, relatively wealthy couples. Regardless of their socio-political affiliations and whether they’re conservatives or liberals, many of them have one thing in common: They’re stuck somewhere in the 19th century, and although they may not tell you in your face, but the idea of a black man making love with a white woman aggravates and disgusts them. They will never pay to watch that. Therefore, you don’t see too many interracial themes and scenes and black performers in feature porn movies. Even if a feature porn happens to be about a black celebrity (i.e. Tiger Woods) producers will design the scenario in a way that no interracial scene occurs between their contract starlet and the black man. I’ll give you an example: I was talking to a female performer a while ago. She’s a well known European girl who has performed in hundreds of movies. She said when she first came to America in 2004 and got into the adult industry, her agent told her there’s good money to make in performing interracial scenes. After a few months and performing in a few interracial scenes, she went to a meeting with a producer of one of the big companies to discuss signing an exclusive contract. The producer told her they won’t be able to sign her, because in producer’s own words: ‘You’ve been in some interracial scenes, and our audiences don’t like that.’

 You may ask so is it all about the business and there are no racial motives involved in the adult industry? The answer is yes and no. When you look at the issue objectively, you realize what porn companies provide is what their audiences require; demand and supply, the most basic and common rule of business. In that regard, when a gonzo producer makes interracial series, it doesn’t necessarily mean he prefers one race over another. Consequently, when a feature porn producer avoids interracial themes and scenes and hires less black performers, it doesn’t necessarily mean he’s a discriminating racist. Each one has their own audiences and each one caters to that audiences’ demand. However, it’s evident that some individuals who work at the adult industry as producers, performers, agents, etc. have personal negative opinions towards some racial groups, and they certainly fall into the racist category to a more a less degree; but those individuals are in minority and do not represent the entire adult industry.  Therefore, using examples of actions and decisions of a small portion of the adult industry workers to conclude that adult is a discriminating, racist industry is inaccurate, wrong and most of all unfair.

Going back to Justin Long and his act of boycotting what he views as the discriminating, racist adult industry, I know he has good intentions, but this is not going to change anything. For every man or woman, white, black, Latino, etc. who boycotts the adult industry or refuses to perform in certain scenes for any reason whatsoever, there are ten more to take their place. I believe what Justin should do instead is to refuse to perform in derogatory scenes, interracial or otherwise, scenes that depict black men as stereotypical gangsters and punks and thugs. That’s the worst type of degradation, and that’s self inflicted. I made a similar decision when I was a performer, working for other producers. I come from a Jewish/Catholic family, and although I’m not a firm believer or a religious person, but I decided I will never participate in anything that depicts a derogatory, insulting or stereotypical image of my people. During the 1980’s, I was offered to play German Nazis in two movies. The pay was good, I liked the girls and knew the producers and had worked for them before; but I turned down the parts, and producers understood and respected my decision. We all have our choices. Ultimately, every man should and would be judged based on his personal character and particular actions. Colors of men don’t matter.       


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