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May 01, 2017

Deen, Klein Talk About How To Protect Kids From Porn

CYBERSPACE—The Atlantic magazine published an article online today titled "Porn Star James Deen's Crisis of Conscience," which discusses how the under-18 crowd is handling the fact that hardcore porn is ubiquitous online—and enlists "the most famous male adult-film star of his generation," James Deen, to talk about how he is "convinced that the accessibility of porn is harming young people." For example, during a podcast created by TV "guru" Dr. Drew Pinsky and talk show host Adam Carolla, Deen lamented the fact that "Now, a child, an 11-year-old child, anyone at any age could go to a myriad of places on the internet and be exposed to endless amounts of [hardcore] content," and when Dr. Drew suggests that the age for first viewing porn is actually 8 or 9," Deen's immediate reaction is, "Which is not okay!" "Granted, I’m sure there is an 8- or 9-year-old in existence of all time who was able to deal with what that content was," Deen continued. "But I would say very confidently that 8- or 9-year-olds are not able to properly process what this is. Especially when it’s not just, 'Here are two people kissing and some standard sex.' It’s some crazy stuff. And I think now that people … they are getting their sexual education and stuff, and I’m sure it’s better—or so I’ve been told by people who have kids—it’s better than it was when I was a kid, but they’re still seeing these examples, regularly, for years and years and years, of what they believe to be sex." Deen went on to express dismay that "with the younger models that I work with ... intimacy almost is uncomfortable for them. I’ll do scenes, and I’ll like grab the girl and like kiss her, or be like, 'Look me in the eyes,' and it will almost be like, 'No no no no no, I just spread my legs; use my hole and blow a load in my face.' But no, that’s not sex." Admittedly, it's not the way most people have sex, and while Deen goes on to laud sites like "X-Art and Erotica X and Passion HD" which have "built their demographic on reality sex—you know, intimacy," he worries that "it just seems that there is this programming and desensitization to what sex and sexuality is and it’s creating this very odd dynamic within the industry." Anyway, the "problem" has worried Deen enough that he's taken steps to minimize exposure to hardcore for those who stumble upon his sites. "I’m in this world where I want to make this safe for anyone who stumbles on it," he stated, "but at the same time I need to compete in the business world, so with Analized.com, for instance, I removed all trailers, so you have screen caps, and you can see the images ... [I]n order to access any real hardcore content you need to get through a paywall. JamesDeen.com, for the most part all my trailers are just the first minute of a video, which is pretty much people talking. It shows you what’s gonna happen, maybe there’s some boobs or something, but it’s not … craziness." What apparently set Deen off was his discovery that there are teenage girls out there who idolize him, and one 17-year-old <gasp> even started a blog dedicated to him, and "on Tumblr, a network of teenage bloggers has emerged to turn the focus on him. The young women trade Deen videos, post candid photographs, and pluck out all the minute details that turn them on: the way he looks at a woman, touches her, stares into her eyes, whispers in her ear." And for some reason, this worries him, and led him to say on the podcast, "It’s the first time in my entire career that I’ve ever had an ethical dilemma with what I do." Fortunately, a column posted by family therapist Dr. Marty Klein on his blog on April 28 goes a long way toward answering Deen's concerns. Titled, "When Should Parents Talk To Kids About Porn?," Dr. Klein has an immediate answer: "Now," adding, "Just like a single conversation isn’t enough to cover everything a kid needs to know about nutrition or bike safety as he or she grows, it isn’t enough to cover the subject of porn. Or the even more complex subject of sexuality." Among the points Dr. Klein, author of the recent book His Porn, Her Pain, recommends covering are: * "You don’t want porn to be the topic of the first talk you have with your kids about sex. Therefore, go talk with them about sex now, preparing the vocabulary and concepts for upcoming conversations about porn," and, * "Porn isn’t made for kids, and we don’t want them watching it. Nevertheless, they need preparation for the watching that they’re going to do, whether it’s intentional or not. This is NOT a double message: we want them to bike safely, but require they wear a helmet; we want them to drive safely, but require them to wear a seat belt." Dr. Klein feels it's important to point out to youngsters such facts as "Real sex doesn’t feel like porn looks"; "Porn involves unusual bodies in unusual circumstances doing unusual things"; and, "There’s a lot of preparation off-camera that we don’t see—the script, the planning, the use of products like lube and Viagra and contraception," all of which supports one of his main points to convey to teens, "Porn isn’t made for you." Dr. Klein's bottom line? "If you’re embarrassed to talk to your kids about sex or porn, say 'I'm embarrassed.' Then talk anyway." And why is this important? Because, according to the Guttmacher Institute, just 22 states and the District of Columbia mandate both sex education and HIV education, while two more mandate just sex education, but only 13 of those states require that the instruction be medically accurate—and in 38 states and the District of Columbia, parents are allowed to remove their children from any sort of sex education, no matter how miniscule that instruction may be. And if the kids aren't getting comprehensive sex ed from schools or from their parents, guess where they're going to go for it? (The answer is left as an exercise for the student.)

 
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