This is sort of odd for a Conservative-ish Catholic who writes novels about Vatican ninjas and hates sex scenes in mainstream fiction. Had you told me I'd be talking about porn on my blog when I started it, I would have laughed in your face.
But, first we had retired actress Celine Tran, doing a nice sword fight video. Then there was Sarah Garlits and the blog on rape. It's starting to look a little strange. I can almost hear some people saying "Declan, is there something you want to share?"
Let me elaborate a little on my history with porn ... That sounds worse than it is. It's actually much stranger than that.
Before The Pius Trilogy ate up a quarter of my life, I had other projects I wanted to work on. In fact, the one-volume A Pius Man was going to be the end of a series of books, with each of the characters appearing in other novels. My series about the Secret Service Agent and the CIA assassin featured Father Frank Williams, the Pope, Giovanni Figlia, IRA leader Deaglan Lynch, the author Matthew Kovach, Scott Murphy, and mafia kneebreaker Jon Koenig, scattered in various and sundry parts throughout. It's where the FBI computer hacker Blaine Lansing first appeared with Jennifer Lance.
It Was Only On Stun! was the first novel with Sean A.P. Ryan, and the first of a trilogy. If you've read the book (and I don't blame you if you haven't) I like dropping Sean into places where he is out of sorts and uncomfortable. The second book was supposed to feature protecting someone who was NOT Natalie Portman during her time at Harvard.
The third book was supposed to be Sean protecting a porn actress. Which would be hysterical. He's not a prude, but he is really uncomfortable being around a naked woman he's not involved with. I figured it would be hilarious.
However, I knew nothing about porn. But, having been to an all-male high school that shall not be named, I had heard the name Asia Carrera. It was someplace to start.
Tell me that those last two sentences don't make you want to high-five her. It's kinda awesome.
When I saw that she was having money problems following the death of her husband, I chimed in with an email suggesting a biography. Heck, if Jenna Jameson could do it (her book was all over the place at the time), Carrera could do it. From what little I saw of her, she was way more interesting than Jameson.
She wrote back that part of her life was too hard to think about, and it was something she wanted to leave behind her, maybe some other time....
Huh. Remember this, I'll refer back to it.
|Come on, she's Troi, dang it.|
Also, they insisted that porn was more feminist than Hollywood, so that was interesting.
I'm a bit of a libertarian, mostly under the heading of "Leave me alone, I leave you alone."
As a Catholic, I'm also libertarian in my views. In his book, The Irrational Atheist, Vox Day states that a libertarian Christian says "I don't care if you go to Hell." I think that's a little harsh. I do care if someone goes to Hell... But I also don't know who's going and who's not.
Frankly, the Vatican more or less backs me up on this. The Pope makes moral statements for Catholics. Do we believe these ex cathedra statements are The Last Word? Yes.
Do we expect anyone else to follow them but Catholics? No. Non-Catholics can take them as suggestions. Period. Done. Next topic.
Saint Francis of Assisi is famous for stating that "I am the worst sinner I know," because he knew his own heart, and didn't know anyone else's.
If you prefer the literature version, go for The Great Gatsby.
In my younger and more vulnerable years my father gave me some advice that I've been turning over in my mind ever since. "Whenever you feel like criticizing any one," he told me, "just remember that all the people in this world haven’t had the advantages that you’ve had."Short version: I don't know what's in anyone else's heart. Heck, what's in my heart will get me halfway to Hell, especially during rush hour.
....Reserving judgments is a matter of infinite hope. I am still a little afraid of missing something if I forget that, as my father snobbishly suggested, and I snobbishly repeat, a sense of the fundamental decencies is parceled out unequally at birth.
And, again, the Catholic church has never said any individual person has ever gone to Hell.
Do I approve of men or women doing pornography? No, but they didn't ask me, and it's their life, and if they're happy, good luck with that. I don't know what their conscience tells them, I don't know what their heads or their hearts tell them, and the likelihood that I will ever know are so slight as to be nonexistent.
Look at Asia Carrera's comment above when I mentioned doing a bio. I don't know what she's been through, what went through her mind when she was employed, nor do I know what situations and beliefs brought her to make her decisions. Nor do I know what she regrets or doesn't. Neither do you.
Do I think doing porn a bad idea? Yes, I do.
Do I think that makes the actors in porn evil? No. For all I know, half the people in porn go to confession afterwards.
Hell, you want to play moral score card? By my math, there are some women in porn who have slept with fewer men than any one character on Sex in the City. For all I know, the circles of male actors they frequent are smaller than the Rolodexes of the women I know in real life.
I don't know.
I also don't care.
Honestly, does Tran's former porn career make her swordfight any less awesome? No. Does Sarah Garlits' make her efforts and statements on rape any less eloquent, poignant, or on-topic? No. Does Asia Carrera's make her any less smart? No. Does April O'Neil's current career make her less of a nerd? No. They're people. And like people, they're multi-faceted, and their jobs aren't their entire life. Unless they're just shallow and that's the only thing they're able to do ... but isn't that about half the workforce?
What little I've seen of these people as people, I like. Sarah Garlits is goofy and witty. Asia Carrera is smart and honest. Stoya seems good with numbers. April O'Neil is adorable with nerd cred.
What's my point? Pornstars are people too. Yes, I usually think that people suck, but you get the idea...
And, given the topic of this post, that may not be the best phrasing.