The Sporadic Beaver

The Great Porno Debate: Ron Jeremy vs. Gail Dines

August 17, 2011

Tags: Ron Jeremy, Gail Dines, The Joy Behar Show, pornography, Andrea Dworkin

The most frightening thing about last night's debate between Ron Jeremy and Gail Dines, on The Joy Behar Show, is that the porn star who's appeared in nearly two thousand XXX-rated movies, and the anti-porn author of Pornland both sounded more sane than any of the Republican presidential candidates did in their debate last week.

I hardly agree with everything Gail Dines says. She has, for example, classified Vanity Fair magazine as pornography. But she clearly does a lot of research—she said on the show that she gets her information from Adult Video News—and unlike, say, the late Andrea Dworkin, she traffics in facts and presents them in a non-hysterical way.

The heart of Dines’s “porn is bad” argument is that the bulk of smut you find on the Internet is “body-punishing cruel sex, women being gagged by penises, women being penetrated by four men,” and that watching this kind of thing affects how men relate to women.

Jeremy, of course, disagrees. Citing a study in Scientific American magazine, he said that porn is not harmful and that “fifty percent of all porn is produced and directed by women.”

Dines said that the porn women produce is even “more violent.”

The debate, an abbreviated version of which you can watch by clicking on the above photo, was civilized. Though there was one amusingly petulant moment, which doesn’t appear in the edited video. Jeremy kept referring to Dines as “this lady.”

“I am not ‘this lady,’” said Dines, interrupting. “I am Gail Dines!”

Bottom line: If Jeremy or Dines were to run for president (Dines can’t because she was born in England), I’d vote for either one of them before I’d vote for Michele Bachmann or Rick Perry.