That’s a quote from (link is to a NSFW site) Susannah Breslin, in her response to a Salon column by Glenn Greenwald. Greenwald sets up a false dichotomy between the DoJ’s prosecution of pornographer Max Hardcore, and governmental performance and perpetuation of torture. After making the fairly obvious point that torture is wrong, Greenwald repeatedly asserts that Hardcore’s actions are “fictional” and says that “no real pain was inflicted.” Yet Breslin says the following about Hardcore’s ouvre:
In Max Hardcore movies–”Anal Agony,” “Hardcore Schoolgirls,” “Max! Don’t Fuck Up My Mommy!”–women are verbally and physically degraded in an unprecedented myriad of ways. They are choked, slapped, throat-fucked, penetrated with fists, given enemas, pile-driven, urinated upon, vomited upon, and in some instances instructed to drink from glasses the money shots that have been delivered into their rectums. Most of the time, Little as Hardcore is the perpetrator of these acts. Not infrequently, his scenes are fraught with pedophilia themes, beginning when he stumbles upon his subjects in playgrounds, where they sit alone, in pigtails, talking baby-talk, and sucking on lollipops. Mostly, the sex scenes end with his latest costar a mess and Hardcore triumphant.
Breslin also observes:
According to Jezebel’s Megan Carpentier, we’ve come a long way, baby, when it comes to porn. “Say what you will about pornography, objectification and exploitation, the growing legitimization of the pornography industry–which led to much more government- and self-regulation–also led to a significant decrease in the kind of exploitation described by those performers as well as increased opportunities for women to participate in the higher-earning aspects of the production.” Where Carpentier came upon her theory regarding the current state of the adult movie industry is a mystery. One would have to assume her research didn’t include watching this NSFW series of video clips, in which a young woman is gangbanged, instructed to crawl across the floor on all-fours while stating repeatedly, “I’m a fucking whore,” and then directed to drink the contents of a dog bowl, the side of which reads “SHIT-HOLE,” into which her costars have ejaculated. The video wasn’t directed by Little; these days, extreme porn is everywhere you Google.
[You will need to go to Breslin's blog, Reverse Cowgirl, if you want to follow her embedded links other than to the Jezebel post. I'm not comfortable hosting them here.]
Obscenity law is deeply problematic, to say the least, and in no way is this post a defense of the DoJ’s obscenity law based approach to regulating pornography. It is aimed at protecting an ill defined “community” from some uncertain and indefinite category of images. It offers nothing to the women who were abused and injured by Hardcore. I have read, but so far been unable to adequately substantiate, claims that women who asked for justice from law enforcement were rebuffed, because as pornography performers no one would believe their accusations against Hardcore. This wouldn’t be surprising given the Bush administration’s view that sex workers are subhuman.
At the same time, it couldn’t be more clear that Greenwald couldn’t care less about the real women who were harmed by Hardcore’s pornography production. By dismissing what happened to them as “fiction” he is promulgating the view that pornography performers are lying whores who deserve whatever bad things happen to them. Torture is only wrong when it happens to men, apparently.
ETA: Jeebus, this reporter has characterized me as sympathetic to Little. Way to miss the point, dood.