Jonathon van Maren

From the front lines of the culture wars

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James Deen defended himself by saying that during one scene he stopped slapping a girl when she burst into sobs. Which means he was slapping the girl for men to fantasize over in the first place. Shutterstock

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The James Deen porn scandal is so much worse than what’s being reported

Jonathon van Maren Jonathon van Maren Follow Jonathon

There’s something darker beneath the surface of the James Deen scandal. There is much more to the story here than a porn star who has allegedly sexually assaulted women. In fact, it has a lot to do with what we as a society are willing to consider “sexual assault” to begin with. The Judeo-Christian framework for sexual morality has been dismantled, and the secularists have erected a single, flimsy barrier between the predators and the prey: Consent.

Consent has become the all-important standard for what constitutes an acceptable sexual interaction. No longer is marriage, dignity, mutual respect, love, or even affection important (the most truly vomit-worthy development in the continually metastasizing cancer of the Sexual Revolution is the concept of “hate sex.”) If consent is given — which means, in the vast majority of cases, the girl saying yes to the guy — then no one has any right to pass judgement on what happens next, regardless of how degrading, humiliating, or brutal it is.

That’s why most debates about pornography go something like this:

Anti-porn guy: How is it okay to call women horrifying names, choke them out, hit them, and perpetrate extremely painful sex acts on them?

Person who watches porn: They gave consent. So it’s all fine.

Anti-porn guy: But I thought calling women misogynist names and literally using weapons and restraints on them was something all civilized people opposed?

Person who watches porn: Chill out, dude, it’s just fantasy.

Anti-porn guy: Okay, but first, it’s not just fantasy. It is literally happening to the girl in the porn movie. And don’t you think there’s something creepy about seeking your sexual jollies watching girls get mauled on-screen? Don’t you think that your choice in fantasy speaks to something deeply problematic about how you see women?

Person who watches porn: Whatever.

An example of this is what alleged rapist James Deen used as his defence against the accusations of sexual assault: he cited a scene in which he was viciously slapping a girl across the face during intercourse, but stopped when she burst into sobbing and said she didn’t want to do that, and pointed out that the porn industry is full of examples of male performers refusing to stop. Once the girl signs the contract for the shoot, many porn directors feel no need to shut down the proceedings if she gets hurt or scared.

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But stop and think for a moment. This should make you incredulous. That James Deen ceased to viciously slap a girl is his defence. Whether or not the girl consented to the violence, no one can possibly deny that the porn industry produces sexual violence as a matter of course.

Which brings me to a truly troubling article put out last week by Mic.com, a wildly popular site that targets young people. Titled “What this professional porn villain can teach us about sex and consent,” they admiringly profile Tim Woodman, one of porn’s top bad guys, on how he is very respectful and empathetic in spite of specializing in “abduction…molestation…and staged rape.”

Woodman gives a startlingly honest analysis of what he thinks people want. They want women to be rescued, he says, but first, they want all sorts of horrible things to happen to her while they enjoy watching it—“maybe even tortured, or worse.”

“That’s where I come in,” he says. “I’m everybody’s inner monster, doing the horrible things they secretly want to so they can enjoy their darkest desires guilt-free.”

Feeding the monsters. I couldn’t have put it better myself.

After all, anyone who follows the slow spread of venereal violence from the porn industry into the culture, from the fantasy-soaked minds of the young into terrifying situations in real life, knows that the violence is not being contained on porn sets - and it’s not just James Deen who finds his inner monsters becoming his external desires. The Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde scenario plays out over and over for the teenage girls who find out that their sweet boyfriends having been using porn as a playbook - and that they’re expected to imitate porn stars.

For example. The Independent reported last week on a new study, highlighting some particularly disturbing findings:

A study on why teenage heterosexual couples may engage in anal sex has revealed a climate of coercion, with consent and mutuality not always a priority for the boys who are trying to persuade girls into having it…

The qualitative study found that anal heterosex appeared to be “painful, risky and coercive, particularly for women,” while males spoke of being expected to persuade or coerce reluctant partners…

There appeared to be competition between boys to have had anal sex with girls, while the main reason that young people also cited for engaging in the act is that boys “wanted to copy what they saw in pornography.”

Which is why, another British news outlet reported, doctors are horrified to find an influx of girls as young as thirteen showing up at their offices for a variety of treatments including stitches—because their bodies simply can’t handle the sex acts boys would like to re-enact from pornography.

As the evidence of what porn is doing to our minds, our relationships, and our culture continues to come out, slowly but surely, we’re going to have to do some soul-searching. We’re talking about an entire society that is hooked on pornography. People cling to the flimsy concept of “consent” to excuse the misogyny and savagery that pornography promotes and portrays. Because I’m sorry—if your idea of a fantasy is the fear in a girl’s eyes, or screams of pain, or some woman being slapped to the ground, then whether or not she consented to this assault is the least of your problems.



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Jonathon van Maren

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Jonathon Van Maren is a writer and pro-life speaker who has given presentations across North America on abortion and pro-life strategy.

Jonathon first got involved in the pro-life movement after viewing a graphic abortion video in 2007, which convicted him to get active. He ran Simon Fraser University Students for Life as president from 2009-2010, while speaking in both the United States and Canada on pro-life issues.

Jonathon graduated from Simon Fraser University in 2010 with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in History. He is the communications director for the Canadian Centre for Bio-Ethical Reform.

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