Prepare to pack up the porn

On April 24, 2014

Working in the adult film industry seems as if it would be an easy job, even with the slight stigma attached. Actors get to work with attractive people and shed their clothes at the same time for repetitive scenes of sexual escapades that surely are the highlight of their day, right?

Think again. Porn is not glamorous.

Every type of fetish and preference of looks can be found on any of the 4.2 million porn sites that exist, according to thepinkcross.org. The films may serve as a substitute when the real thing is unavailable, but there is a darker truth occurring when the cameras are turned off that isn’t anywhere near a turn on.

According to newsone.com, the porn industry generates $14 billion annually. Yet that cost does nothing to offset the abuse the actors can experience while working. Vanessa Belmond, an ex-porn star, said she contracted chlamydia her first time on set. As her scenes become more and more graphic during her career and the number of partners she performed with at one time started to increase, she began suffering from vaginal and anal tears.

The solution she turned to was taking pain killers before filming.

It isn’t an uncommon occurrence in porn. Thepinkcross.org states that 206 actors in San Fernando Valley, Calif. died of not only drugs, but AIDS, homocide and suicide from 2003-2014. The average life expectancy of a porn star is an even more shocking number: 36.2-years-old.

Shelley Lubben, also an ex-porn star, founded The Pink Cross in 2007 to provide a support system for actors in need of help. The organization also educates communities on the reality of violence and illegal drugs in the adult film industry and bring to light the laws it breaks.

One such law is the California Occupational Safety and Health Act, which states employers are require “to protect workers from coming into contact with blood or other disease-carrying fluids.” Semen and vaginal fluids fall under this category and are not correctly regulated in the business.

Turning to porn may be harmless to the individual watching, yet it indirectly fuels abuse to the actors on screen. Those pleasure-filled sighs and arched backs could be hiding a different story, so consider shutting off the computer and just letting the imagination run wild the next time you retire to your bunk.

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