Why are people silent about the abuses and exploitation in porn?

Mia Khalifa - once a popular adult actor - has revealed not only the pittance she was paid but also the rampant exploitation in an industry that often seems immune to criticism

Mia Khalifa – once the most popular porn star on the planet – has just done the least sexy thing a woman can do: speak out against the adult entertainment industry, the one that made her rich and famous. Well, famous at least; Khalifa has been frank about how little she made during her three-month stint in porn – about $12,000, which is made even more paltry given it has since blocked her getting work in other professions. She added that she has “never seen a penny” from a site still hosting videos of her under her name; that she does not own the domain name and has been trying to get it altered for years, to no avail. “[Porn] corporations prey on callow young women and trap them legally into contracts when they’re vulnerable,” she said. It is a boner-killing truth ignored by the many consumers who visit the site in their droves.

In the porn industry, there is a belief that anything can and, more importantly, should go. Discourse on how to regulate it is deemed diametrically opposed to its need to be “dirty”. A fear of appearing puritanical prohibits any genuine meaningful critiques of it from the left, leaving it to pearl-clutching Conservatives. A need to appear liberal and open-minded has left many modern feminists uncharacteristically quiet on the industry’s ethics. And because of this, it is held to a completely different standard to any other part of the entertainment industry. Sexual abuse at the hands of music managers is a scandal; in porn, it is seen as a hazard of the job. We chastise the film industry for racially stereotyping characters, but barely blink at the wildly racist caricatures in porn - in cuckolding porn, in which black men are portrayed as perma-erect, part animal “mandingos”; in overtly racist parodies that make light of ongoing atrocities such as “Black Wives Matter” or “Border Patrol Sex”- as though sexual desire mitigates any type of responsibility.

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