So this guy walks up to me in one of the darker, more superstitious areas of Cyberspace and informs me that I promote rape by my involvement in the adult industry, my personal views on sexuality, and those expressed in the pages of Exotic. Hmmm... I thought to myself, this doesn't sound right to me. Seems to me that if anything has contributed to rape and the general mistreatment of women, it's the repressive views on sex and gender roles served up as Truth by the Catholic Church and its myriad squabbling offspring.
I spent a weekend mulling over his hate-filled poison-pen postings (available in Usenet at tnn.religion.catholic) and came to work for another painful reminder: some feminists hate freedom, too! I'm adorably naive at times (or maybe I'm just naive) and I'm always shocked when someone who should know better... doesn't.
Recently Portland's weekly newspaper, Willamette Week, printed a letter that insulted nearly everyone in town. Jill Portugal, a wannabe writer, "feminist," and apparently irresistible sex magnet from New York City, complained loud and long about the very existence of adult businesses in the Portland area. By simply walking near them (or being deviled by the knowledge that they exist) she felt she was being oppressed and demeaned. So overpowering is her sexual attractiveness that no matter where she goes or what she's doing men comment on her body. And, to sum up her rant, it's all because of those sick perverts who spend time around those pathetic, victimized women. Willy Week, knowing a good thing when it sees it, ran an extensive dialogue between Jill and local dancer, Viva Las Vegas. As a friend of mine commented, two great minds but only one at work. Jill concluded that it doesn't matter whether women enjoy working in the sex industry because it makes her uncomfortable... and thus should be illegal. She proudly proclaimed that she had called the District Attorney to see what could be done about coin boxes containing Exotic (nothing since there's this thing called the First Amendment), and boasted a long list of intolerant views concerning anyone who doesn't agree with her.
Well, Jill (who complained in the Willy Week article that strippers make more money than she does as a news copywriter) gave the office a call recently and, in a very mature and professional manner, informed us that KOIN TV didn't wish to receive our "fine publication" any more and that we should remove them from our mailing list because "we just don't do that shit." I see. "That shit," I assume, is cover local news.
Ms. Portugal apparently prefers to read and write stories about murders, rapes, child beatings, shrinking social service agency budgets, and other, more respectable, aspects of American culture. I'm not particularly surprised, given that the woman who proudly crows about creating a T-shirt reading "Fuck Your Fascist Beauty Standards" doesn't make them in anything larger than an extremely small XL. I hope it gives her nightmares knowing that I own one of her shirts and that its maiden voyage was to a lesbian strip club. The big joke is that the words, glued across my 44C breasts, screamed the word "Fuck" so loud most people probably thought it said "Look at My Tits."
Well, fortunately for Oregon, Jill doesn't run the KOIN TV news department. A brief conversation with the gentleman at the assignment desk reassured me that the well-respected news channel considers Exotic to be worthy of a place in their news folder, regardless of whether or not the staff endorses our subject matter. And that's the way it should be. True journalism does not turn its nose up at those things it finds distasteful. It faces the world straight on and writes as objectively as possible on all topics.
Word has it Jill's heading back east again. I think I speak for all Exotic readers, adult performers, customers, and civil libertarians when I say good-riddance to bad garbage. Perhaps she'll find a successful career in the very far east. I hear the Chinese government shares Jill's lack of respect for autonomy... maybe they're hiring.