• Wed, Nov 7 2012

James Deen Takes The Mandatory Condom Law As An Opportunity To Travel For Future Porn Adventures

James Deen Measure B tweets condoms law 2012 election unconstitutional porn adult industry LA Porn ValleyI know that the central triumph of last night’s election results was that Barack Obama got re-elected, but did you know that a lot of other breakthrough measures were passed? Weed was legalized in two states, Puerto Rico might become our 51st state, and porn stars are now required to wear condoms on-set. In California, at least. A majority of voters (56%) voted to have Measure B passed, dictating that Los Angeles’ adult performers have to practice safe sex in every encounter. And they’re not happy about it.

In the days leading up to the election, porn star James Deen took to Reddit to do an AMA on himself and why he’s against Measure B. Aside from giving me even more reason to crush on him, he outlined his issues with the proposed law. It’s not an issue of health, he says, because performers are given a battery of tests:

performers go through testing every 14-28 days. their test is verified to be current by cross referencing through a database. once all this is done there is a physical inspection done by either a third party or the performers involved

His opposing view, which reflects that of most members of the industry, is not about cost, either. (Permit fees paid by the producers will cover the cost of the rubbers, apparently.) Rather, his worry was about Measure B setting a precedent and infringing on performers’ right to free speech, as it were:

measure b is an unconstitutional law. realistically someone will get prosecuted and then appeal to the supreme court and it will be turned over. if it passes it sets a precedent that the adult film industry is a scapegoat and can be used to further personal agendas. i can’t speak for international industries, but i imagine if there is a precedent set then other countries and counties will attack the community as well.

Bear in mind that all of these answers, including the one below, were before Measure B got passed. But James shows that he’s a realist. When asked if this would prompt him to leave the industry, he answered,

not at all. i love condoms and have no issue using them. i use them ALL the time in my personal life. my issue is government interference and violation of my first amendment rights. and the insult that we are not people. we are adults and should be treated as such.

He also addresses the issue in more detail on his (very NSFW) blog.

It’s fascinating that his sticking point is about rights and not, as I would’ve assumed, the issue of realism/performance. A lot of argument I’ve heard opposing Measure B is that it will screw up the industry. People watching porn don’t want to watch performers put on condoms because it takes away from the fantasy, many say. We’ve already discussed how movie audiences hate condom use in mainstream films where the actors aren’t even trading bodily fluids—what happens when the actors are actually fucking?

In the hours leading up to the election, James cheekily tweeted photos (also NSFW) tagged “safe sex” of his penis wrapped in a condom but still in danger. But just as Lady Gaga is thinking of packing her bags for (literally) greener pastures, so too is James looking at this as an opportunity to travel outside of LA’s “Porn Valley”:

James Deen Measure B tweets condoms law 2012 election unconstitutional porn adult industry LA Porn Valley

According to L.A. Weekly, the industry lobbying group the Free Speech Coalition plans to challenge the measure in court on the grounds that it’s unconstitutional.

Photo: @JamesDeen

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  • ohs

    please tell me how “once all this is done there is a physical inspection done by either a third party or the performers involved” counts as confirmation someone doesn’t have hiv or is a carrier of the virus.. sex is only safe if you wrap it up…every medical person will tell you that

  • Lauren

    Didn’t this whole law sort of reach the spotlight because of the huge syphilis outbreak in the LA porn community recently? I mean the issue isn’t what happens on set so much as in their personal lives. Also being tested every 14-28 days doesn’t mean much when you can contract an STI in the meantime and not know for quite some time. Yes they should be treated like adults, but not everyone in the industry is going to be responsible all the time outside of “work”. Is the law constitutional? Probably not, but is there a very real reason that people are in favor of it? Yes.