Monthly Archives: September 2011

Does Porn Harm Women?

(Trigger warning for sexual assault and rape.)

Of course it does. You’d have to be living under a rock to not see how porn has negatively impacted women all over the world. However, men some people do benefit from that negative impact, making it harder to recognize it as such. What women see as “harms” don’t count to these guys. They will settle for nothing less than a demonstrable increase in rape – and by rape, I mean the kind where guys jump out of bushes and brutally assault women. (You know, rape-rape, like in the movies!) And by demonstrable increase, I mean SCIENCE! Countless women’s testimonies just aren’t good enough. Where are the studies?! People are always saying that there is no proof that porn is harmful. This is quite puzzling, since there has been plenty over the years, from sociologists, psychologists, and now neurobiologists.

Thank you to Feminist Law Professors for the heads up, József Mészáros is releasing a paper titled, “The New Pornographers: Neuroscience Justifies a Robust Regulatory Response to Young People Raping and Taping”. There is a link to the 56 page draft of the paper if you’re interested.

Now, let’s talk about this disturbing trend of young men gang raping women and children and filming their assaults. While the occurrence is obviously not new, they seem to be happening in greater frequency. What is (perhaps) shocking is that men are becoming so confident in getting away with rape, more and more are willing to videotape their exploits. These boys were brash enough to post their crimes on YouTube. Should we be worried?


Booy read aloud from an agreed statement of facts about what happened to the unconscious teenager over the next couple of hours. She said the three men stripped off her clothes and took turns sexually assaulting the teenager, leaving her bruised and bleeding from her anus.

One of DeCosta’s co-accused grabbed a bottle of alcohol and poured it between the girl’s buttocks as the men watched her moaning in pain. The victim did not regain consciousness until later that morning when someone threw water in her face and she heard footsteps running out of the apartment.

A couple days later, the three men returned and showed the woman who lived in the apartment a digital video on the BlackBerry of her girlfriend being sexually assaulted.

DeCosta told the young woman, “You don’t want to know what I did with the broom” and retorted, “Nowadays all girls get raped.”


Yes, he bragged to the victim’s friend about raping her. (Her boyfriend also joined in.) What if he hadn’t shown the victim’s friend, and got away with it? Does this sound like the kind of guy that would post his exploits on RedTube? Would the users of RedTube be able to even identify it as rape? How many would just keep masturbating? How many rapes are posted as “amateur” porn? These are questions we need to be asking.