Without johns there would be no prostitutes. Obvious perhaps but largely unstated. She's not there for her selfish pleasure, she's there for him, and his pleasure. Women's bodies are sold and abused only because there is someone who is willing to pay to abuse them. Take away the demand and you remove the problem.
Why then are the men who buy women not spoken about? How is it that they manage to remain in the shadows, the moral judgment cast instead on the woman being prostituted, being abused?
The johns are given this privilege, this privacy, because they have the money. The customer is always right! What he wants, he gets. The johns are consumers, and what they want is access to women's bodies, to be used as they see fit, without repercussion. They want a consequence-free, conscience-free fuck. Or wank, in the case of porn. And boy, do we give them that! Society gives them its blessing.
The sex industry, the takers of the johns' money, the makers of their fantasies, re-labels and re-packages what it does to make it more customer-friendly, more feel good. Instead of speaking about women's bodies for sale, the financial imperative, they speak of sexual liberation, of a carefree, consequence free, damage free experience for the woman being sold. Spotlight on her. A win-win situation, these women just want a good fucking and the men do them a favour by obliging. These women enjoy it, and the exchange of money far from being a negative thing with power connotations is seen as the icing on the cake - she not only gets laid all day, as much cock as she could wish for in every hole, but she gets paid for it!
Society has just lapped that story right up. We bent over backwards for them. Problem is, if you bend over too far backwards you're likely to get fucked in the arse, which is exactly what's happened here. We've been done over by the sex industry. Or at least, we are complicit. As a society, we choose not to notice or to question because it suits us, we live with what we have become by splitting things off, by wilfully dismissing logical coherent thought. Wondered why people are so touchy if you question the helpfulness of porn? It has very little if anything to do with whether or not porn is helpful. It has everything to do with them. Wouldn't want a conscience to dim the pleasure! And maybe on some level they realise that there are problems with the thin excuses they use. It looks as if responsibility might fall on them, as if they might have to do something other than sit gazing at the tv or magazine, pleasuring themselves. Quick! Turn the attention back onto the women in porn! She loves it, she's paid for its, she chooses it, and I respect her for it. Phew - attention back on her, no need to look at myself or change my behaviour. 'Users' of pornography defend their right to buy women under the guise of loving women, respecting women. The irony! Hence immediate recourse to name calling for those who question if porn's really so harmless - frigid, anti-sex, jealous, prude! - I'll make you the bad guy to cast attention away from what I do.
Women are bought to be used for sexual gratification, whatever that takes. Not that you'd hear it couched like that, nothing so unsavoury. We lack coherence as a society in our logic. A couple of examples of our lack of joined up thinking? Child pornography is (rightly) illegal. But as soon as she turns 18? She'll be snapped up for 'Barely Legal' or some such shit, all thought for her welfare magically evaporating at the turn of a number. Rape is illegal, battery is illegal. But mainstream porn is increasingly aggressive, with spitting, name calling, hair pulling, women gagging on cocks and retching, women's bodies distended and their damage glorified and laughed about - 'Goddess of Gape!' et al. How can we punish one abuse but defend the other? How could we be so stupid as to think there would be no cross-over, no change in mentality towards women in general, affecting interactions with women in everyday life, caused by consuming hardcore porn? How naive! Or wilfully ignorant. We want to be able to buy women to wank over, so we'll ignore any consequences beyond reaching for the tissues.
And so that great magical feat, the vanishing of the johns, the absolving of the men who abuse women from any guilt or responsibility. Abracadabra! I will vanish the john and give you instead the prostitute. Her fault, her choice, her right (!) to be there. Let us look at her instead of him, add insult to injury. She's fucked anyway, literally - surely a little additional blame laying and putting words in her mouth won't hurt. After all, her mouth has so many uses.
Let us forget him, mumbling something about men naturally needing a constant sexual outlet and visual stimulation, about boys being boys, about harmless fantasy and a bit of fun. These wonderful women who call themselves 'sex positive feminists' instead start spouting bullshit about women's rights to 'empower' themselves as 'sex workers' and 'use their sexuality'. As if they knew anything about what they were fighting for! Don't fight for my 'right' to be abused, sister. They've bought into the sanitised language, maybe tuned into the highly publicised 'face' of the sex industry - a very few women saying that they love it and there's nothing wrong with it and how liberating it is to be fucked so much. 'I just enjoy sex, I'm really filthy, and I'm proud of my body'. It's all about them again, the woman again - no mention of the audience they're performing for, the men behind the camera, the power dynamics, just re-affirmation that they want to be fucked.
They forget, these people, these 'sex positive' feminists, that women who are still in the industry aren't free to tell the truth. And that in fact, the women who do act as the PR face of the sex-lobby are paid handsomely for so doing. You can't be pro-sex and pro-prostitution and porn in any case. Making it a commercial transaction eradicates the possibility of good sex because it brings power into the equation and so eliminates freedom and truth.
These so-called feminists look right through the ranks of the destroyed, of the sold, of the hopeless, of the women who constitute 98% of prostitutes. In fact, they don't just ignore us - they slander us, saying we exaggerate, that most women enjoy it, they point to the smiles on the faces of women in porn as if that meant anything. They fail to connect with the reality of what it is to be prostituted. They can't look us in the eye but they judge us to be wrong and dishonest about our experiences anyway. They invalidate us without thought. You are wrong! You liked it!
Funny really, they say the same things as the johns. In fact rather than the label 'sex positive feminist' we should perhaps use 'pimp and john friendly woman hater'. Or 'BS Artiste', as I wrote in an earlier entry.
What they have totally ignored, and what society at large ignores in its daily bleatings along pro-sex industry lines is that out there quietly going about their business without question, going about the buying and using of women, all around us, are the johns. We are looking at things from the wrong perspective. Ask a woman who is constrained by finances, addiction, mental health or violence why she prostitutes herself and she will tell you a lie, not because she is a bad person but because she has to, to survive. It is her self-protection. She'll tell you what you want to hear. So if you want to hear that prostitutes, and pornstars (same thing, really) enjoy what they do, we'll tell you that. And reassure you with a smile - all part of the job.
If you really want to know why she's there, ask the johns. They are the reason. The things that she does, the sex acts she performs, are for them, not for her. Thing is, the johns have a bit of a problem with honesty. And openness. They wish to remain faceless. The woman in porn has no such luxury, splayed open for your delectation and delight, frozen smile in place to aid your orgasm. But he hides in the shadow of a thousand excuses offered up on his behalf for his behaviour. Keep the focus on her, and you protect her abusers, the johns. And they are abusers - there's no such thing as a good john. Time we stopped defending the wrong people, excusing the inexcusable, and shifted the spotlight onto the johns. I can't think of a better way to kill the demand. His disgusting, perverted fantasises shown to be his, not framed in her mouth as something she wants and then wanked over. Until then, we have something of an invisible man situation.