Posted on | March 20, 2014 | 55 Comments
Somebody mentioned this in the comments the other day, but I just got around to checking it out: Duke University freshman Miriam Weeks, who has recently become notorious as porn star Belle Knox, is a “cutter,” with visible scars that show her history of self-harm. “Apparently her ex-boyfriend that cheated on her told her she was fat so she carved the word into her thigh.”
The idea that the daughter of an affluent doctor began shooting porn videos because she couldn’t afford tuition always seemed a bit strange, and her claims that doing porn was “empowering,” an expression of “sexual autonomy,” were even stranger. It is becoming obvious that she has struggled with mental health issues for many years, and the liberal media’s ostentatious posture of non-judgmentalism isn’t really the kind of help she needs. Also, it’s boring.
If you want to see how to turn an article about porn into pure tedium, go read Noah Berlatsky’s Atlantic article, “Students Who Do Sex Work.” Berlatsky doesn’t even raise an eyebrow at this startling confession from one student porn performer:
I started modeling three years ago simply because I wanted to. It was a process of trying to reclaim my sexuality and sexual presentation after a series of sexual assaults. Unfortunately it wasn’t enough to ameliorate a lot of the trauma I was dealing with, which exacerbated my mental health issues. I was in college full time at that point, getting by financially with a combination of loans, scholarships, and money my parents had set aside for my education. My mental illness progressed to the point that it started affecting my academics, and I was eventually hospitalized. I had to take a medical leave.
WHOA! Sexual assaults, trauma, mental health issues, psychiatric hospitalization? I’m gonna take a wild guess that getting boned on video is not particularly effective as outpatient therapy.
But isn’t this something that common sense suggests? Do we really need case studies and social-science research to know that the porn business harbors a lot of psychologically damaged people with issues relating to sexual abuse and poor self-esteem? Non-judgmentalism is utterly irresponsible when confronted with such a situation, and kudos to Ruth Marcus of the Washington Post for this fine sentence:
Belle Knox is a symptom of a culture gone mad.