Us and Them

I gained a bit of retroactive respect for Nikita Krushchev when I heard that his entire entourage, from his advisors to his driver, ate the same food at the same table. At least he seems to have been an authentic egalitarian. Marxism for him was not just a convenient pose to sustain his privileged status in a totalitarian state. His behavior suggests rather that, in his idealist vision, individuals have different roles, but they are all human... all essentially the same, with the same rights and needs.

I don't know how I stumbled on Marks Cum Blog [sic], but what struck me about it was this: Nearly every posting of themed photos (in the linked posting, it's intermammary intercourse) includes some pictures of the blogger and/or his sexual partner. I appreciate the way this act subverts, or simply ignores, the presumed relationships of power, and the one-way nature of voyeurism, between the subject and object of the sexual gaze in pornography. By recognizing his own potential--and that of his beloved--to be eroticized and objectified, he is also tacitly but unambiguously acknowedging the humanity of the on-camera talent in the sexually explicit images he posts. He is saying, in effect, They are not really different than Us.

This doesn't mean that "Mark" or the viewers of his blog are responsible or ethical porn consumers, at least not yet. I assume the photos he posts are as likely as any to use exploited talent, for example. But his effort
(probably unconscious, but very real and honest) to dissolve the Fourth Wall of pornography is an important step.

People who share their sexuality on camera have lives, and have rights. They want security and comfort, and they search for love and meaningful connection with the people they care about.

Once an awareness of these simple truths is present, it is more likely that the porn consumer will make choices that preserve and protect the integrity and well being of those people, whose work in pornography we enjoy.

Having said all that, I do wish this Mark guy would learn to spell.