Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Sacred Swimmers

Hotel in-room porn irks activists

Conservative activitists have it in for everyone. You'd think they'd get tired after whaling on gays and women considering abortions, but their every-sperm-is-sacred creed has other implications, too. Now they're after the ubiquitous in-room porn that business travelers apparently use often enough to make it an important income source for hotels.

First off, I don't see how this matters long-term. Hotels are gradually coming around to providing broadband internet access in-room anyhow, and that kind of porn-hunting is a lot less likely to show up on the bill you have to turn in with your expense report. So it's not like those who are looking for what in-room porn has to offer won't find it in other ways. (Random thought: Could the possibility of losing porn-rental revenue be what keeps hotels from making free broadband standard?)

But second, I don't see how this can possibly be the business of conservative activists. With abortion, they claim to be trying to protect innocent lives. With gay marriage, they say, "What about the children?" as if seeing two men marry one another will fundamentally fuck up a ten-year-old. But who is a middle-aged middle manager whacking it in Topeka while watching two Asian women go at it on the hotel TV really hurting?

I understand that the porn industry can be exploitive, and that watching porn can lead to unrealistic expectations. But those problems already exist, and banning hotel porn won't stop them. The crusaders would have you believe that watching porn in a hotel will turn our middle manager into a prowling sex offender. More likely he'll watch a little, do his (in their minds) shameful business, and fall asleep.

A disclaimer: I've never seen hotel porn. But something tells me it's no worse than what's available online or in stores.

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