What’s better than a movie with Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Scarlett Johansson and Julianne Moore? A movie with JGL, Scar-Jo and Julianne Moore about porn addiction, duh. Joseph Gordon-Levitt nails it with his directorial debut of Don Jon, which (much like the protagonist) is bold and confident, both stylistically and in subject matter.

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A new porn site is brewing that, according to the creator, will inspire a new breed of more considerate lovers. Young men in particular, says MakeLoveNotPorn.tv founder British Oxford grad Cindy Gallop, are raised being fed a diet of hardcore sexual imagery and it’s stunting their growth in terms of actual intimacy. The new XXX site is supposedly going to portray more realistic love-making, “real world” sex, and less demeaning behavior.

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Follow me on Instagram (@zoahu) for more emo photos of canoodling cutlery and half-eaten desserts. Chocolate cake a la Bloodroot!

So many would think that because I am pro women’s rights, pro sexual liberation, and a crunchy animal loving tofu eating vegan, I’m automatically a feminist, right? Some women have issues with labeling themselves feminists, because unfortunately so many people assume feminists are cantankerous man hating activists who don’t shave their armpits.

While I’m certainly not an activist, I support feminists and feminist activists. I do have some feminist tendencies, too… If I were to take a political quiz I’m sure I would score a big fat F (for feminist, duh). And when I was 14 I dumped a boyfriend after he told me women “aren’t funny.” But I make you laugh every day! I counter argued, before spewing a litany of women who are hilarious. He stroked my cheek like I was a little puppy. “Of course you make me laugh, you’re adorable!” I’m pretty sure I pulled a Yosemite Sam, with steam pouring out from each ear as I made a high-pitched kettle cry. I’ll show YOU what’s funny, mister.

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With great anticipation throughout the past 6 months, PETA’s new porn site went live last week, www.peta.xxx.

The site, which showcases porn stars touting animal welfare (spay and neuter, folks!), is controversial for a variety of reasons, and many wonder if it is helping or hindering the cause. I mean, PETA has long been known for ridiculous, media attracting tactics, and no one can argue that sex sells. Remember their V-day ad that claimed vegans had such good sex, we need helmets and knee pads? Apparently “good” sex equals rough sex, and they (jokingly, mind you) said women should wear safety goggles so as to avoid getting blasted in the eye with potent vegan man seed? Or what about their awesomely raunchy super-bowl ad that shows women having a good time with their veggies?

As someone who is an advocate for both embracing sexuality and veganism, the new XXX site does amuse me. But some may argue it makes the cause look a bit ridiculous by clearly attracting attention for a not so sexy cause, through sex appeal. The site features Jenna Jameson, legend Ron Jeremy, and a personal darling of mine, Sasha Grey.

The site draws you in with promises of nudity and then slams you with some other graphic images that are not so sexy (think animal cruelty), so it is definitely an example of using sex to sell your point. But is this bad? I mean, all the cool kids are doing it, right? I also can’t help but wonder if all the porn stars on the site are actually vegan…if not, that would seem hypocritical. When Jenna Jameson says “Pleather yourself,” is she then going home, or to her next film set, to don actual leather?

If you click the “Why Nudity?” link on the site, PETA explains itself:

PETA’s mission is to put an end to animal suffering, and we use every available opportunity to spread this message—we always have, and we always will. Unfortunately, this is not always an easy task. Unlike our opposition, which is mostly made up of wealthy industries and corporations, PETA must rely on getting free “advertising” through media coverage. It’s a safe bet that many visitors to PETA.xxx didn’t set out to learn about how animals are mercilessly slaughtered on today’s factory farms; understandably, such topics are convenient to ignore. That’s why PETA must make our message impossible to forget—and launching a website with a .xxx domain name is one way that we can achieve that goal.

While the site gives me mixed feelings (to be honest, I think it is more R rated than XXX) what I really like about it is the “Sex Tips” page. When I first clicked it I was expecting some Cosmo-inspired babble, but it talks about how what we eat affects our sex drive, and goes over a bunch of different plant-based munchies we can take to fire ourselves up. Love this.

SO what do you think? Is this a good move for PETA, or no?

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I found this great article from the NY Times on porn that I wanted to share. Basically it discussed how our society’s constant access to porn has created all sorts of problems, but not the ones that were originally believed to occur (a bunch of animalistic, sex-crazed men running around demoralizing and raping women). Instead, our cultures preference to porn  has lead to the demystification of sex and the loss of confidence in women, as they are aware they are constantly being compared to porn stars and are unable to meet the same standards. Read the article, it is very interesting. However, what I want to talk about now is (for once) not porn but a reflection on something mentioned in the article that struck a chord for me.

The author, Naomi Wolf, did a lot of her research for this article with college aged men and women. She found out that college aged women feel pressure to live up to men’s sexual expectations, most of which have been set by the porn they are seeing.  Wolf writes “college girls are expected to tease guys at keg parties with lesbian kisses à la Britney and Madonna.” However, our society’s access to porn has trickled down into other outlets of media as well. Growing up, an rated R movie was anything slightly hot-n-heavy or with a string of cuss words, and now you can see partial nudity in a pg-13 movie and hear a variety of nasty words in pop songs played on the radio or in movies shown on daytime TV. You also see scantily clad (and I mean really really scantily clad) women on billboards all over the country where anyone, even  little girls who still play with dolls, can see them. Now they won’t have to wait until highschool or college to feel insecure about their bodies. And so the corruption of our youth begins. Now not only is sex demystified for people who are at the ripe age for partaking in it, it is also being flaunted to our country’s children. I will never forget the day when the six-year-old girl I was babysitting turned to me, flashing her adorable gap-toothed grin and said “you look really sexy today.” In horror, (although the grin was very cute) I asked her if she knew what sexy meant and she replied “no, but I know that it is a good thing to be.”

Even more terrifying is the following video which I stumbled across on the Facebook page of one of my former professors. She was commenting on the fact that after seeing this clip she decided her daughter (who is under a year old) should be homeschooled.

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tnTyvqYT3Y8&feature=related]

These girls are seriously talented dancers, but at seven years old they should be wearing tutus as they prance across the stage to music from The Nutcracker. The fact that our society seems to be alright with this kind of behaviour coming from children is disgusting, but what is more disgusting is the parents who not only allow but encourage it. Where can we possibly be headed if this is what is going on when these girls are seven? In Wolf’s article she is worried about sex being demystified to college students, but at the rate the media puts sex in front of our kids, sex will be no big deal come early middle school if not sooner. Parents will have to put in some serious effort to shield their kids from sexuality in the media, a feat that may be nearly impossible with the progression of technology. Keeping our children children is only going to become more difficult.

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