On A Tragedy That Could Have Been Easily Prevented

 CREDIT: Damian Dovarganes/AP

CREDIT: Damian Dovarganes/AP

First things first: I’d like to take a moment to thank everybody who wished me well getting over this god-awful flu and although I’m still going through it I feel well enough to get through this blog.

It’s not often I get to discuss the adult entertainment industry but recent events have given me considerable pause to weigh in on the subject as its turning out to be very hazardous for your health.

Recently Cameron Bay (right) and Rod Daily (left) tested positive for HIV, the virus that causes AIDS. While it’s no surprise how they got it the two bravely stepped forward to hold a press conference yesterday to discuss their situation and reiterate a call for an idea that’s been a long time coming – condom usage on the sets of adult films.

They were joined by the president of the AIDS Healthcare Foundation, an advocacy organization that has lobbied California lawmakers to enact statewide legislation requiring the use of barrier methods on adult film sets.

“I’m not here to push anything down anybody’s throat, I’m not here to fight anybody’s fight,” Bay said. “I’m just here to share my story and to get knowledge out there to people and try to prevent anything like this happening to anyone else.”

Bay and Daily are in a relationship off-set.

Bay suspects that she may have contracted HIV while doing a shoot for the San Francisco-based company Kink.com. Even though the actor she was working with appeared to have a cut on his penis, they continued filming.

“Asking for a condom on set wasn’t really what you did because you could just be replaced,” Bay explained. (Emphasis mine)

And that right there, ladies and gentlemen is a problem which nicely sums up the adult entertainment industry’s position on condom use – for which they’re against. If an actor/actress refuses to do a scene that person will be replaced by someone who will.

This doesn’t even begin to address the issue.

HIV, as I’ve pointed out, is the virus that causes AIDS and it’s sexually transmittable. We’ve known this since the 1980s. Does the adult entertainment industry believe by replacing an actor/actress concerned for their own health and safety is going to make this particular problem go away?

The trade group representing the adult entertainment industry, the Free Speech Coalition, says that none of the three actors who tested positive for HIV this month actually contracted the virus on set.

The coalition opposes mandatory “condoms in porn” measures, saying those laws violate porn producers’ right to artistic freedom of speech. In March, when Los Angeles passed a citywide law requiring condoms in adult films, a group of porn producers sued to block it.

That case is still tied up in court and there’s no telling which way they’re going to rule on it at this moment.

The coalition claims that condoms are a violation of the producers’ freedom of artistic expression and speech. To its credit, the industry briefly required condoms on set after an HIV scare in 2004, but the effort was short-lived. The industry claims that porn films with condoms in them don’t sell as well.

Well, porn industry, I have a question for you: when enough actors and actresses contract HIV making your movies how badly do you think that’s going to put a chill on your bottom line? How many people are going to want to step forward and volunteer to make your movies with the knowledge they’re going to end up dead from AIDS about a decade or so from now?

Keep this up and you’ll have done to yourselves what the churches, religious leaders and anti-pornography proponents have tried to do for years.


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