What's The One Thing White Women Are Never Supposed To Do (At Least Not On Camera)?

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I don't usually write about porn. But I made a commitment to highlight racism wherever it rears its ugly, illogical head. And this is one of those places.

I could make this totally serious and talk about how it impacts the very real earning potential of black male porn actors. Or how the industry doesn't find women of color relevant to this conversation. Or how there's a long history of racial anxiety in America around black men and white women ("Birth of a Nation," anyone?).

But I'd rather just have you watch and be amazed at a fear so ridiculous, it actually seeps into people's fake bedrooms.

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We're back out of Young Turks and we're going to talk about a serious issue afflicting America; racism in pornography. There's a recent report about Alexis Texas who's made over 100 adult films, that she will not practice interracial sex in any of those scenes. Now, Why? Well, TMZ, of all places, has a report on this.

Yes! Her name's Alexis Texas! You may know her from the halfwatched movie, This Isn't UFC Two, Ultimate [bleep] Championship. Anyway, she won't bang black dudes. But, why?

It's a serious issue in the porn world because these white women have this white fan base and if they sleep with a black guy, the get abandoned by a lot of their fan base.

Translation? More black equals less green.

Look, the Young Turks online have a deal with TMZ; we share videos. I like TMZ; they gotta' just bring down the audio a little bit. Why? All right. Anyway. So, back to racism and porn. Well, Christina Rose is an adult film actress and she says, quote, "Racism exists, and it exists in porn." This is fascinating to me. I've been following the industry for quite some time and I'm really surprised by this news so let's bring in an expert here, Aurora Snow. She's not only an actress and director in the field, she's host of Playboy TV, on Playboy TV, she's a contributor to the Daily Beat, she wrote about it there, she was a female performer of the year in, basically, the Oscars of the adult video industry and she's appeared in over 120.. 250 films and now appears on the Young Turks, Aurora, Great to have you on with us.

Hi. Thank you for having me on.

Oh, no problem. So, the first question is obvious. Why in the world does this exist in the year 2013?

Well, I think that racism actually does still exist and, you know, in the porn business, there are some agents that are telling their girls not to work with black guys. And maybe that's because in the '70's and in the '80's and maybe even in the early '90's it would have degraded a girl's value. Only in 2013, I don't think that's true anymore and maybe it's just an old, outdated business model that's passed forward.

So, now you mentioned about certain agencies, there's LA Direct Models and only 20 percent of their actresses are willing to film interracial scenes, so that gives you a sense that there's something fishy going on there, whereas other agencies have 80 to 90 percent who are willing to do that. So, when you mentioned degrading value, that sounds so harsh to me but, what in the world are they talking about when they even say things like that?

I think an old business model, the way that it was, was that, you know, if a girl did interracial which, in the porn business, interracial really only means black guy, white girl. And if a girl did that, there was this theory that she would then, make less money, she would narrow her fan base, because it was thought that men who watch this girl work with a black guy would no longer want to watch her and that's actually untrue. So, I really think it's an outdated way of thinking.

You know, I can't believe anybody ever thought that way but, obviously, some people must have at some point. But today, people are keeping track, I think I once saw her in a movie with a black guy, but now she's with a white guy.. I'm not going to watch that. That seems insane to me! But apparently, there's an old guard in the adult movie industry that's so old, white guys who are more conservative and perhaps they're misunderstanding their audience? Is that what's happening?

I really feel like a lot of porn is run by mostly old, white men. You know, from your agencies, to your companies.. it's a lot of guys that have been around for quite a few years. And maybe their mindset is kind of stuck in an old way of thinking? There have been a few who have changed with the times and opened it up, but some are very stuck on this stereotype. And really, in porn, stereotypes sell. There's a reason there's a huge market where you've got the big black guy and the tiny white girl. That stuff sells really well, and there's a reason for that.

All right, I'm blown away by all of these old stereotypes, and it's simply because I had no idea it even existed. Is, in the old way of thinking that apparently still lingers today to some degree, what was an actress supposed to do to maximize the amount of money she would make in the industry? What movies or what steps would she have to go through and in what order?

In an old business model it would be, a girl would come in, she would start doing, maybe, solo, work her way up to doing girl-girl scenes; from there, she would start doing nonblack boygirl scenes, and then graduate to then doing either interracial or anal scenes. And, therefore, she would maximize her career arc and, you know, as the scenes progress, she would get paid more and more for each scene. A few hundred dollars more as she climbs that ladder.

So, Aurora, did that exist? Did people used to do that in the old days? Like, that's how you would maximize your career?

Yes. That absolutely did exist. But there were hundreds of porn companies, you know, back in 2000, in the '90's even. Now there aren't quite as many porn companies and there are.. is a bigger demand on the internet, so girls kind of go through that career arc, maybe in the first three months of their career, if they go through that at all.

Well, three months is quite a career arc, but... So, how has the dynamics, honestly, of the financial side of the industry changed so that you now get rewarded for speeding that process up? So, what's changed in that, in that sense?

I feel like the internet's changed. The internet has changed porn considerably. It used to be that porn companies were based on a DVD model, and now they've kind of had to learn how to have websites and website subscriptions, and also porn companies have to figure out how to compete with people who really want to watch porn on tube sites and download it for free. How do you get somebody to pay for what they're getting for free?

That's interesting. And so I guess they're saying, "Let's just skip to the end right away because, all this teasing through your career arc is nonsense and old school." All right, one last thing, in your article you mention that somebody says.. said to you, the number one reason that I hear, and that doesn't mean it's true, is that my family wouldn't like me doing it. Now that's one of the reasons that women don't do it. Can that possibly be true.


Your family's like, "Oh, you're in pornography? Terrific! Interracial porn? Oh my God, I'm shocked and chagrined."

That's very true. I have actually met some of the girls on set who were so afraid that their family would find out they worked with a black guy. And for some reason, they felt safer if their family discovered they did porn, but didn't do black guys. And, you know, when you think about where some of these girls are from, some of the states in the U.S. still have less than a 2 percent of an African American population. So it could be that the places that they grow up in it's just, they're culturally very different, and they come to L.A. and it's an eye opener.

That blows my mind. Like, "Aww, I was so proud of you when you were having sex with white men on tape, but now that I see you're having sex with black men on tape, whoa! You've crossed the line."

What swell parents those might be. All right, Aurora Snow, thank you for joining us and enlightening us on this topic, it was absolutely fascinating.

Thank you for having me.

All right, now, when we come back...

There may be small errors in this transcript.

This segment of The Young Turks show features writer and retired adult performer Aurora Snow. Her discussion sparked a lot of online conversation about racism in the porn industry so keep reading. Full NSFW thumbnail image, via Wikimedia, is public domain.

Aug 19, 2014

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