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Win for Porn Industry; Loss for Women; NOW Reverts to the Usual

Please Forward to Whomever Should Know

For the past 20 years, New York State NOW has had an active Task Force, addressing the harms to women and girls from the Pornography industry, and the broader sex industry including the use of women and girls in Trafficking & Prostitution.

The NYS NOW Council has just voted (on 2/20/2010) that the Task Force should drop the word “Pornography” from its Title, and remove all reference to “pornography” from its work. In response, we have resigned as Task Force Leaders.

The following feminists are on record stating that Pornography issues SHOULD be discussed by feminists:
Carolyn Maloney, Gloria Steinem, Alice Walker, Catharine MacKinnon, Norma Ramos, Dorchen Leidholdt, Jane Manning, Phyllis Frank, Robin Morgan, Sonia Ossario, Carol Urban, Phyllis Chesler, Julie Kirshner, Audre Lorde, Shirley Ranz, Molly Yard, Ellie Smeal, Rachellle Suissa, Susan Brownmiller, Marge Piercy, Taina Bien-Amie, Letty Pogrebin, Lois Reckitt, Charlotte Watson, Judy Murphy, Sherry Rogers, Diana Russell, Ariel Levy, Maya Angelou, Rachel Lloyd, Laura Lederer, Meg Baldwin, Evelina Giobbe, Kathleen Barry, Pauline Bart, Gail Dines, Ann Jones, Melissa Farley, Janice Raymond, Twiss Butler, Charlotte Bunch, Peggy Reeves Sanday, Rose Garrity, Clarice Pollack, Kate Millet, Jennifer Robinson, Nancy Henley, Louise Armstrong, Donna Hughes, Christine Stark, Bob Jensen, Ann Simonton, Samantha Berg, Sandra Hunicutt, Susan Hunter, Robert Brannon, Rebecca Wisnant, Sally Roesch Wagner...

For your information, these are some of the statements/arguments, about why to drop use of the word “pornography, that were posted by State NOW Leaders just before the vote:

“We should not have a task force with porn in the title.” “I used to free-lance as the girl-singer in on of the last burlesque shows in Manhattan. Believe me the strippers, some of whom were also prostitutes, were far freer than the women whose husbands they entertained.” “All I’m asking is that we take the puritanical, limiting “pornography” header off our title.” “Objections to "pornography" can portray our organization as prudes, who are upset with the sight of a naked body.” “Our organization should not be in the business of endangering the First Amendment.” “The Right Wing considers lesbians and gays, abortion and birth control, along with AIDS education "pornographic." We need to not play into this.” “Even the courts cannot define pornography and we all define porn differently.” “the fundamentalists are burning Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet as “kiddy-porn”

For the feminist - historical record, the following NYS leaders led this campaign to remove pornography as an issue that NOW’s is concerned with: Marilyn Fitterman, Sandy Rapp, Lori Gardner, Barbara Kirkpatrick, Gaby Moreno, & and NYS NOW President Marcia Pappas (NewYorkStateNOW@aol.com).

As the former leaders of the State Task Group, we will continue to study and discuss the harms that occur to women and girls from pornography, the sex industry, and being used in trafficking and prostitution, in conjunction with other feminist organizations that share this concern.

We regret that NYS NOW does not. For those interested, some of our work is attached. Phyllis B. Frank & Dr. Robert Brannon, former Co-Chairs, Task Force on Trafficking, Pornography, and Prostitution PBFrank@aol.com Rbran999@aol.com


Greenconsciousness Notes:People would understand if the Task Force (TF) would teach what the alternative to porn is actually. Meaning a deep discussion of the nature of the product (porn) which they do teach and the alternative (sex ed) which they do not teach.


Porn is the primary, sometimes the only sex educator. Porn cornered the market.

If life drawing of nude models were done in grade school starting with kindergarten, young children would not be so needy of porn to learn and understand what their own bodies look like, as well as the body of the opposite sex.

Dolls should be atomically correct and always used for sex education. No doll should be made without genitalia. NOW should sell such dolls while making the point that education is the alternative to porn. Young children should be taught the names of the parts of the body using the dolls and life pictures.

As they turn 7-12 years old children should be given sex ed complete with videos showing masturbation and intercourse in a straightforward way without the porn aspect. Such videos exist and can be shown in sex segregated classrooms. Parents can attend these lectures - mothers in their daughter’s classroom - fathers with their sons or in a separate class for single parents. But since there are so many sex offenders among the parents it is best not to mix adult genders with children in sex ed classes.

The answer to the porn lie is not repression which never works and not porn or sexual preference advocacy which is slyly done by some teachers. Both homo and heterosexual advocacy should be discouraged. Instead sex ed should consist of definitions and accurate, straightforward, honest information complete with a discussion of the hormonal changes, adolescent lack of impulse control and disease symptoms and consequences.

Such classes should include the reproductive system of sexes and birth control as well as trips to planned parenthood clinics.Parents can teach morality but all citizens in a secular society should be educated about their bodies and the bodies of the opposite sex.

Life drawing with discussions about the human body, pictures, videos, genitally correct dolls; everything available should be used to show the difference between actual sexuality and the commercialized versions sold by cable and films.Children should be educated about the exploitative aspects of sex role commercialization; in other words, what happens to the beauty queens of playboy and hustler?

From 13 to 17 children can learn about STDs and the state laws regarding age of consent and related statutes. I would suggest reading some sex registry cases. They might be taught how difficult a pardon is to obtain.

NOW's porn task force should be sure that it is made clear their objection is to commercialized actions with exploited adult survivors - not to free expression of uncommercialized sexuality.

But more than a lack of teaching alternative sexual self-sufficiency goals on the part of the porn TF is involved in the NY action to eliminate it.

The vote is a political decision reflecting the prevailing ethic in the straight/gay male and transgendered community of NY. The decision to eliminate work on pornography reflects a failure in the intersectional model of feminist expression.

The main criticism of intersectional feminism is that a desire to be accepting and accepted (that is, politically correct) overcomes the analysis of the issue in terms of what is good for women. Analysis should examine the roles assigned to the genders, the consequences of reinforcing childhood trauma by sexualizing the drama, the roots of the need for more; the need itself created by mass culture marketing, often in opposition to the body's natural inclination as we age, to let go of a diminishing desire for sexual contact.

The personal is political. How do women experience porn; what age do they start, how does porn reflect a deepening understanding of an individual's sexuality and what reality can be taught instead, when girls learn about their bodies and how; baby beauty pageants, etc. We look at the women in groups like SAGE to answer the loud voices of the ex strippers many of whom were not born female.

Feminist ask how can we expand freedom and equality, not how can we restrict other born women. First, it is necessary to expose the exploitation that fuels the industry. The victimized have their own definitions of free will and consent. Feminism is their voice. Porn is the voice of the user/exploiter. Feminism tries to express the reality of born women's actual experiences as opposed to the labels that others (users) put on female behavior. Who ultimately defines reality shapes the world in which all women must live.

The vote to eliminate the porn focus reflects an acceptance of a patriarchal model of sexuality based on dominance submission commercialized to sell sex as an addictive drug with chemically treated, altered, women and children as the commercialized sex fantasy objects for sale.

Here, in the vote's outcome, feminist analysis lost to the politically correct demands of left males. Feminism tells the other half of the story - the story of the acted upon objects of porn's fantasy world. Feminism exposes the roots of sexual fantasy in the merging of sexual identity with intense patterns of parental interactions.


This quest for the truth of the experience in the porn industry, will direct subsequent feminist political action. The best of these actions are global laws eliminating pimps and escort services.


UPDATE ..........UPDATE ............................UPDATE

Pro-Pornography Leader likes Prostitution Too

... Marilyn Fitterman (2/23/10): ... One way ( to end Trafficking ) would be to legalize prostitution, hence, no one other than responsible adults would profit and they would also stay healthy... I'd love to hear a discussion about legalizing prostitution ie: sex workers because many of my friends are sex workers, they are educated and intelligent adults who have made the choices in their lives without interference from us or the govt. Let's make them legal.

Marilyn Fitterman(2/23/10) ...there will always be a demand, it goes back thousands of years, so until we can end that maybe we should think about letting those women who chose to make money off of these men do so. I know women who have married men for the comfortable lives they can live, these are just legal prostitutes in my estimation, not much different that others.



We are not surprised that the leader of the campaign to drop pornography as an Issue for NYS NOW discussion, has moved on, very quickly, to glamorize the use of women in prostitution.

The different branches of the sex industry - internet pornography, sex tourism, mail-order brides, strip clubs, and use in prostitution and trafficking - are all inter-related. Those who are oblivious to the harm to women from one branch of the sex industry are likely to be equally unconcerned with harms to women from all the others.

The use of women and girls in prostitution was one on the major concerns of our former NYS NOW Task Group. About one month ago, we submitted our 2010 TF Plan - which was never voted on - and along with it, a paper that we said was for discussion within NYS NOW, Does Consensual Prostitution Exist? The discussion paper was somehow, not distributed. We include that paper below, to prompt a process which NYS NOW clearly needs to have... but we were not permitted to facilitate.

You may be unaware that the Trafficking Law which we worked with the NYSATC to pass two years ago does not require an over-seas origin for the young women, and is actually the strongest, most promising, and most feminist-crafted law in U.S. history against pimping and prostitution. It authorized (but there's still no $...) help and services, not jail, for the women being used, and instead targeted the pimps and johns.


Phyllis B. Frank & Dr. Robert Brannon, former Co-Chairs,
Task Force on Trafficking, Pornography, and Prostitution





14 Comments:

Blogger JaneDoeThreads said...

Good Grief, next thing you know these Sell OUT feminists will be

normalizing Rape!

It just makes me sick. Well, never liked NOW anyway, what to expect really from the white upper crust privileged who sold out women of color and poor white women YEARS AGO.

Well, keep an eye for some of us Radical Christian Feminists [there are a few of us] who are not only going to War against the Churchianity Patriarchal Rape-Porn Culture--within our own ranks,

we are becoming sure enough, and I do believe, will be one day, one of the Strongest Voices Against Porn, Rape, Patriarchy, and Racism and Classism.

Though the voices are a small minority [and the persecution within churchianity is Fierce], it is a Global Movement and one that IS growing.

Sad to say however, though Strong Voices we are--due to Prejudice, voices that well, simply aren't Heard. Looks like, Green it's going to be pretty much, an Individual War against the entire world now...

unless solidarity, can be formed among women who are NOT willing to sell out the Woman Class, Oppressed as a Class, regardless of race, religion, economic status, etc.,

simply because they have a Vagina. That is the most ironic thing too, we are oppressed/discriminated/exploited because we are all Vagina,

yet, so many simply don't See it that way....as if they are or will be immune from the Vagina Hatred/Womb Hatred, if they hide or compromise with the Haters of the bodies and souls of women.

Unreal.

In solidarity,

Jane
http://homesewersneedleworkersunion-hsnwu.blogspot.com/

2:07 PM, February 23, 2010  
Blogger Greenconsciousness said...

Hi and welcome. Always so nice to hear from you.

I think women should walk away from organized religion which is nothing more than a construct by which sanctimonious men make their living by various forms of extortion and exploitation. Better to live our lives as we wish, finding ourselves and our true expressions; then spending out time trying to clean up the man's corrupt structures.

6:09 PM, February 23, 2010  
Blogger Greenconsciousness said...

and I don't think NOW's problem was class. In Milwaukee it was all working class and poor women. The middle class women involved really helped us. I don't think class or race was a problem of real feminists. It was a sword used by the enemies of feminism to divide the movement just as it is being used in that way now.

6:13 PM, February 23, 2010  
Blogger JaneDoeThreads said...

True, Green I have seen that, as you well know [having been part of that whole far left] however, we can't deny that within Liberal Feminism there is that aspect of class, I think it may depend a lot on the Region, State too [because there are differences in culture and lens there, those gaps may be closing but I don't feel they are closing enough].

As for the church, if you are talking Structure, church/religion I totally agree with you--absolutely, what many Forget though, is that it was Organized Religion that crucified Jesus Christ--not just the Romans. Not Jews, as a people, but the Organized religious establishment that was All about the traditions and laws and power infrastructure of MEN--Patriarchal MEN--and you are correct, we Cannot Change THOSE INFRASTRUCTURES FROM WITHIN,

they are simply too corrupt--if God Himself couldn't change it from within, Women surely can't. [God, being Spirit, not Gender Specific]

We forget that...especially today, but while many women Have walked away from the religious Establishment [I'm one of them and I won't go back, besides once they find I am rad feminist they Kick me out--all the time, including women's boards, esp when confronting capitalism, imperialism, racism, the fangs come out let me tell ya],

but even then, there are still Many women, in a trap, within the church culture, that are crying out for help who Cannot escape but who Want too, who are rising at a Consciousness with no Support and the iron fisted glove of the corrupt patriarchs closing down on them more using Psychological Tyranny, therefore the feminist movement is needed Within, as much as Without. But, I will say, the fists of misogynist Theocracy [and it is very tied in with the Political and in bed with Islam btw] is increasing AND closing in and shutting the voices of women OUT, leaving more young girls in prison and I do mean a type of prison that they cannot escape from--they may not use Sharia Law, but they are using other equivalents that are Just as dangerous, if not more so, because they are Invisible.

That is why I do speak out--though, to be frank, to be heard, is another matter--it is here that I think, the Ex-Quiverfulls are going to do a lot here, to rescue many women, and I thank Jesus for them--God has His hand in it, make no mistake about it,

Jesus was Never for, Misogyny, nor was God....but God works, within the human system, our Free Will [what humanity chose, they wanted that independence and freedom] but what I have noticed, more and more, God often, in Bible even, works from those what He calls, the Wild Vine,

those in the Wilderness, not those Within or Part of the 'religious structures'...religion isn't God,

it's simply man creating God in HIS MALE POWER DYNAMIC IMAGE,

and you are right, you can't change it, because They, don't even accept the True God,

Jesus said, to the woman who mentioned that the Samaritans don't worship in same temple [due to the racism/nationalism/patriarchy] that Those who worship God must do so in Spirit and in Truth--meaning,

God isn't in Religion...and never has been, never Will Be. IF God, Jesus were IN Religion and About Religion [Christianity-Churchianity included], they would Not have rejected Him,

but they Did. They rejected, the Very GOD they so claim--to worship, so of Course, they'll reject, Any attempt, at Love, Equality, Human Rights, Egalitarianism, if they hated God,

of course, they will Hate those, who oppose their power. In any form.

What so many miss.

Love, in Solidarity, fighting the good fight,

Jane

12:20 PM, February 25, 2010  
Blogger Greenconsciousness said...

You would love GYNecology by Mary Daly. Wherever you are I bless you and offer you myself when ever you need me.

1:31 PM, February 25, 2010  
Blogger JaneDoeThreads said...

You know I have that book, need to re-read it again. I loved your quote so much on leaving organized religion I put it on top of my blog, with a link to here...I won't lie here, I have had many struggles with my faith over Patriarchy, the language of the Bible, have had to Really search, and yes, the Misogyny that is Rationalized [esp the whole nationalist male 'god' supremacist Entitlement to abuse and kill women is Just Blatantly Obvious, what is Sickening though is the Women, who support this shit. I don't know what is worse, the entitled dumb ass men who obviously haven't realized they were born from a Vagina, not some damn Borg [yet they hate the Vagina since Eve and have been bloodying and butchering her Ever since--never mind Jesus was born of a Woman, the patriarchs today have all but Erased Mary too], or the Women, who Bitch about their 'oppression in being submissive to so called Christian/Religious men' yet at the same time, Rationalize other oppressions of women based on 'god' says cuzz we just so better than those Heathens...

I mean, you think the Cultural Relativists and Colonized Feminists are bad, I tell ya,

there are times, I think, ok What does it really Take to wake women up? Sending them to the Congo? I mean--I just Don't get it...what Does it take,

for Women, to See? Referring here to Pro-Patriarchal women, particularly the Nuclear Patriarchy-andro-centric or Patri centric,

even the Tribal Patriarchs, of the Old Testament, oppressive as they were, had More consciousness I think, than many women today. But then, guess when you're sold at young ages as either wife, concubine, slave or sex slave,

you sort of 'get that well, you're screwed, and do the best you can',

but today is 2010, When do we, women of the world, stop supporting this Shit? And to support it, Thinking somehow, in some Insane way, that we will be Liberated by the Brother Patriarch Masta?????

Shaking my head here.... :0

Love you too, couldn't do this without you and a few others, and I'm seeing more and more and more...how Women, we Women, are truly, an Oppressed CLASS, AS A GENDER,

no ands, ifs, ors, buts, about it.

Love,

Jane

4:37 PM, February 25, 2010  
Blogger Greenconsciousness said...

Well I sure am thrilled to be quoted on your blog and I am not kidding. I went to see it. I am rarely seen as credible because I am a thorn in the side of most people. When I am given respect it is deeply appreciated.

5:34 PM, February 25, 2010  
Blogger Greenconsciousness said...

PS Loved your little post picture and LOVED your big pictures of women globally that you have on your blog

5:37 PM, February 25, 2010  
Blogger Greenconsciousness said...

Women are a caste I think -- the way blacks were as slaves -- yeah some worked in the kitchen, some worked in the field but they were all slaves.

5:53 PM, February 25, 2010  
Blogger JaneDoeThreads said...

"Women are a caste I think -- the way blacks were as slaves -- yeah some worked in the kitchen, some worked in the field but they were all slaves."

Exactly! Exactly! And that is what so many just don't Get, arrrrgh, I am finding this across the board, don't know whether this is due to the nuclear andro-centric patriarchy [I think a lot of it is] or both, the nuclear/private slavery with the type of ladder down in society, that varies too with region, i.e. just the US alone, with the pluralism, tends to I think erodes real solidarity. Where as, women in countries like, Iran and Afghanistan, Bangladesh, etc., there isn't as Much of the divides, the class is somewhat haves and have nots, there are some divisions between certain ethnic groups, minority religious groups but all in all, women are in the same boat and see somewhat through the same lens, and that maybe why women in those nations, when they Do pull together, ARE the ones who will march, risk jail/prison/torture/rape, i.e. like in Iran, in HIGH numbers,

where as here, numerous feminists will balk, at the slightest 'rebuke' from men, other women, groups, etc.,

it's really sad and pathetic that it takes I suppose, a harsh crack down via Nation-State policies on women, for Women, at least in the West, to wake their apathetic and indifferent asses up [many of them, know what I mean] and get Moving, and by That time, it's too late. Meaning, I think a lot of the problem in the West is [developed nations] is that by the time policies do trickle down, they've become not only normalized but a type of Adaptation settles in, where as in these other countries the crack downs are brutally violent, across the board, enforced with terror, violence, therefore while ironically the freedom to move is severely Limited for these women--they don't have the Luxury of sitting around deciding whether or not to dump the title Porn from their groups--to them, IT'S LIFE OR DEATH,

literally. I hate to say it Green but sometimes I think, that much won't change here as far as true militant sisterhood UNTIL they lose the majority of freedoms, and they themselves, are the ones trafficked to Other nations--with no recourse,

that's just my opinion. And what scares me just a little Green, OK, hell a lot, is when That day arrives and it Will arrive, I wonder, just how many of the world's women, will have a lot of sympathy, for the women here [overall, you know], looking at this from a Global lens here, and that really is sad. There are women like you, me, Phyllis, even Heart, some others, who without hesitation will take the brunt and the slams, with out compromising [especially for PC & relativism & nationalism, oh that one just peeves me to no end],

but I fear Green, we are becoming more and more the minority. I hate to imagine, what the world here in the West is going to look like, for tomorrows younger female generation, I really do. It does concern me, but all we can do is continue to be a voice, continue to get the word out, continue to fight, the seed is planted, When [not if, WHEN] the crack downs on freedoms of women does come down, many will remember the seeds and those seeds, may be the very thing, that will give women enough hope in darkness, to rise up.

Time can only tell...

love you too Green, you have No idea, how much YOUR faithfulness to women and human rights and animal rights, is such an encouragement to me, love you like a blood sister, I really do.

Jane

6:55 PM, March 08, 2010  
Blogger Greenconsciousness said...

the point is that the house slaves have to help the field slaves and the field slaves cannot let class divide them from real help because that is what the master would like -- feminists teach the connections between women based on a common oppression and deepen their understanding of equal opportunity, I think we should start discussions on how corporations use race to cover immigration policies which favor profits but undermine women's and worker rights while encouraging overpopulation rather than population reduction to a sustainable level........ How foreign aid programs should improve the rights of people in their home countries instead of immigration to other countries.

1:33 AM, March 09, 2010  
Blogger Greenconsciousness said...

effective organizing is more of a problem than solidarity

Big money has bought the entire system so it is almost impossible to be effective -- for instance, the most pressing feminist problem in the US is still reproductive rights. Women cannot get women's legitimate health care needs reflected in the health care bill --- they exclude abortion from coverage. Somehow the Right/patriarchy keeps winning on this control of women's bodies issue. I think that is because women will not recognize they need to give men reproductive equal rights and make this battle universal.

1:48 AM, March 09, 2010  
Blogger Greenconsciousness said...

think about the black civil rights movement -- once it was over how could a subsequent wave organize as a MASS movement or is that form of organizing just over and now they have to organize as the working class around economic issues. Or at least start to understand that different economic sectors have competing interests. Reconciling those differences to unite in masses large enough to influence policy is the Great Work.

2:06 AM, March 09, 2010  
Blogger Greenconsciousness said...

Unfortunately, in that quote you put on your blog, the "then" should be a "than". I think --rather than? then?- but i will look it up to be sure. I think it should be "than" because it is a comparisan.

Better to live our lives as we wish, finding ourselves and our true expressions; THEN? spending out time trying to clean up the man's corrupt structures.

3:17 AM, March 09, 2010  

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