The topic of racism has never been so present. George Floyd‘s death at the hands of a white police officer has sparked worldwide protests demanding not only justice for him but for anyone who has ever been treated unfairly due to the color of their skin.
Multiple industries have been affected by George’s passing. People in the entertainment business have been fired due to their problematic words that they said either recently or was dug up in light of what’s going on in the world today.
Vanderpump Rules stars Stassi Schroeder and Kristen Doute were axed from the show following racism accusations from their former castmate Faith Stowers. The Flash star Hartley Sawyer was canned on Monday, June 8, after tweets from his account of misogynistic and racist nature dating back to 2014 reemerged.
Let’s not forget the gay porn industry. They have been called out many times by stars and fans alike over accusations of veiled racism and bigotry. The GayVN’s received a ton of criticism for their 2018 awards where most of the nominations for Performer of the Year were Caucasian (only 3 weren’t). Another issue that was raised was why there was a need to have a Best Ethnic Scene category.
“In response to concerns raised by members of the adult community, AVN Media Network is making a significant change to the 2018 GayVN Awards nominations,” AVN wrote in a statement after the backlash. “Effective immediately, the category of Best Ethnic Scene has been merged with Best Duo Scene. All nominees in both categories will be in the running for a single award.”
Plenty of adult film stars have spoken to Instinct Magazine over the years where they’ve talked about their own experiences with racism in the porn world. Diesel Washington, who has been hailed as one of the greatest to ever exist in the industry, told us in 2017 about how much more effort he had to put in compared to his white counterparts.
“I had to work five times harder than your average white model,” he said. “My body had to be on point all the time. Each performance had to be better than the last one. I wanted the respect from my peers as a performer/model. I wasn’t some token black model inputted in scenes just to give the movie some color. I’m not just some BBC on the screen… it was a long road and a lot of work to reach this level.”
Diesel also discussed specific issues he had to deal with during his time in the industry. “Where to begin? From the start, I wasn’t doing any stereotyping roles. This includes no Thug/Homie/Homeboy/Gangsta… none of that. I was NOT trying to play characters who had to be black,” he said.
“Then it was overcoming models who had racial hang-ups… which is still a problem,” he continued. “How can I thrive or get work if some models had racial hang-ups? I had to prove how valuable I am by promotion and consistently turning out hot scenes that pushed the limits of this Industry. I had to stand out in every single one and create a brand known for high intense scenes.”
Rikk York, another popular model who emerged in the 2010 decade, talked about this issue with Instinct as it related to bottoms getting paid less compared to tops. “I’ve only seen Caucasian males or Caucasian models get that kind of treatment,” he claimed after saying how certain models are able to manipulate the conversation and get more money for their performances. “I haven’t really seen black models or ethnic models get treated that way. In my personal experience, I’ve been treated, thankfully, closer to a Caucasian experience. So I don’t have to say that I have lived that entire mess, I guess.”
Julian Torres, one of the newer men in the adult world, had this to say on the topic earlier this year. “I feel like racism itself; I wouldn’t know what to say because I haven’t experienced it. Discrimination of backgrounds, on the other hand, I would say I have. I have been treated differently just because I’m not white or American born. At this point of my life, I really take it as a joke and I don’t even pay attention to it. I believe in energy and I just decide not to invest it into negative stuff like that.”
He also noted how that sites like OnlyFans and JustForFans give a platform for those who wouldn’t feel accepted by the studios. “There is room for everyone at the table. At the end of the day, there is a lot of ‘isms’: ‘hairism’, ‘muscleism’, ‘pozism’ and so on. If you don’t like how the studios are treating you, then you become your own studio.”
“We still have a long road before the industry becomes really diversified,” Diesel also told us. “Sometimes gay porn is locked in a time warp. So, it takes a while for gay porn to reflect on what is happening in today’s society. It’s still locked into these outdated cliches/ideas. Studios would need to take a risk and actually push a model of color instead of every average looking white model. Instead of allowing models to dictate whom they want to work with like a dating service or something. Studios need to put their foot down and stop allowing models to run casting like an E-Harmony or something. This is not Christian Mingling… you’re paid to do a job so do it.”