Opinion

The Sexxxtons and the mainstreaming of porn

Photo of Matt Philbin
Matt Philbin
Managing Editor, Culture and Media Institute

Monica continues: “I enjoy the sex and I enjoy being with my mom. During the scenes, I think about how we’re going to be filthy rich.”

Filthy certainly, but the aforementioned Margold isn’t so sure about rich. “The adult industry is not that stupid,” Margold told The Huffington Post. “They have enough problems without creating on-camera incest.”

And thankfully, incest still does pose problems, at least in Connecticut. There, 46-year-old George Sayers Jr. and his daughter, aspiring porn actress Tiffany Hartford, 23, were arrested for “third degree sexual assault, obscenity and conspiracy to commit obscenity,” according to the New York Daily News. Now, this would be just another feel-good story of a dad trying to help his daughter get her career started by filming her having sex with her girlfriend and selling it on the Internet. Except that he wasn’t just filming, and Tiffany has the son/brother to prove it.

Grossed out? Get used to it. These two stories are extreme now but probably not for long. Would HuffPo circa 2016 find the Sexxxtons worth dedicating an article to? A recent Onion headline went “Victoria’s Secret Show a Hit among People Who Don’t Know that Pornography Exists.” It’s funny because it gets at an important truth. To a growing segment of the population, beautiful women strutting provocatively in various states of undress is a yawn — a hint of stocking, as it were.

It’s part of human nature to look for the old illicit thrill, a flash of the forbidden. In a porn-sodden culture where less and less is illicit or forbidden, human nature has to go farther afield to get its kicks. Taboos fall like slow-motion dominoes. A generation ago, it would have been unimaginable that porn would be as mainstream and ubiquitous as it is today. If you really think about, it’s unimaginable that an act like the Sexxxtons will earn even a shrug a generation hence.

So our cultural suicide is moving along at a brisk pace. But at least the porn stars are happy.

Matt Philbin is the managing editor at The Culture and Media Institute.