Ron Jeremy, XXXChurch Pastor Debate Porn Ethics at NYU

Oct 2, 2013 3:30 PM PST

NEW YORK — Last night NYU hosted the campus event “Free Porn? Porn Stars vs. Pastors,” where iconic porn star Ron Jeremy sat down with Craig Gross, pastor for the XXXChurch.com, which seeks to help followers stop watching porn, to discuss the adult industry.

The event was organized by a “city-wide, campus-based, faith-inspired campaign” called The Price of Life: NYC and was intended to address the issue of human trafficking. Based on firsthand accounts, the conversation ultimately focused on the pornography in general, after both Gross and Jeremy conceded that the mainstream adult industry has little connection with human trafficking.

“People don’t want to just put you in jail. They want to kill you for something like that. They’re not going to video it because they’re going to be tracked down that way,” said Jeremy, explaining why legit adult filmmakers wouldn’t involve themselves with underage performers. “Trafficking is more of a prostitution thing, it’s not a porn thing.”

Gross agreed that the “companies in L.A.” wouldn’t produce content with trafficked girls, but offered counterpoints to Jeremy’s pro-porn talking points, including the fact that manufactured erotic adult content creates unrealistic expectations about sex for its viewers.

“These fantasies are not ever going to be reality. What you’re looking at on a screen is never going to happen, or should happen, in your sex life,” he told the audience. Jeremy argued that porn is just another form of escapism, like Star Trek conventions, and should be considered as just another form of entertainment.

Other themes arose, including female empowerment, most searched-for videos, the adult industry’s pay scale and the “barely legal” niche. They even discussed their own sex lives.

“We’re actually very similar,” Jeremy opined. “I do it with a few thousand women, he’s done it with his wife a few thousand times. It’s the same thing.

“Also, you don’t have to have sex when it’s emotional, that was more for my era, the old generations. Like that Meat Loaf song, ‘Paradise by the Dashboard Light.’ With the more recent generation, there’s recreational sex as well. I find cuddling more romantic than sex sometimes.”

The NYU campus paper reported that the event was attended by more than 100 people, some of whom were primarily attracted by an opportunity to see Jeremy, a well known persona, in the flesh.     

Price of Life is holding a follow-up discussion tomorrow.  

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