Mormon Reality Site: A Bellwether for More Religious Porn?
LOS ANGELES — There are plenty of websites that give “sympathy to the Devil” trumpeting evil doings, dark desires and every manner of diabolic activity to stir the prurient interests of those who seek the forbidden lust of porn.
But there’s always been an unwritten rule about adult content not mixing with religion. Sure there are fictitious nuns and priests as subjects of sexual doings — and there was even some gay porn shot in the Vatican. But taking on an established religious body with real members of a particular denomination or church has virtually been off limits. Until recently.
Almost a year ago, gay website MormonBoyz.com debuted under a brief dust-up where the operators believed the Church of Latter Day Saints (LDS —the Mormons) attacked its servers in retribution for soiling its good name by showcasing young Mormon boys having gay sex.
And now a “sister” lesbian site, MormonGirlz — although symbiotic (they share the same 2257 record keeping service) but according to its creator Brooke Hunter —herself a former Mormon — that's not officially produced by the same company has emerged, once again flying in the face of the de facto “no slamming religion” stance adult has always embraced.
As one industry saw so aptly goes, “If a porn company’s dragged into court, it’s one strike for the alleged crime, two that it’s porn, and if religion’s involved — it’s strike three.”
So whether it’s another indication of porn needing to push the limits by being as extreme as it can be in order to grab eyeballs in the over-saturated and often free amount of adult entertainment on the Internet, or another clever marketing ploy (like parodies) that take advantage of popular culture (read the smash hit “The Book of Mormon” Broadway show), is anyone’s guess. But the fact remains that porn is encroaching unabashedly into territory once considered taboo.
Hunter, a photographer by trade (who resides in the Salt Lake City, Utah – the cradle of the LDS), does all of the site’s shooting herself, and admits it’s her first foray into porn. “I'm an ex-Mormon lesbian. I know a ton about the religion and what it's like to be a sister missionary because I did it. I can't imagine feeling that way about another niche so I think this is it for me,” she says.
The idea for the site was actually sparked by her MormonBoyz “friends,” whom Hunter says traveled a similar road, growing up Mormon and then coming out and ultimately leaving the Church. “We also share an erotic attachment to all those innocent Mormons, especially missionaries. “They suggested that I make MormonGirlz and I agreed that it was a good idea.”
Apparently not concerned about her MormonBoyz’s claims about LDS reactionary blowback, nor what was once considered no-man’s territory, Hunter says she’ll just wait and see what the officials of the LDS church have to say about her new site.
She points out that the release of her videos is particularly bad timing for the Church, which has suffered recently from negative press surrounding its exclusion of women from Church leadership and other sexist policies and beliefs. “A group of Mormons calling themselves Ordain Women has staged a series of highly-visible protests this year, and the Church has responded by threatening the organization’s founder with excommunication. The disclosure of sister missionaries engaging in explicit sexual activity is sure to rock the faith to its core,” Hunter believes.
But the real issue of mixing porn with religion barely causes a blip on her radar. She has no problems with her merchant account providers (she uses CCBill) that traditionally have been chargeback-sensitive, especially when it comes to taboo content like blood letting and often religious questions. In fact, Hunter says she created the site for that very reason. “Most religions are very focused on regulating the sex lives of the adherents. They mix all the time, often in a really unhealthy, repressive way. I want to document the sexual liberation of Mormon women and acknowledge the desires and fantasies that Mormon women are often too ashamed to admit,” she says.
Hunter thinks MormonGirlz will open a public conversation about sexual taboos and restrictions within Mormon culture. The Mormon Church forbids homosexuality and masturbation is considered sinful. All sex outside of marriage puts one’s salvation and one’s Church membership at risk, according to the webmaster. “MormonGirlz hopes that images and videos of Mormon girls enjoying various kinds of sex will break some of these taboos and model a healthier attitude toward pleasure. MormonGirlz is on a mission to ‘perfect the saints’ — and to get them off, too.”
Jaded porn professionals of course would laud Hunter’s “outlaw” stance, and social rights activists would cheer her bravado. But cynics no doubt would question the site’s content, asking if the girls are real Mormons or simply a marketing hook? Seasoned webmasters have been faking “reality” content for decades.
But Hunter’s site, that debuted just this month, among myriad lesbian sex acts, shows the girls in their “sacred underwear” (which Mormons are very secretive about) groping, masturbating and washing and anointing each other. “They [Mormons] don’t like to see them on the web. On the other hand, it’s so taboo that it turns a lot of people on. Some of the people who object loudly on message boards are also subscribing to the site.”
The site also has a comprehensive "about" area explaining the girls and their faith and even inludes a blog about the Church and its philosophy.
Hunter unequivocally maintains that the girls on the site are actual or former Mormons and says that anyone who is a Mormon can tell immediately that these girls are, or were, members of the Church.
But what about the rest of us? Hunter explains that some are Mormon girls on missions, some are Mormon girls who are home from their missions but want to replay their relationships or fantasies, and some are ex-Mormons. “It's a real mix. There's no real way to otherwise ‘prove’ it. Mormons are just normal people.”
If true, it begs the question of how she finds and convinces these girls to have sex for everyone to see on the Internet? Hunter believes that her Mormon sisters understand that she feels what they’re going through or what experiences they’ve had, or are having that they want to share because she is very familiar with the strict rules, the obsession with a clean cut and modest physical appearance, the spiritual longing and sexual repression, the guilt, the self-loathing, and the confessions. “All of that makes its way into what I’m interested in filming.”
And breaking the rules is universally sexy, Hunter says. Add religion to the mix and she says things just get hotter. Most Mormons think that porn is inherently evil and porn that depicts Mormons is by nature blasphemous. The LDS doesn’t want to see Mormon women represented in this way, least of all their sweet, hard-working, young sister missionaries, according to Hunter.
Nevertheless, Hunter’s site has helped pierce the veil of what was once considered a bad idea, and considering mainstream society’s more acceptance of porn in general and no apparent resistance from payment processors, flak from religious right organizations or clamp downs by law enforcement, MormonGirlz may be a bellwether for things to come.
Whether we see other “religious reality porn” content being produced is up for grabs, but if the upward chart curve of vanilla-to-extreme porn is any historical indication, who knows what’s down the pike? Real nun’s having sex? Gay hardcore rabbis? Sex in Muslim mosques? Only time — and a few more pioneering content creators – will tell.
Hunter believes religious oppression creates sexy taboos and that demands exploration. She says, “I've heard it said that people go to church to find out how to get to heaven, and people have sex to find out what heaven feels like. In both cases, people are seeking something transcendent, something to fill the void. Or as G.K. Chesterton put it, ‘Every man who knocks on the door of a brothel is looking for God.’”