Don’t Censor Me…A report from the Sex and Censorship protest in London

Posted: 16 March, 2014 in UK Censor News
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sex and censorship protestJerry Barnett, founder of U.K. adult entertainment advocacy group Sex & Censorship, said he was delighted with the turnout at the Don’t Censor Me! protest held in central London today.More than 50 people joined the Sex & Censorship’s organized protest against the Stop Porn Culture conference, including representatives from the English Collective of Prostitutes, the Sex Worker Open University and Queer Strike campaign groups.

At about 3 p.m., adult industry performers, strippers, sex workers, academics, legal professionals and individuals opposed to sexual censorship mounted a peaceful protest outside Wedge House in Southwark, where the Stop Porn Culture conference was taking place.

Led by Stop Porn Culture co-founder and adult industry opponent Gail Dines and English feminist Julie Bindel, the conference aimed to expand the antipornography feminist movement in the U.K., and included speeches from antiporn academic Julia Long and Object campaign officer Sarah Matthewson.

Dines and Bindel appeared outside the venue to debate with the assembled crowd, just after 3 p.m. For about 15 minutes, they gave out free biscuits and Dines spoke with individual attendees, including porn performers Johnny Anglais, aka Benedict Garrett, and Ava Dalush, before returning to the conference.

Sex & Censorship campaigners Jerry Barnett, former porn star Renee Richards and porn performers Edie Lamont and Benedict Garrett were amongst those who addressed the crowd, along with spokespeople from the English Collective of Prostitutes and Queer Strike.

Renee Richards, who had previously rallied fellow performers to support the Sex & Censorship, took Dines to task for her lack of industry knowledge:

Dines and the other so-called feminists at this conference claim all porn has harmful effects. Yet Dines has never stepped on a porn set. I never saw any abuse while working in porn, nor was I abused. What’s more, Coca-Cola and Apple exploit their workers in horrific ways but the women inside this conference venue aren’t boycotting them.

Jerry Barnett, the co-organiser of the Don’t Censor Me protest said.

The anti-sex narrative, the view of a tiny minority, has been dominant for too long in the media, from the Daily Mail to the Guardian. Our message here is that we can make our own choices, we don’t want to be rescued, and we never asked to be.

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