If you're done gagging on your utter disgust let's move on to some finer points about this new chapter, eh? If you read the comments on TMZ (because why be satisfied with only boiling rage when you could totz escalate to white hot) many interneters are already calling for the state to come repo her kids 'cause being in porn makes you an "unfit" parent. Let's first ignore the fact that she has yet to even reply to Vivid, much less make a video. Also of note, the idea that being involved in sex work or porno makes you an unfit parent is, uh, not legally accurate, nor real fucking life accurate. (To aid in learning what child abuse actually is and how someone can for real get their kids taken from them, I'm including this link to DC's Child Protective Services page. And let me add that "exposure to" means making them watch/look at it, not family involvement.)
So people already hate Nadya Suleman for a variety of reasons (drain on society! crazy! bad mother! unnatural! poor! and the list goes on...). Most upsetting to me is the feminist backlash, seen most grotesquely over at Bitch, where many commenters were playing fast and loose with what reproductive choice meant to them:
I want to just scream it: just because you can have babies doesn't mean you should! It's a grave thing. There's a whole lot you can fuck up here. And yeah, poor women having children have been bullied by the media way too much and have been judged unfairly. So it's hard to come right out and say, Listen lady, what you are doing is asinine and irresponsible. But I can't support this kind of behavior. It's stupid.That's right, pro-choice is all about choosing abortion, not the choice to decide the size of your family, psssh. So I'm thinking that if some feminists are willing to throw their values under a bus at the sight of 14 kids (!!!) and join all the other aforementioned haters the response to this will-she-won't-she porno debacle is going to be ugly. Keeping in mind of course, that unlike being pro-choice, being for or against the sex work industry divides us feminists like nothin' else. (Sweet how we do it to ourselves, huh? Who even needs republicans at this point?)
Personal opinions about how responsible she is aside, let's pop on our feminist lens and examine how she was persecuted for her choice to expand her family and think about how her choice to be in porno will be treated. Please note my astute use of italics for the word "choice," because I think this entire ordeal perfectly illustrates a major problem with how people view women's involvement in sex work and what kinds of choices women have for lucrative work. Let's assume that "Octopussy" is the only offer she has right now to make gobs of money. With everyone bitching left and right about her irresponsible broke-ass sucking money from the taxpayers (right from your hardworking Joe-the-Plumber pockets!) this million dollar venture would look like a great idea to get the bucks she needs to support her family for life and perhaps quiet the death threats for a bit. Nope! Everyone hates porn too, so now she's a huge child abusing whore, even though this was her best opportunity to make money like everyone wanted.
I think there are women who choose different kinds of sex work for their own pleasure or interest, but often it's a monetary fueled decision, a decision they technically chose, but from what list of options? I make about 35k a year and I've had my BA for years. I'm not entry level, but it's hard to make a lot more in non-profit work. If I was faced with 1 million dollars upfront for one sex video and 30k spread over a year...totally tempting even though I don't reeeaally want to do something like that. But with the stakes so high, it's no longer a balanced choice, especially if I'm in debt, or trying to get car repairs, or catch up on rent, and even less balanced if I had 14 babies. When the options are limited to little or no money and heaps and heaps of money, what options are there really?
Honestly, I don't think Ms. Suleman would take Vivid's offer anyways, the outcry would be deafening, and she's in a unique position to make some dough with other non-gangbang projects (though probably not millions, + health care, dental, etc). Though, I think it's important to pay attention to the angry mob that is being created. Tearing this woman down for her reproductive choice because it was deemed that she is too broke for kids, and now furthering the cry to arms by blaming her involvement in a porno that she doesn't technically have anything to do with as of yet - even though it would make her plenty of money to take care of her family and no longer be the dreaded "drain on the system." Seriously, what do we want from this woman?
Most importantly, if everyone is going to get so damn mad, why don't we direct our anger at the fact that women can make 1 million bucks fucking for 88 minutes but have no other ways to make that much money that fast. We could even take it down a notch since a million is kind of a ridiculous sum, but what about a thousand? A friend of mine dances, and she makes almost a thousand dollars a night. At the end of the week she could pay off my credit card that I've been struggling to make minimum payments on forever. In no other profession can women make such large sums money as quickly. So get frustrated not at the women making their living, but at the society that allows this money monopoly to happen even as they condemn it.
And everything else aside, I just want to reiterate my sentiment from the first paragraph again. Vivid Entertainment, and TMZ you are disgusting fucking asshats.