A BDSM-themed pornography website is offering free membership to all 2,472 delegates to the Republican National Convention in Cleveland next week.
The offer, from San Francisco-based Kink.com, comes in response to an anti-pornography provision in the emerging Republican Party platform for the 2016 elections.
The anti-pornography provision is not new, but the 2016 version of the clause includes the statement that pornography “has become a public health crisis that is destroying the life of millions.”
North Carolina delegate Mary Frances Forrester successfully proposed the amendment in a subcommittee of the platform committee Monday morning.
“The internet must not become a safe haven for predators,” the provision states. “Pornography, with its harmful effects, especially on children, has become a public health crisis that is destroying the life of millions. We encourage states to continue to fight this public menace and pledge our commitment to children’s safety and well-being. We applaud the social networking sites that bar sex offenders from participation. We urge energetic prosecution of child pornography which closely linked to human trafficking.”
The amendment passed with little debate.
The relevant section of the 2012 GOP platform reads:
The Internet must be made safe for children. We call on service providers to exercise due care to ensure that the Internet cannot become a safe haven for predators while respecting First Amendment rights. We congratulate the social networking sites that bar known sex offenders from participation. We urge active prosecution against child pornography, which is closely linked to the horrors of human trafficking. Current laws on all forms of pornography and obscenity need to be vigorously enforced.
Kink.com film director Maitresse Madeleine Marlowe wrote an open letter to Republican delegates detailing the offer. The letter reads, in part:
We read with dismay that the Republican Party platform committee has endorsed a plank declaring “porn a public health crisis” and a “menace.” While it may not fit with your morals, studies have repeatedly shown that access to adult entertainment is positively correlated with decreases in sex crimes, better performance in bed, and more feminist views of women. (We understand that last one might not be a net positive for you, but we like it.)
Next week, you’ll vote to approve or reject that platform, and we want you to have an informed decision. That’s why we’re offering every credentialled Republican delegate free access to our sites from now until November 8.
Marlowe added a message for #NeverTrump delegates — those committed to opposing Trump as the party’s nominee at all costs — inviting them to watch a Trump-themed pornographic film.
Kink.com has been at the forefront of a political fight against the mandatory use of condoms and protective eyewear in adult films made in California. Both political parties have opposed a November referendum that would impose such a mandate on pornography statewide.
Los Angeles County voters passed a similar referendum, Measure B, in 2012, prompting a drastic cutback in local permit applications for adult films, as producers relocated production to other states.