RIP @JasminePetite

Petite Jasmine was murdered, and I am so sad and angry about it that I feel compelled to blog about it. I have said/apologized in my “recent” entries that I haven’t blogged consistently for a while, because I haven’t needed to. I haven’t had a reason, or I haven’t wanted to be repetitive. This blog is my diary, and it has many purposes (one of which has been to be a place to discuss issues that are important to me within the broader context of Adult Entertainment). And now I have realized something that I have completely neglected to discuss: Sex Workers Rights. Not just etiquette. Not just humanizing us. Not just platitudes about respect. But legal RIGHTS.

I have discussed at length the process of dehumanization that often happens. I have spoken about the need for respect.  I been outraged by bad behavior, and blah blah blah. But all of that is just empty words until you put action behind the ideas. There are several Sex Worker Rights activists in my Twitter feed, and I intend to start a conversation with them about what they are doing, how they are organizing, and what progress they are making (which invariably will include stories about tragedy – why does evolution always have to be so goddamned painful and ugly???). Everything has to be a damn revolution. We can’t just do what’s right. No, we always have to suffer through this tortured process of killing women/blacks/LGBT/immigrants/(insert marginalized group here) before they get “equality.”

I started a performance art piece several years ago about being disposable, but never finished it, because I started teaching at some shitty university Winthrop University. At the time in Aiken, SC where I was living before I continued my stint as an educator, there was an ongoing problem where the trash pick up sign for the LGBT community was repeatedly vandalized. So the “This Parkway is Sponsored by the Aiken LGBT Community” sign was being defaced and torn down over and over. The message I got from that is that gays aren’t even worthy of being acknowledged for picking up trash, and that we ourselves are the detritus of society. That we could be thrown away, like so much garbage. And although LGBT “equality” is set to become a reality (who would’ve thought it could have happened in such a sudden surge after so many years of abject bottle-necking obstructionism??), this other aspect of my life has made almost no progress at all. Why is everything I am and do always so… excessive, expendable, minor, needless, nonessential, removable, superfluous, trivial, unimportant, unnecessary, unrequired, and useless?

I may need to pick this performance project back up. My whole life I have been disposable trash. First as a bullied teen, then as a gay man, then as an artist, and now as an Adult Entertainer. I am one of the most awesome muthafuckas on this whole goddamn planet, and it’s ME who is disposable??! FUCK THAT! I and my colleagues are NOT being exploited. We are not uneducated drug addicts tricked into sex slavery. We aren’t desperate. We decided it’s better to get paid well for our own efforts and qualities, rather than be chained to a 9-to-5 existence enriching some white man we’ll never meet. No doubt exploitation happens to some people, and that is absolutely unacceptable. But to conflate victimization with free choice?? That also is unacceptable.

Author: Devon Hunter

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1 Comment

  1. I waited to post a comment until I met you.

    Yes, Devon, you are “one of the most awesome muthafuckas on this whole goddamn planet.”

    You are NOT disposable. You bring laughter and comfort to everyone you meet. If you were not on this planet with us, our lives would be less full.

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