Sex

Porn Star James Deen Is a Raging Libertarian, Hates Affirmative Consent

On Rand Paul: 'I don't vote for absurd people.'

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James Deen
jerone2 / Flickr

James Deen is a "raging, hard-core libertarian." That's according to The Daily Beast's Emily Shire, who interviewed the most famous man in the porn industry about his views on policy, Rand Paul, and affirmative consent.

Reason readers already know Deen to be a foe of California's nanny-state condom laws. But it turns out Deen is firmly in the leave-everybody-alone camp on a bunch of issues:

Deen has long been an outspoken activist against condom laws, and like many in the adult-film community, he grounds his rationale in an aggressive interpretation of First Amendment rights. "I believe in freedom of speech," he says, arguing that mandating condoms and mandating testing, as the heterosexual porn industry does, "both moderate what you're doing with your genitals" and, therefore, are "equivalent to violating performers' civil rights."

But Deen doesn't just want the government to stay out of his pants; he wants it to stay out, period. When I mention he's good at texting and holding eye contact, he launches into an unexpected tirade against texting and driving laws.

"We live in a terrorist country. I text and drive looking over my shoulder, not because I think it is morally wrong. It's because I don't want to get in trouble," Deen says.

That doesn't make Deen a fan of Rand Paul, however. When Shire asked whether the libertarian-leaning Republican would get his vote, Deen said no: "I don't vote for absurd people."

Shire, however, called Deen absurd for voicing strong opposition to "Yes Means Yes" affirmative consent laws. Here's what he said:

"That is the dumbest fucking law I've ever heard of. We already have a law against rape. Just don't fucking rape people," he says, in full-on rant mode. "My mom tried to persuade me on it and told me about the coverups on college campuses," he explains. But in typical libertarian fashion, he doesn't think legislation is the answer. "We can't throw a law at it and think it's going to solve it."

I'm with Deen. Mandating what drunk college students should say to each other before they have sex isn't going to make rape any less prevalent. It will, however, produce more lawsuits, as college administrators struggle to navigate the contradictions of federal anti-rape requirements and established due process.

In any case, he seems like a cool live-and-let-live kind of guy. He studiously refused to trash either Lindsay Lohan or Farrah Abraham—even though Lohan was reportedly rude to him on the set of The Canyons and Abraham tried to trick people into thinking they were dating—and declined to name the reporter who allegedly slept with him.

Shire concludes her interview by suggesting that he could run for office. Hey, that's not the worst idea. As long as the American people are going to be fucked over by the government, we might as well elect someone who knows what he's doing.

Reason TV has more on condom laws in the video below.