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January 24, 2002
I am a Muslim whose family is very conservative. I am afraid of what might happen if a certain relative finds some pornographic home videos I made.
It all started with an older woman I used to date. She thought it would be fun to make sexy videos with a computer webcam. I made several mistakes: I let my face be shown; I kept the videos on my hard drive after we broke up; I let my new girlfriend use my computer. She found the videos and sold them to a porno website.
My girlfriend said she did it because she was jealous, and now she is sorry. I accepted her apology, but what can I do to get my face off the Internet? I wrote to the website, but got no response. If I sue them, it might end up on the news and my family will find out. If I don't sue them, I'm worried that my family and friends will find out anyway. What can I do?
Reluctant Muslim Porn Star
You can break up with your girlfriend for starters. Trust me, RMPS, a girl who would sell her lover's homemade porn videos to an Internet pornographer in a jealous fit shouldn't be trusted around anyone's genitals. Leave her.
Unfortunately, there's not much you can do to get your porn off the Net. "Privacy has no worse enemy than the Internet," said Hillery Nye, an intellectual property lawyer at Preston Gates & Ellis. "Once a piece of information or an image reaches the Internet superhighway, any Tom, Dick, or Harry can download it." Could you sue the site? "Absolutely," said Nye, "You could seek an injunction based on invasion of privacy (which would force the site to take down the video), or sue for damages based on a variety of theories." But even if you sue, and even if you win, porn once posted online lives forever in cyberspace. People have doubtless made copies of the videos already, and they are probably available on dozens of other sites. Even if you sued them all and won, in a year or two the videos would pop back up again.
And it gets worse: "The moment RMPS seeks any sort of redress from the courts, there is a very significant risk that he will lose all anonymity," said Nye. "RMPS needs to face the fact that the damage has already been done."
So what do you do if your family spots the videos? Deny, deny, deny. Tell 'em it's not you, just someone who looks like you, having sex with someone who looks like your ex-girlfriend, in what looks like your old apartment. Never underestimate the ability of a loving family to refuse to accept the obvious.
I think Arab men are HOT! They have the steely eyes, the black hair, the severe chin, and the smooth skin. But can a twentysomething fag get it on with Arab guys without being unpatriotic?
The president of the United States has asked Americans to reach out to Arab Americans. He wants us to show the world that we're fighting a war against terror and not against Islam or Arabs. Some patriotic Americans have heeded the president's call by visiting mosques, others have patronized businesses owned by Arab Americans. Personally, I can't think of a better way for you, a young fag, to reach out to Arab Americans--and help the war effort--than by grabbing your ankles for an Arab. Unpatriotic? Nonsense! You're answering the call of your commander in chief!
I heard that the Arab governments arrest, torture, and kill homosexuals. Is this true? Is the United States doing anything to combat this abuse?
JP in the Sticks
You heard right. Among our allies in this fight for freedom are Egypt and Saudi Arabia. Egypt recently tossed a 15-year-old boy in jail for having gay sex (that should put a stop to his homosexual activities), and sentenced 23 other men to long periods of hard labor for being gay. If that sounds bad, consider the fate of three men in Saudi Arabia who were recently convicted of "marrying amongst themselves": All three men were beheaded--talk about your Defense of Marriage Acts. According to the International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission, the Bush administration hasn't said boo to our Arab allies about these abuses.
First, I'm a 28-year-old straight man, earning 50K a year. I'm also single. My religion was Islam until I realized there is no God. He has some people tortured in Hell for offending Him and yet we call Him the All-Merciful? Human dictators who do similar things are considered barbaric. It makes no sense.
Second, now that I have rejected God, I would like to enjoy my life. To that end, I would like to organize a Wide Eyes Shut club. I would spend 10 percent of my salary to fuck women. My plan is to get a number of young professional men like myself to contribute $400 per month to a special fund. We would use that pot of money to hire porn stars to entertain us.
Third, will you print my e-mail address, so that other men interested in joining my club can contact me?
Leaving God for Sex
First, it was Eyes Wide Shut, not Wide Eyes Shut.
Second, there is nothing in the least bit realistic about that lousy film's absurd portrayal of group sex. Attempting to model your fantasy life on Eyes Wide Shut is only setting yourself up for disappointment.
Third, in an effort to reach out to Arab Americans, I'm publishing your e-mail address. But I think your club is a bad idea. Rejecting God doesn't require you to go off the deep end, nor are you required to adopt Stanley Kubrick's fantasy life as your own. A little self-denial, a little self-indulgence, a little song, a little dance, a little seltzer down the pants--why not lead a balanced life? Why swing from one extreme to the other? If you're anxious to make up for lost time, by all means, hire a few escorts and do some catching up. (Better yet, why not find an open, sexually adventurous girlfriend and spend $5,000 per year on dinners, movies, sex toys, and hotel rooms?) No one should spend all of his time in a mosque, LGFS, I agree. But no one should spend all of his time in a whorehouse either.
Fourth, speaking of whorehouses, I'm really enjoying this Enron stuff. I realize this has nothing to do with your problem, LGFS, or sex, but it's my column: The Enron scandal may not have the schwing of a Clinton scandal--no bimbos or blowjobs--but it does have thieving fat cats, bought-and-paid-for politicians, and thousands of angry, ruined little people. Hopefully the Enron collapse will put an end to the CEO-worship that has plagued American popular culture since Lee Iacocca "saved" Chrysler with taxpayers' money. And while the Enron scandal may not have a come-stained blue dress to recommend it, there is this: Clinton's scandals only proved that he was a letch. The Enron scandal, on the other hand, proves that everyone in Washington--beginning with President Bush--is a fucking whore. Hello, campaign finance reform, goodbye Republican control of the House of Representatives.
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