Is it so enticing that one does not mind putting one’s career at risk for the sake of watching pornography? Probably!
Now, let me just say this. I belong to that section of Indian women who consider themselves forward-thinking (always) and honest (most times). Everyone watches porn. You, me. Men, women. Old, young. Everyone. So don’t tsk tsk! Admit it!
Now, let’s start from the beginning. ‘Pornography’ comes from a mid 19th century Greek word pornographos which means ‘writing about prostitutes’. Surely prostitution, supposedly the world’s oldest profession, could not have survived this long if it hadn’t been written about. Even though the jury is still out on whether prostitution is in fact the oldest profession in the world, we now know that the originator of the phrase “the world’s oldest profession” was Rudyard Kipling. (Don’t miss the Indian connection. For the ignorant ones, Rudyard Kipling was born in Bombay). Now, his 1888 story about a prostitute begins like this: “Lalun is a member of the most ancient profession in the world.” (And if you thought he only wrote stories for children, well, so did I. Until now.)
Now, if Henry Kissinger was right about power being the greatest aphrodisiac, our Indian politicians are definitely living it up! Where you might ask do they indulge in watching pornography? In the State Assembly House. No less.
Earlier this February, three Indian politicians resigned after being caught watching porn on a mobile phone during a session of state parliament. Mind you, all three belong to a morally conservative party; at least they claim to be. What is more assuming is the portfolio each of these ministers hold. A regional TV channel’s footage showed Karnataka state Minister for Cooperation Laxman Savadi sharing a porn clip with his colleague CC Patil, the minister for women and child development, while sitting in the state assembly. The owner of the phone was State Minister for Ports, Science and Technology Krishna Palemar.
So as my topsy-turvy mind understands it, Mr. Savadi, true to his vocation (fancy, eh?) as a ‘Cooperation’ minister believes in the good habit of sharing. He shares the said porn clip with none other than a minister for women and children. Undoubtedly, Mr. Patil is making great headway in matters concerning women and children. I like to believe he likes to get to the bottom of things. (No) pun intended! Sadly, for the third minister, he simply forgot how advance (in terms of zoom) the camera technology of news channels is.
So what is the most important thing we learn from this? Well, besides the fact that you could be sacked for something like this, is, as Twitter user @wastrelette puts it: “Buildings of state assembly have excellent Internet speeds.” (Wonder when the rest of us would get that)
Evidently, our politicians did not learn their lesson. Again this Tuesday, News channels broadcast footage showed Shankarbhai Chaudhary allegedly watching porn on a tablet computer with his colleague Jethabhai Bharwad while sitting in the state assembly. This is in the state that has banned alcohol consumption since 1961 as homage to Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi. Wonder what Gandhi would have had to say about this? Celibacy, anyone? Not important but certainly amusing is the fact these ministers belong to the same party as their Karnataka counterparts. Just saying!
However, as a result of further research, I have learnt that such incidents have not been limited to our Indian politicians. Their foreign counterparts have indulged in similar behaviour in the past.
A member of Italian ex PM Silvio Berlusconi’s party, Simeone di Cagno Abbresccia, was caught checking out women on a site for escorts during a parliament session. In his defense, he said he checked his messages and couldn’t help looking the pictures of the lovely girls. “My fingers slipped,” he is quoted to have said. Classic case of butter fingers, eh Minister?
Well, for now it seems that politicians simply cannot resist the lure of pornography. If you thought it ends here, read on.
Ilona Staller is the most famous of all porn stars-turned-politicians. The Hungary-born Ilona Staller was elected as a member of the Italian parliament in 1987. Treading the porn to politics path followed by a few other Italian porn actresses, Milly D’Abbraccio ran for a seat in Rome’s city council in 2008. Must say, Italy definitely holds a deep connection there.
Marey Carey, who started her porn career with Playboy TV, contested the 2003 gubernatorial (relating to a governor) elections in California as a publicity stunt (Oh really! I thought otherwise #sarcasm). That’s not the awesome part. She in fact polled 11,179 votes and came tenth in a 135-candidate race. Furthermore, she also plans to contest for the post of the President of the United States in 2016.
Best known for her debut in the cult 1972 porn film ‘Behind the Green Door’, Marilyn Chamber famously contested for the Vice President of the United States on the Personal Choice Party ticket. Later, she also contested in the 2008 US presidential election. Oh the beauty of American politics! (And I long held the belief that Indian politics was the most entertaining)
Well, since both politics and pornography elicit public interest (clearly, since you are still reading this) and controversy, we were naïve to think, “Never the twain shall meet” (Going back to Rudyard Kipling). I believe that the 40th US President Ronald Reagan was only half-joking when he uttered the prophetic words: “Politics is supposed to be the second-oldest profession. I have come to realize that it bears a very close resemblance to the first.”