Why Are There So Many Jews In Porn?

Peter Myers writes:

Lasha, Jews & Porn – a reply to Mitch Medina

Lasha’s mistake was to overstate her case. She said (or rather implied) “All” instead of “Most”.

This allowed Mitch Medina (in ShamirReaders) to list some non-Jews in pornography – Hugh Hefner, Madonna et al – and say that Lasha’s claim that Jews invented pornography in America is preposterous.

But Luke Ford, a convert to Judaism, who ran porn sites and studied Hollywood at close range, wrote “Secular Jews dominate the production and distribution of porn” (item 7).

Futher, that, “The big machers [in the pornography] industry are Jewish” (item 6).

In rejecting Porn, we should not go to the other, “wowser”, extreme. There is a middle path.

(1) Hefner was just Playboy’s WASP public face; Jewish editors worked behind the scenes
(2) ADL presented Hefner with its first “Torch of Freedom” award
(3) Luke Ford, writer on Jews, Hollywood & Porn – raised SDA, but converted to Judaism
(4) Rabbi Dresner on Hollywood encouraging young people to rebel
(5) Rabbi Daniel Lapin: American distress over their deteriorating culture & the role of Jews
(6) Luke Ford, author of 100 Years of Sex in Films: The big machers [in the pornography] industry are Jewish
(7) Luke Ford’s webpage Jews in Porn: Secular Jews dominate the production and distribution of porn
(8) Jewish involvement in Porn – “two fingers to the entire WASP establishment”
(9) Madonna’s conversion to Judaism

(1) Hefner was just Playboy’s WASP public face; Jewish editors worked behind the scenes


My Son, the Pornographer


Tablet Magazine – a new read on Jewish life

Feb 24, 2010

My Son, the Pornographer

By the 1960s, Playboy and its founder had become household names. But while Hugh Hefner was out making his brand synonymous with the good life, a team of Jewish editors made his magazine one of the liveliest, sexiest, and most progressive reads around.

… If a magazine’s history can be divided into eras, the 1960s should be remembered as Playboy’s Jewish decade. Those were the years in which a cadre of young Jewish editors, including Lehrman, reinvigorated the publication, embracing and fomenting the sexual revolution. Yet Playboy has often been thought of as an essentially WASP phenomenon, because Hefner, the magazine’s founder, served back then, and always, as Playboy’s public face — and also because, thanks to neurotic icons like Alexander Portnoy and Alvy Singer, it has been difficult to imagine nice Jewish boys convincing a different perky co-ed to strip her clothes off every month. …

(2) ADL presented Hefner with its first “Torch of Freedom” award

Catholic News Watch

November 15, 2006

Mark Alessio


In 1980, the ADL presented pornography pioneer Hugh Hefner with its first “Torch of Freedom” award, praising the Playboy founder’s “unique idea for a magazine and a philosophy of social change” and his “far-reaching impact, not only on the publishing industry, but on the mores of American society as well.”

A June 7, 2006 press release announced that the ADL was “pleased that the Senate could not muster enough votes to approve the so-called ‘Marriage Protection Amendment’.” The ADL, which had previously written to Senators urging them to reject any constitutional amendment banning “gay” marriage, also expressed “dismay that the Senate would even attempt to vote on a measure that would discriminate against gay Americans.”

(3) Luke Ford, writer on Jews, Hollywood & Porn – raised SDA, but converted to Judaism

Rabbi Dresner’s Dilemma: Torah v. Ethnos

by E. Michael Jones

May, 2003 issue of Culture Wars magazine


Luke Ford

Luke Ford was raised as a Seventh Day Adventist in Australia. He came to Los Angeles to study and after coming down with chronic fatigue syndrome, spent his time in convalescence listening to Dennis Prager’s radio program. As a result of listening to Prager, he converted to orthodox Judaism. Since Los Angeles is the center of the pornography industry and since Ford was also interested in pornography, he noticed that Jews dominate the porn industry in Hollywood and decided to discuss the issue on his website, lukeford.com (Since this discussion – and perhaps because of it – lukeford.com has been taken over by the porn industry. Luke Ford’s lucubrations on things Jewish, things pornographic, and things in general are now available only at lukeford.net) Luke Ford noticed that ‘secular Jews play a disproportionate role throughout the sex industry’:

(4) Rabbi Dresner on Hollywood encouraging young people to rebel

Jones’ article is a review of Rabbi Dresner’s book Can Families Survive in Pagan America? This is a book about the destructive role of secular Jews.

Jones writes:


If ‘the traditional family is under siege’ in America, it is largely because of the influence of what Dresner calls ‘the Hollywood crowd,’ a group of people who praise ‘rebellion, self-fulfillment, and promiscuity’ and a ‘debased view of the human body and spirit’ which finds acceptance by ‘none of the great religions of the world – and certainly not Judaism.’ The Hollywood film, according to Dresner, has become a ‘school from which one neither graduates nor needs to leave home to attend.’ That school had a profound effect on American attitudes and behavior in the second half of the 20th century. According to Dresner, any study of the films which got produced from 1945 to 1985 would reveal ‘a radical shift in values,’ one which turned the world upside down. ‘Hollywood came to adopt a permissive, value-free attitude in the course of a few decades,’ and when it went down the drain, it dragged the rest of America with it. ‘The underground has taken over. … the avant-garde has become the man on the street. Bohemia is Broadway. The filthy jokes formerly restricted to burlesque houses and certain nightclubs’ are now available on ‘films and TV for the millions. Las Vegas is no longer a city but a condition’ (pp. 316-7). Hollywood, in short, got corrupted around 1945 and is now responsible for the moral decline of American culture. …

Today about two-thirds of leading TV and movie producers are Jewish. Four of the five companies that dominate American entertainment are run by Jews (Gerald Levin, who once considered a rabbinic career, runs Time Warner, Michael Eisner runs Disney, Mel Karmazin and Sumner Redstone run Viacom-CBS, and the Bronfmans run Universal).

This fact is rarely discussed in the mainstream media because Jews control that as well.

(5) Rabbi Daniel Lapin: American distress over their deteriorating culture & the role of Jews

Jewish Tribal Review offers this:

Pornography, drugs, Hollywood, and Jewish influence upon the values of mass culture

from When Victims Rule. A Critique of Jewish Pre-eminence in America


Not even focusing on the Hollywood world, in 1999, Rabbi Daniel Lapin wrote an extraordinarily unusual, and stunning, appraisal of the collective negative effects of the modern Jewish community upon the values of America: “My firm conviction is that we must engage in an honest exploration of the problems and shortcomings of the Jewish community and Jewish communal leadership. Instead of focusing on imagined enemies, we should ask whether dogmatic commitment to a secular-liberal vision is encouraging dislike for the Jewish community. Without such honest self-appraisal, Jews will become more and more disliked — not by crazed individuals but by decent Americans distressed over their rapidly deteriorating culture and the role of Jews in that agenda. It cannot escape the notice of ordinary Americans coping with the challenge of raising responsible children in a hostile world that many Jewish names and groups lead the fight for policies these Americans see as causing the country’s decline.” [LAPIN, D., 1999, p. 42] …

(6) Luke Ford, author of 100 Years of Sex in Films: The big machers [in the pornography] industry are Jewish

continued at the above webpage http://www.jewishtribalreview.org/porn.htm

In 1999, the Village Voice interviewed Luke Ford, author of A History of X: 100 Years of Sex in Films and a convert, of all things, to Judaism. “Publishers Weekly ” Ford said, “took me to task for that ‘offensive generalization’ about Jews but it’s true. The big machers [in the pornography] industry are Jewish — Steve Hirsch, Paul Fishbein (who runs and publishes Adult Video News), and David Sturman, who owns [production company] Sin City.” [BUNN, March 3-9, 99] Fishbein, notes the Los Angeles Times, is the “editor and publisher of the Van Nuys-based trade magazine Adult Video News, generally considered the authoritative guide to the $9 billion U.S. sex business … Fishbein became a [porn] industry spokesman and advocate, a role he has retained to this day.” [COLLINS, S., 7-8-99, p. C1] As Jewish scholar Jay Gertzman notes: “David Hebditch and Nick Anning, researching the pornography business in the mid-1980s, report that ‘some industry insiders claim that porn in the United States is essentially a Jewish business.'” “If this is so,” adds Gertzman, with a little spin control for Jewish economic endeavors, “it is because Jews have for a very long time cultivated the temperament and talents of the middlemen, and they are proud of these abilities.” [GERTZMAN, J., 2000, p. 289]

In his book, Ford goes further, pointing to a strong Jewish influence across American culture that helped swing open the doors to increased sexual permissiveness, an overhaul of traditional moralities, and, ultimately, increased popular tolerance of pornography, noting that “Those who pushed America to a more liberal view of sex were mainly male non-Jewish Jews (Jews alienated from Judaism and Jewish life as well as the Christian culture embraced by a majority of Americans) including Samuel Roth of the 1957 Supreme Court case [that tested laws concerning the depiction of sexuality]; Grove Press publisher Barney Rossett; the owner of Olympia Press, Maurice Girodias, and his father, Jack Kahane, a Paris publisher and author of sexually explicit novels; comedian Lenny Bruce; filmmakers Russ Meyer, David Friedman, and Randy Metzger; Austrian psychiatrist Wilhelm Reich; Screw publisher Al Goldstein; Eros publisher Ralph Ginzburg [Ginzburg served time in prison on obscenity charges for his magazine Eros; he later became editor and publisher of Moneysworth)] [GREENBERG, M., p. 54; his publications Blue Ball and Intercourse were mailed from the conservative Pennsylvania Dutch area: GERTZMAN, J., 2000, p. 287] ]; publisher Edward Mishkin; Jack Valenti, president of the Motion Picture Association of America; defense lawyer Stanley Fleishman; Playboy playmate and Hugh Hefner’s ex-lover Barbara Klein (aka Barbie Benton); Hefner’s personal secretary, Bobbie Arnstein; philosopher Herbert Marcuse; psychologist Albert Ellis; authors Philip Roth, William Styron, and Norman Mailer; and Supreme Court Justice Abe Fortas. They carried on a hundred-year history of radical Jews challenging the reigning order.” [FORD, p. 21] (Ford’s above list, however, is wrong on at least one count: William Styron isn’t Jewish. It’s not hard to understand, however, where the error came from. As Truman Capote once noted about Styron’s presence in the Jewish literary establishment, “if ever there was a goy Yid, it’s Bill Styron.”) [VOLKMAN, p. 96] ==

You can buy a second-hand copy of Luke Ford’s book at http://used.addall.com/
or https://www.abebooks.com/

(7) Luke Ford’s webpage Jews in Porn: Secular Jews dominate the production and distribution of porn

Luke Ford had a webpage Jews in Porn.

It was at http://www.lukeford.com/subjects/content/jews_in_porn.html

But lukeford.com is now a porn website.

His new site is http://www.lukeford.net/

Most of his essays are at http://www.lukeford.net/essays/

eg Hollywood’s Homosexual Mafia

Hollywood Jews

Rabbinic Sex Abuse

Some of Luke Ford’s essays are also at http://www.lukeisback.com/essays/essays/

However his webpage on Jews in Porn is at none of those sites.

One might think that it’s nowhere to be found.

… but it’s at the Internet Archive: http://web.archive.org/web/*/http://lukeford.com/subjects/content/jews_in_porn.html

I suggest that you save a copy, dear Reader. It was archived many times, but does not seem to have changed during that time.

The following version was archived on December 16, 2000:



Secular Jews dominate the production and distribution of porn. Just like they’ve had a disproportionate role in the “white slave trade,” and other forms of sex commerce.

In his 1992 book “Oh Canada! Oh Quebec! Requiem for a Divided Country,” Mordacai Richler writes about Jew hatred in Quebec: The late Abbe Lionel Groulx, patron saint of the sovereignty advocates, is revealed as an admirer of Mussolini who wrote in 1954 that Jews have “a natural passion for money” and could “be found behind all businesses, all shady enterprises, all the pornography operations. . . .”

Leading modern Jewish pornographers include Ron Braverman, John Bone, Wesley Emerson, Paul Fishbein, Herbert Feinberg AKA Mickey Fine, Hank Weinstein, Lenny Friedlander, Bobby Hollander, Rubin Gottesman, Fred Hirsch and his children Steve and Marci, Paul “Norman” Apstein, Steve Orenstein, Jack Richmond (Legend CEO), Theodore Rothstein, Reuben and David Sturman, Ron Sullivan, Jerome Tanner, Armand Weston, Sam and Mitch Weston (Spinelli).

Jews accounted for most of the leading male performers of the 1970s and ’80s. Hebrew studs include Buck Adams, Bobby Astyr, (Bobby Charles) R. Bolla (Robert Kerman), Jerry Butler (Paul Siderman), Seymore Butts (Adam Glasser), Roger Caine (Al Levitsky), David Christopher (Bernie Cohen), Steve Drake, Jesse Eastern, Jamie Gillis (Jamie Gurman), Ron Jeremy (Hyatt), Michael Knight, William Margold, Ashley Moore (Steve Tucker), David Morris, George Payne, Ed Powers (Mark Arnold aka Mark Krinski), Harry Reems (Herbert Streicher), Dave Ruby, Herschel Savage (Harvey Cowen), Carter Stevens (Mal Warub), Marc Stevens, Paul Thomas (Phil Tobias), Marc Wallice (Marc Goldberg), Randy West (Andy Abrams) and Jack Wrangler.

A Jewish male performer writes Luke: “Why are most of the men that do porno Jewish? JEWISH MOTHERS!

“Jewish men are taught to respect women and help them (very codependent)… They also are nonthreathening to most women. Let’s face it, Ron Jeremy is not exactly Mike Tyson… You’ll usually find that the real mean bastards (physically violent) in the industry are NOT Jewish (that includes, producers, directors, boyfriends, agents, etc). Jewish guys are more manipulative….”

Jewish female performers include Avalon, Jenny Baxter (Jenny Wexler), Busty Belle (Tracy Praeger), Chelsea Blake, Tiffany Blake, Bunny Bleu (Kim Warner), J.R. Carrington, Lee Carroll (Leslie Barris), Blair Castle/Brooke Fields (Allison Shandibal), Courtney/Natasha/Eden (Natasha Zimmerman), Daphne (Daphne Franks), Barbara Dare (Stacy Mitnick), April Diamond, Jeanna Fine, Alexis Gold, Terri Hall, Heather Hart, Nina Hartley (Hartman), C.J. Laing (Wendy Miller), Frankie Leigh (Cynthia Hope Geller), Gloria Leonard, Traci Lords (Nora Louise Kuzma), Amber Lynn, Tonisha Mills, Melissa Monet, Susan Nero, Scarlett O. (Catherine Goldberg), Tawny Pearl (Susan Pearlman), Nina Preta, Tracey Prince, Raylene, Janey Robbins (Robin Lieberman), Mila Shegol, Alexandra Silk, Susan Sloan, Annie Sprinkle (Ellen Steinberg), Karen Summer (Dana Alper), Cindy West, Zara Whites (Amy Kooiman) and Ona Zee (Ona Simms).

If the Torah [Pentateuch] commands Jews “to be a kingdom of priests and a holy nation,” and Judaism strongly opposes porn, why do Jews dominate porn?

The main answer is simple. Jews in porn, like most Jews in academia, media and entertainment, are Jewish in name only. They do little in Jewish life, rarely belong to a synagogue and ignore the Torah. Neither rooted in their own tradition or in that of the majority Christian tradition, they live in a community of rebels.

Why does porn attract so many non-Jewish Jews?

· Used to hatred from society, Jews will do its dirty work – such as money lending in the Middle Ages or porn today – to make money. Persecuted for millennia in the various societies they’ve lived in, many Jews developed an allegiance to their own survival as their highest value and care little about the survival of the persecuting society. Even when Jews live in a society that welcomes them instead of harassing them, many Jews hate the majority culture.

· Because Jews frequently despise the majority culture, and despite being traditional in most of their values and rituals, Jews seem open to new ways of doing business. Not rooted in the status quo that frequently hates them, Jews often lead the way in the application of new technology – such as printing presses, radio, TV, cable television, VCRs and computers. And the most popular application of new technology for millennia has been porn.

· Because of Judaism’s emphasis on education and verbal dexterity, Jews dominate academia, entertainment and media generally.

· Belonging to the “Chosen Ones” brings self-confidence, and it takes a strong sense of self to thrive in an industry like porn that is disdained by the public. Male performers particularly need confidence to achieve on camera erections.

Pornographer Seymore Butts attributes the large number of Jews in porn to the desire for profits. “Jews gravitate towards money.

“We’re smart people who’ve been persecuted throughout time. The weak of our people were weeded out. The strong-willed Jews survived…from Egypt to Germany.

“Blacks, for instance, are athletically superior (more muscle fiber per square inch of flesh) because they were bred that way. We killed the weak ones off. The ones that survived were the big ones, the fast ones, the strongest ones, the fighters, the ones that could work the most, with the biggest cocks… Jews same thing. We network, the one thing that blacks don’t do. They’re still killing each other. We support each other. The worst that we will do is sue each other.

“If four people compete for a job, and three of them are goyim [non-Jews], the Jew, all things being equal, will get the job. That’s the way I work. If I’ve got three actors going for a part, and one of them is Jewish, and they’re all in the same ballpark… Sue me.”

In his 2000 book “Bookleggers and Smuthounds: The Trade In Erotica 1920-1940,” English professor Jay Gertzman writes about the disproportionate influence of Jews in the sex book trade: “This irrepressible insistence, seen as characteristic of Jewish merchants in particular, and of ethnic middlemen minorities in general, helped confer pariah status on the erotic book dealers. Here, the one-hundred-percent moralist warned, was a tightly knit group of workers single-mindedly driven to material success, an apparently autonomous minority that had chosen to pursue its own “godless, unAmerican” goals with a strange and foreign intensity. When added to the disreputable nature of the business, as attested to by the denunciations of various authority figures, and by police action against the “promoters,” as postal inspectors termed them, the identity of the erotica distributor as clannish – employing “their own kind” – and aloof – with their own, ethnic, allegiances – became fixed. Here was a kind of “parasite” with whom one would, on occasion, itch to deal, but would remain chary of trusting, especially because the dealer was so good at what he did.” (pg. 41)

Jews participating in the sex trade are not behaving Jewishly. They’re acting in a manner contrary to everything Jewish – the Torah, Israel, God, synagogue and everything the Jewish tradition considers holy.

But to be a Jew, you simply have to be born of a Jewish mother, just as you automatically become an American if you are born to American parents. A Jew can hate Judaism and Israel, Moses and the Torah, and still be a Jew. His values aren’t Jewish but he’s still a member of the people Israel. To be a Christian, by contrast, one must affirm Christ.

This explains how Jews can live un-Jewish lives.

While few Jews are radical, many radicals (and pornographers) are Jews. Writes non-Jew Ernest van den Haag in his book The Jewish Mystique, “Out of one hundred Jews, five may be radicals, but out of ten radicals, five are likely to be Jewish.”

Virtually all movements to change the world come from the Jews – Christianity, secular humanism, Marxism, Socialism and Communism, feminism, and the labor movement. That’s part of the reason that Jews are hated. The world doesn’t want to be changed.

Rooted in nothing, radical Jews frequently seek to make others equally rootless by tearing down their religious, national, communal and traditional allegiances. Such Jews carry on the traditional Jewish hatred of false gods but without offering anything to replace the scorned allegiances.

Jewish domination of porn, banking, entertainment, media and academia does not lead to discrimination against gentiles – most radical Jews marry Gentiles. Nor does it lead to flattering portraits of Jews, as Jews abound in self-criticism. Rather, the most important result of the domination of non-Jewish Jews in these fields is their war on traditional values. Porn is just one expression of this rebellion against standards, against the disciplined life of obedience to Torah that marks a Jew living Judaism. …

(8) Jewish involvement in Porn – “two fingers to the entire WASP establishment”


Jews & Porn

>From The Jewish Quarterly:

Sun, September 18th 2005 – 14th Elul, 5765

Triple-exthnics Nathan Abrams on Jews in the American porn industry

Nathan Abrams | Winter 2004 – Number 196

A story little told is that of Jews in Hollywood’s seedier cousin, the adult film industry. Perhaps we’d prefer to pretend that the ‘triple-exthnics’ didn’t exist, but there’s no getting away from the fact that secular Jews have played (and still continue to play) a disproportionate role throughout the adult film industry in America. Jewish involvement in pornography has a long history in the United States, as Jews have helped to transform a fringe subculture into what has become a primary constituent of Americana. These are the ‘true blue Jews’.

Smut peddlers

Jewish activity in the porn industry divides into two (sometimes overlapping) groups: pornographers and performers. Though Jews make up only two per cent of the American population, they have been prominent in pornography. Many erotica dealers in the book trade between 1890 and 1940 were immigrant Jews of German origin. According to Jay A. Gertzman, author of Bookleggers and Smuthounds:The Trade in Erotica, 1920-1940 (Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 1999), ‘Jews were prominent in the distribution of gallantiana [fiction on erotic themes and books of dirty jokes and ballads], avant-garde sexually explicit novels, sex pulps, sexology, and flagitious materials’.

In the postwar era, America’s most notorious pornographer was Reuben Sturman, the ‘Walt Disney of Porn’. According to the US Department of Justice, throughout the 1970s Sturman controlled most of the pornography circulating in the country. Born in 1924, Sturman grew up in Cleveland’s East Side. Initially, he sold comics and magazines, but when he realized sex magazines produced twenty times the revenue of comic books, he moved exclusively into porn, eventually producing his own titles and setting up retail stores. By the end of the 1960s, Sturman ranked at the top of adult magazine distributors and by the mid-70s he owned over 200 adult bookstores. Sturman also introduced updated versions of the traditional peepshow booth (typically a dark room with a small colour TV on which the viewer can view X-rated videos). It was said that Sturman did not simply control the adult-entertainment industry; he was the industry. Eventually he was convicted of tax evasion and other crimes and died, disgraced, in prison in 1997. His son, David, continued running the family business.

The contemporary incarnation of Sturman is 43-year-old Jewish Clevelander Steven Hirsch, who has been described as ‘the Donald Trump of porno’. The link between the two is Steve’s father, Fred, who was a stockbroker-cum-lieutenant to Sturman. Today Hirsch runs the Vivid Entertainment Group, which has been called the Microsoft of the porn world, the top producer of ‘adult’ films in the US. His specialty was to import mainstream marketing techniques into the porn business. Indeed, Vivid parallels the Hollywood studio system of the 1930s and 1940s, particularly in its exclusive contracts to porn stars who are hired and moulded by Hirsch. Vivid was the subject of a behind-the-scenes reality TV show recently broadcast on Channel 4.

Nice Jewish girls and boys

Jews accounted for most of the leading male performers as well as a sizeable number of female stars in porn movies of the 1970s and ’80s. The doyen of the Hebrew studs is Ron Jeremy. Known in the trade as ‘the Hedgehog’, Jeremy is one of America’s biggest porn stars. The 51-year-old Jeremy was raised in an upper-middle-class Jewish family in Flushing, Queens, and has since appeared in more than 1,600 adult movies, as well as directing over 100. Jeremy has achieved iconic status in America, a hero to males of all ages, Jewish and gentile alike – he’s the nebbischy, fat, hairy, ugly guy who gets to bed dozens of beautiful women. He presents an image of a modern-day King David, a Jewish superstud who supersedes the traditional heroes of Jewish lore. No sallow Talmud scholar he. His stature was recently cemented with the release of a pornomentary about his life, Porn Star: The Legend of Ron Jeremy. As probably the most famous Jewish male porn star, Jeremy has done wonders for the psyche of Jewish men in America. Jeremy has also just released a compilation CD, Bang-A-Long-With Ron Jeremy. For £7.99 (including delivery), the lucky listener gets to enjoy Jeremy’s hand-picked favourite porno grooves along with narration by ‘the legend’ himself. As the publicity blurb gushes, ‘Out of the brown paper wrappings and into the mainstream’.

Seymore Butts, aka Adam Glasser, is everything that Jeremy is not: young, handsome and toned. Glasser, a 39-year-old New York Jew, opened a gym in 1991 in Los Angeles. When no one joined, he borrowed a video camera for 24 hours, went to a nearby strip club, recruited a woman, then headed back to his gym and started shooting. Although the movie stank, with a bit of chutzpah and a few business cards he wangled a deal with a manufacturer and started cranking out films. Within a few years, ‘Seymore Butts’ – his nom de porn which is simultaneously his sales pitch – became one of the largest franchises in the adult-film business. As the king of the gonzo genre (marked by handheld cameras, the illusion of spontaneity and a low-tech aesthetic meant to suggest reality), he is today probably the most famous Jewish porn mogul. Seymore Inc., his production company, releases about 36 films annually, most of them shot for less than $15,000, each of them grossing more than 10 times that sum. Glasser employs 12 people, including his mother and cousin Stevie as respectively genial company accountant (and matchmaker for her single son) and lovable but roguish general gopher. Glasser currently even has his own reality TV show (also broadcast on Channel 4), a ten-episode docu-soap called Family Business, whose opening credits show Glasser’s barmitzvah photo.

In search of a buck

Jews became involved in the porn industry for much the same reasons that their co-religionists became involved in Hollywood. They were attracted to an industry primarily because it admitted them. Its newness meant that restrictive barriers had not yet been erected, as they had in so many other areas of American life. In porn, there was no discrimination against Jews. During the early part of the twentieth century, an entrepreneur did not require large sums of money to make a start in the film business; cinema was considered a passing fad. In the porn business, it was similarly straightforward to get going. To show ‘stag’ movies or loops, as they were known, all one needed was a projector, screen and a few chairs. Not tied up with the status quo and with nothing to lose by innovation, Jews were open to new ways of doing business. Gertzman explains that

“Jews, when they found themselves excluded from a field of endeavour, turned to a profession in which they sensed they could eventually thrive by cooperating with colleagues in a community of effort . . . Jews have for a very long time cultivated the temperament and talents of middlemen, and they are proud of these abilities”.

The adult entertainment business required something that Jews possessed in abundance: chutzpah. Early Jewish pornographers were marketing geniuses and ambitious entrepreneurs whose toughness, intelligence and boundless self-confidence were responsible for their successes.

Of course, the large number of Jews in porn were mainly motivated by the desire to make profits. Just as their counterparts in Hollywood provided a dream factory for Americans, a blank screen upon which the Jewish moguls’ visions of America could be created and projected, so the porn-moguls displayed a talent for understanding public tastes. What better way to provide the stuff of dreams and fantasies than through the adult-entertainment industry? Performers did porn for the money. As ADL National Director Abraham H. Foxman commented, ‘Those Jews who enter the pornography industry have done so as individuals pursuing the American dream.’


The ADL gave Hugh Hefner their “Torch of Freedom” award for so “bravely” exercising his First Amendment “rights” to be a sleazebag.

Secular sex

Like their mainstream counterparts, Jews who enter porn do not usually do so as representatives of their religious group. Most of the performers and pornographers are Jewish culturally but not religiously. Many are entirely secular, Jews in name only. Sturman, however, identified as a Jew – he was a generous donator to Jewish charities – and performer Richard Pacheco once interviewed to be a rabbinical student.

Very few, if any, porn films have overtly Jewish themes, although Jeremy once tried to get several Jewish porn stars together to make a kosher porn film. The exception is Debbie Duz Dishes, in which Nina Hartley plays a sexually insatiable Jewish housewife who enjoys sex with anyone who rings the doorbell. It has sold very well, spawned a couple of sequels and is currently very hard to buy – perhaps indicating a new niche to exploit. Indeed, according to an editorial on the World Union of Jewish Students website,

“there are thousands of people searching for Jewish porn. After things like Jewish calendar, Jewish singles, Jewish dating, and Jewish festivals comes ‘Jewish porn’ in the list of top search keywords that GoTo.com provide”.

Sexual rebels

Is there a deeper reason, beyond the mere financial, as to why Jews in particular have become involved in porn? There is surely an element of rebellion in Jewish X-rated involvement. Its very taboo and forbidden nature serves to make it attractive. As I written in these pages before, treyf signifies ‘the whole world of forbidden sexuality, the sexuality of the goyim, and there all the delights are imagined to lie . . .’ (‘Reel Kashrut: Jewish food in film’, JQ 189 [Spring 2003]).

According to one anonymous industry insider quoted by E. Michael Jones in the magazine Culture Wars (May 2003), ‘the leading male performers through the 1980s came from secular Jewish upbringings and the females from Roman Catholic day schools’. The standard porn scenario became as a result a Jewish fantasy of schtupping the Catholic shiksa.

Furthermore, as Orthodox Jew and porn gossipmonger Luke Ford explains on his website (lukeford.net): ‘Porn is just one expression of [the] rebellion against standards, against the disciplined life of obedience to Torah that marks a Jew living Judaism.’ It is also a revolt against (often middle-class) parents who wish their children to be lawyers, doctors and accountants. As performer Bobby Astyr put it on the same website, ‘It’s an “up yours” to the uncles with the pinky rings who got down on me as a kid for wanting to be musician.’

As religious influences waned and were replaced by secular ones, free-thinking Jews, especially those from California’s Bay Area, viewed sex as a means of personal and political liberation. America provided the freest society Jews have ever known, as manifested by the growth of the adult industry. Those Jewish women who have sex onscreen certainly stand in sharp contradiction to the stereotype of the ‘Jewish American Princess’. They (and I’m speculating here) may have seen themselves as fulfilling the promise of liberation, emancipating themselves from what feminist Betty Friedan in 1963 called the ‘comfortable concentration camp’ of the household as they set out into the Promised Land of the porno sets of Southern California. It signified their economic and social freedom: they were free to choose to enter, rather than coerced into it by economic and other circumstances. Once they had lain down, they could stand on their own two feet, particularly as female performers typically earn twice as much as their male counterparts.

Sexual revolutionaries

Extending the subversive thesis, Jewish involvement in the X-rated industry can be seen as a proverbial two fingers to the entire WASP establishment in America. Some porn stars viewed themselves as frontline fighters in the spiritual battle between Christian America and secular humanism. According to Ford, Jewish X-rated actors often brag about their ‘joy in being anarchic, sexual gadflies to the puritanical beast’. Jewish involvement in porn, by this argument, is the result of an atavistic hatred of Christian authority: they are trying to weaken the dominant culture in America by moral subversion. Astyr remembers having ‘to run or fight for it in grammar school because I was a Jew. It could very well be that part of my porn career is an “up yours” to these people’. Al Goldstein, the publisher of Screw, said (on lukeford.net), ‘The only reason that Jews are in pornography is that we think that Christ sucks. Catholicism sucks. We don’t believe in authoritarianism.’ Pornography thus becomes a way of defiling Christian culture and, as it penetrates to the very heart of the American mainstream (and is no doubt consumed by those very same WASPs), its subversive character becomes more charged. Porn is no longer of the ‘what the Butler saw’ voyeuristic type; instead, it is driven to new extremes of portrayal that stretch the boundaries of the porn aesthetic. As new sexual positions are portrayed, the desire to shock (as well as entertain) seems clear.

It is a case of the traditional revolutionary/radical drive of immigrant Jews in America being channelled into sexual rather than leftist politics. Just as Jews have been disproportionately represented in radical movements over the years, so they are also disproportionately represented in the porn industry. Jews in America have been sexual revolutionaries. A large amount of the material on sexual liberation was written by Jews. Those at the forefront of the movement which forced America to adopt a more liberal view of sex were Jewish. Jews were also at the vanguard of the sexual revolution of the 1960s. Wilhelm Reich, Herbert Marcuse and Paul Goodman replaced Marx, Trotsky and Lenin as required revolutionary reading. Reich’s central preoccupations were work, love and sex, while Marcuse prophesied that a socialist utopia would free individuals to achieve sexual satisfaction. Goodman wrote of the ‘beautiful cultural consequences’ that would follow from legalizing pornography: it would ‘ennoble all our art’ and ‘humanize sexuality’. Pacheco was one Jewish porn star who read Reich’s intellectual marriage of Freud and Marx (lukeford.net):

“Before I got my first part in an adult film, I went down to an audition for an X-rated film with my hair down to my ass, a copy of Wilhelm Reich’s Sexual Revolution under my arm and yelling about work, ‘love and sex’.”

As Rabbi Samuel H. Dresner put it (E. Michael Jones, ‘Rabbi Dresner’s Dilemma: Torah v. Ethnos’ Culture Wars, May 2003), ‘Jewish rebellion has broken out on several levels’, one being ‘the prominent role of Jews as advocates to sexual experimentation’. Overall, then, porn performers are a group of people who praise rebellion, self-fulfilment and promiscuity.

What are we ashamed of?

This brief overview and analysis of the role and motivations behind pornographers and performers is intended to shed light on a neglected topic in American Jewish popular culture. Little has been written about it. Books such as Howard M. Sachar’s A History of the Jews in America (New York: Knopf, 1992) simply ignore the topic. And you can bet that the 350th anniversary of the arrival of the Jews in the United States did not include any celebrations of Jewish innovation in this field. Even the usually tolerant Time Out New York has been too prim to deal with it, although the more iconoclastic Heeb plans an issue on it. In light of the relatively tolerant Jewish view of sex, why are we ashamed of the Jewish role in the porn industry? We might not like it, but the Jewish role in this field has been significant and it is about time it was written about seriously.

Nathan Abrams is a Lecturer in Modern American History at the University of Aberdeen. He has just completed a book on neo-conservatism in the United States.

About Luke Ford

I've written five books (see Amazon.com). My work has been noted in the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, and 60 Minutes. I teach Alexander Technique in Beverly Hills (Alexander90210.com).
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