What do Kanye West, Billie Eilish, Chris Rock, Russell Brand, Rashida Jones, Terry Crews, Naval Ravikant, Pamela Anderson, Kirk Franklin, Jordan Peterson, Jada Pinkett Smith, Mike Tyson, Andrew Huberman, Shelley Lubben, Joe Rogan, Gary Wilson, and Trip Lee have in common? They’ve all spoken out about the ills of pornography, and the pornography industry, in general, and/or the personal damage they experienced as a result of a private porn addiction or habit. It takes courage to address an issue in the culture as prevalent, taboo, and touchy as pornography, and I applaud them for doing so.
Today, I’ve transcribed a compilation of the aforementioned celebrities addressing the aforementioned issues. Eye-opening and motivational, on one hand, but also sad and moving to hear people share their stories. The culture seems to be slowly wising up, but a lot of people have gotten hurt in the process.
Check out the complete transcript and video below!
I think we’re just on the dawn of a massive change in the world—the way that the world looks at this. The way that it’s no longer going to be accepted. And, like I said, the men [and women] that are committed to taking action, to taking change, are going to be the ones that separate themselves from the pack.Frank Rich (Quitting Pornography)
Celebrities Speak Against Pornography:
Kanye West: Playboy was my gateway into full-on pornography addiction. My dad had a Playboy left out at age five, and it’s affected almost every choice I made for the rest of my life, from age five to now having to kick the habit. And it just presents itself in the open, like it’s okay. And I stand up and say, “You know, it’s not okay.”
Billie Eilish: I’m so angry that porn is so loved, and I’m so angry at myself for thinking that it was okay. As a woman, I think porn is a disgrace. I used to be like the person that would like talk about porn all the time. I’d be like, “Oh, it’s so stupid that anybody would think that porn is bad or [cuts out] up. I think it’s so cool. It’s great.” I think it really destroyed my brain, and I feel incredibly devastated that I was exposed to so much porn.
Chris Rock: One of the things about that I’ve done in the last whatever year, not just going to therapy, I’ve kind of gotten off social media. I got off all social media. I don’t watch pornography anymore. I’m like, my brain is like “Ahh.” Like, I’m focused, man. Now, so, a lot of stuff on YouTube or, what is it, Instagram, I got like a company that puts that stuff out.
Russell Brand: We’re living in this culture now where there’s just icebergs off filth floating through every house on Wi-Fi. It’s inconceivable what it must be like to be a young adolescent now with this kind of access to porn. I know that pornography is wrong, that I shouldn’t be looking at it. There’s a general feeling, isn’t there, in your core, if you look at pornography, that this isn’t what’s the best thing for me to do.
Rashida Jones: I wrote this article for Glamour magazine where I was highly critical of how, like, how naked everybody is publicly right now, from pop stars, to kind of reality stars, whatever. I’m more concerned the very young fans of these girls who just emulate them, and, you know, the reason that these girls feel like this is a viable option, as the thing to do when you turn 18 and you leave high school. It’s because, culturally, porn is mainstream now.
Terry Crews: You know, for years, years, years, my dirty little secret was that I was addicted to pornography, for years. It’s kind of crazy because this thing has become a problem. I think it’s a worldwide problem, but pornography, it really, really, messed up my life in a lot of ways. Some people deny it. They say, “Hey man, you can’t really be addicted to pornography. There’s no way.” But I’m going to tell you something, if day turns into night, and you are still watching, you probably got a problem. And that was me. It affected everything. I didn’t tell my wife. Didn’t tell my friends, nobody knew. But the internet allowed that secret to stay and grow.
My wife was literally like, “I don’t know you anymore. I’m outta here.” That changed me. I had to change because I realized, “Yo, this thing is a major, major problem.” I literally had to go to rehab for it.” And the thing what I found was that by not telling people, it becomes more powerful, but when you tell, and when you put it out there in the open, just like I’m doing right now, to the whole world, it loses its power. And everybody wants you to keep this little secret. I’m telling, and I’m putting it out there. I’ve been free of this thing going on six, seven years now. Thank goodness. But now, it’s become my battle to help other people who are going through the same thing.
Naval Ravikant: Social media, they’ve massaged all the mechanisms to addict like a Skinner’s pigeon [WWII experiment] or a rat, who’s just going to click, click, click, click. Can’t put the phone down. Food. They’ve taken sugar, and they weaponized it. They put it into all these different forms and varieties that you can’t resist eating. Drugs. They’ve taken pharmaceuticals and plants, and they’ve synthesized them. They’ve grown them in such a way that you get addicted. You can’t put them down. Porn. If you’re a young male and you wander on the internet, it’ll like sap away your libido, and your not going out in real life society anymore, because you got this incredibly stimulating stuff coming at.
Pamela Anderson: I’m concerned about porn addiction. I think it’s affecting relationships. You know, when you have a woman lying in bed in lingerie, and you’re in the bathroom looking at a computer, something’s wrong, you know? There’s so much access, and I’m worried about that for young people. People need more and more to get aroused, and I think it’s leading to violence against women, rape, child abuse. I really think it has something to do with that. And I think we really have to start thinking about what we’re doing as people, how we’re imprinting ourselves. What we’re watching, what we’re doing, what we’re eating, what we’re wearing. It all builds our character. And it’s really important to just have the conversation.
Kirk Franklin: There’s an anger that rises up in me. And I got evangelically ticked off about the fact that I wish somebody would have taught me a long time ago the repercussions of sex and flesh and lust and vanity and pride and ego. I wish somebody would have been holding my little behind accountable years ago. If I have been set free from this one, anybody can, because for years, I even questioned, “Could I get free from this?”
Jordan Peterson: The typical porn actress, not the amateurs, but the professionals, have their sexually provocative physical elements exaggerated. And so, men are very visual, in terms of their sexual processing, and so, you know, the guys are pulled into it, and they’re pulled into it also by curiosity, but I think that ethically, it’s not good. It’s not good.
Jada Pinkett Smith: Back in the day, porn for my generation started in magazines, and then you had to like go to a CD store to get a VHS store. We didn’t have access to it like that. You had to like really go on an adventure to go see some pornography, whereas for your generation, it’s on your phone. It’s porn in your pocket.
Mike Tyson: I don’t have a phone, ‘cause my phone is my lower self. I might look at porn, so I’m conscious of my lower self, so I know I don’t need a phone. I want to conquer the world, and I know I can’t conquer the world unless I conquer myself. I don’t live my life right all the time, but when I have something, when I desire something, I have to clean my life up. God won’t bless me if I’m dirty. If I’m cheating on my wife. If I’m doing something disrespectful to my family. He won’t bless me.
Andrew Huberman: If people are pursuing pornography, and they’re not pursuing relationships, there is the potential that they reach their twenties and thirties, and they are truly dysfunctional.
Shelley Lubben: Porn has become so violent, it’s just about hate. It’s just hate and violence.
Joe Rogan: Here’s a big one. Why are these girls doing this? Okay, here’s something that people don’t like to admit that enjoy porn. The vast majority of them have been molested. The vast majority. Some study they did on girls who get into porn, who’ve been sexually abused, mentally abused, and physically abused–it was overwhelming. It was overwhelming.
Gary Wilson: The truth is real life isn’t like those simplistic fantasies that you see in a pornography clip. . . You really have to replace porn with other activity. You have to just get away from the computer and do other things. I personally don’t want to need a screen to be aroused. I’d rather connect with my wife and get my arousal that way.
Trip Lee: It’s coming to a point where if I talk to a young man about his life, whether somebody my age, or somebody younger, or maybe a little bit older. I’m not at all surprised to hear that there’s some kind of struggle with porn. And I would be shocked if I met a young man who hasn’t had a struggle with it at some point, because it’s just so easily accessible, and it’s so damaging to our souls. . . It’s a unique sin, even unique to other sexual sins, because you don’t at this point have to go anywhere to indulge in it. You don’t have to make a long series of bad decisions to fall into it. It can just be very easy in your pocket at any moment.