Last month adult star Hugh Hunter caused an uproar, withdrawing his GayVN nomination in protest of the “Best Ethnic Scene” which has since been removed. Sean Zevran and a few models also withdrew their nomination as well.
Now Sean Zevran is questioning Hugh Hunter’s motive in an open letter posted on his blog..
Now, I was only shortly behind Hugh Hunter in withdrawing my own nominations, but I suspect his and my reasons for doing so are slightly different, and I want to be forthcoming and clear on exactly why I withdrew my nominations. My fans, and those with whom I was nominated for this particular award, deserve an explanation.
Foremost, I withdrew my nominations because I wanted to show my fans, especially those of color, and the rest of the industry, that I am serious about wanting to see real change; that I want to not just talk about it, but be about it. Never in my entire porn career have I received so many texts, emails, and social media messages from fans, blogs, and publications alike asking what my response would be to the latest gay porn controversy. So, I thought maybe this would be an opportunity to add momentum to the conversation. Maybe this would be an opportunity to create a narrative that is driven mainly by the experiences and stories of people of color in the gay porn industry.
Secondly, I withdrew my nominations because I was angry, not at GayVN, but at the way the situation seemed to be unfolding. After receiving news of Hugh Hunter’s bombshell and reading the letter he sent to GayVN, I was angry that some random white guy had seemingly decided to take it upon himself to use the struggle of gay porn actors of color to get attention. Hugh Hunter is being praised right now by gay media and porn blogs as some kind of gay porn social justice icon while actors of color who have been talking about this for years continue to be ignored and forgotten, actors that came before my time, even.
For me, it’s more than a little unnerving that Hugh Hunter, again, a white guy, seems to be getting most of the attention for something that should be about us and how we feel. That in itself is telling. It also makes me suspicious of his motivations. I mean no disrespect to Hunter with what I’m about to say, but the things for which he was nominated put him up against some stiff competition, and had I been placing bets before he withdrew, I wouldn’t have placed bets on him to win anything at all. Mind you, this is less of a criticism of his talent in the industry and more of a compliment to those he was up against. He was up against some serious industry veterans, and Hunter wasn’t even nominated for “Best Ethnic Scene.” After all, he couldn’t have been. He’s white.
Forgive me for being skeptical of his motives. For a white guy who had next to no chance of winning, it seems something other than fortuitous that he would decline all of his nominations and try to blow the whole thing up on his way out by crying “Racism!” As a friend of mine often says, “Stay in your lane, boo. This ain’t about you.”
you can read the letter in it’s entirety here.
Hugh Hunter was not amused and responded..