BY ROB SALERNO – The Miami New Times, in a story bizarrely dated Thursday, Aug 25 (but posted Aug 23), recounts how gay pornstar Collin O’Neal lost his job as a substitute elementary school teacher when colleagues revealed his moonlighting to one of the principals he worked for.
O’Neal, real name Shawn Loftis, says in the story that he decided to give up porn in 2010, sold his successful World of Men franchise to a Canadian company and began substitute teaching in April 2010. He hadn’t been teaching for long before a principal at Nautilus Middle School, Allyn Bernstein, suspended him in January because he had “his own personal gay website.”
The Florida Department of Education sided with Bernstein and revoked Loftis’s teaching licence in April, citing a rule that faculty must “conduct themselves, both in their employment and in the community, in a
manner that will reflect credit upon themselves and the school system.” Loftis turned to the American Civil Liberties Union to help him appeal the decision, but they turned him down, saying his case would be stronger if he wasn’t working with children.
Loftis complains that his porn career was perfectly legal and shouldn’t prevent him from teaching. He says that he was retired from the business, which is news to me, and probably also to his 3,400 Twitter followers. After all, he was promoting the new World of Men website as late as Dec 26, 2010.
He’s since returned to making videos, which is a relief to fans of buff, hirsute daddies and exotic locales everywhere.
Even if Loftis wasn’t continuing to make porn, it’s hard to argue that that part of his career was in his past. He’s the title actor and personality behind a successful internet video franchise. Especially because he retired at the top of his game, his videos would live on long past his retirement date. Before you can ask if a porn past prevents one from having a career, it’s probably worth asking if porn actually stays in the past. Do you ever stop being a pornstar? If so, how long does that take? Does a movie star or rock star ever stop being a movie/rock star?
So I guess we should ask if a porn actor who keeps his side business separate from his professional life should be barred from working in schools? I’ll let you hash that out in the comments.
Or we can ask how we can sign up for eighth-grade math tutoring in Miami and if there’s any punishment for returning homework late.
One place that doesn’t seem to discriminate against pornstars is CNN, where Loftis has been filing reports as a citizen journalist for quite a while. Loftis says CNN knows about his extracurricular activities and they’re happy to have him on board.