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Joseph C. Sciambra (1969–) is a Catholic blogger and author. He was formerly a gay pornographic actor, escort and neo-nazi. Sciambra admits to having "voices inside his head", claimed he was "possessed by the devil" and that he saw Satan through a glory hole with a "foot long fork tongue". He gained notoriety after saying that anal sex "releases demonic entities". Sciambra claims he has abstained from homosexual activity since 1999, but has never claimed to be "ex-gay". He is used by the religious right as an example of the so-called "homosexual lifestyle", despite his experiences as a porn star looking nothing like that of the average gay person.
Sciambra claims that he grew up in a "happy and healthy home" and attended Catholic school, which contradicts the anti-gay argument that homosexuality is caused by a negative family environment. However he also says he did not fit in at school, probably due to his feminine nature. Sciambra states that he began reading pornography magazines as a teenager, which he blames as the "cause" of his homosexuality, as well as being "possessed" by the devil. Sciambra moved to San Francisco in the 1980s, where he began a career in gay porn and escorting.
In a 2013 interview with LifeSiteNews, Sciambra claimed his homosexuality was the result of being "possessed by the devil". He claimed to have seen Satan through a glory hole who had "presented himself in the form of a gaping mouth with a foot-long forked tongue". After this experience he claims he began hearing voices inside his head. Sciambra claimed he had a near-death experience while filming a "violent" porn scene, which lead him to rediscover his Catholic faith and leave his "homosexual lifestyle". Sciambra admitted he still "struggles" with attraction to other men and the "temptation" to masturbate.
Sciambra was a guest on The Howard Stern Show. In the interview he revealed that he featured in extreme porn scenes that included urination and defecating on film, and that he had a period as a "neo-nazi". Howard Stern said that Sciambra has gone from "one extreme to another", and argued that his problem is addiction and extremism, rather than his homosexuality. Stern and the panelist spoke about how their gay friends have very different lives from Sciambra, and that many have healthy relationships. Sciambra dismissed this and argued that he has no interest in finding a partner, male or female, and said "Jesus is my lover. He gives me everything I need." Stern told Sciambra that he sounded like a bitter "woman who had been hurt too many times". Sciambra claimed to have been celibate since 1999, and that he doesn't masturbate and only ejaculates unconsciously in his sleep.
In 2017, Sciambra published a blog post, titled "Surviving gay… barely". He further details his life in San Francisco in the 1980s and 1990s, when he states he formed an addiction to sex, and described his experience in gay bathhouses, using religious iconography and language. Sciambra states he required two surgeries on his behind, though does not describe how this damage actually occurred. Given the fact that millions of men and women regularly partake in anal sex without any need for surgery, this injury seems more likely the result of his career in extreme films.
Sciambra received media attention after uploading a YouTube video claiming that "anal sex releases into the world rare demonic entities" and that that devil himself could be "conceived" and given birth to through the backside. He has since removed the video.
Many of Sciambra's statements about the "homosexual lifestyle" seem more like a projection of his own behavior and feelings onto others. Instead of just adopting a slower pace of life, Sciambra rejects his homosexuality altogether.
Sciambra has written books about his "homosexual lifestyle" and his Catholic faith. He also runs a shop selling religious goods such as rosary beads, religious cards and statues.
Interesting, not one of Sciambra's claims are verifiable. He doesn't refer to any other individuals or provide any documents to support any aspect of his story. Sciambra could easily provide the titles of the porn-films he claims to have starred in, or a copy of a document confirming his supposed surgeries. These would at least corroborate part of what he has claimed.
A rational response to Sciambra on the cause of his homosexuality
Most research indicates that a large portion of gay men were gender non conforming as children, and this feminine behavior is largely determined by biology. Sciambra's voice and nature are both stereotypically feminine. Pew Research show that most gay men typically first thought they were gay at 10 years old, and typically 'knew for sure' by age 15. Both of these points are important because Sciambra claims that looking at pornography during his teenage years 'caused' his homosexuality, yet, no heterosexual man looks at and is aroused by gay porn without having an existing attraction to it.
There is a also huge flaw in the 'nurture' argument; the claim that social environment causes homosexuality. In their 2016 article, psychologist J. Michael Bailey and his colleagues describe a key source of evidence pointing to the role of biology—that is, nature—over nurture. Between 1960 and 2000, doctors believed that babies who were biologically male but had malformed penises, or whose penises were lost in surgical accidents, would be better off being surgically altered and socially reassigned female. This belief has changed, as has medical practice. But in the meantime, a generation of individuals born biologically male were raised as girls, creating a kind of “natural experiment.” Scientists were curious—what had their sexual orientation turned out to be. As Dr. Bailey and his fellow researchers explain, in the cases in which the sexual identity of these individuals is known, it has been found to be attraction was toward women. What does this tell us? Since the men are heterosexual, Dr. Bailey and his colleagues explain that this is the result that would be expected if nature, not nurture, accounts for the development of sexual orientation.
- Joseph Sciambra, Swallowed By Satan: How Our Lord Jesus Christ Saved Me From Pornography, Homosexuality, and the Occult, Pilot Communications Group, 2013. ISBN 193926815X
- Joseph Sciambra, Disordered: A Critical Examination of Gay Life and Culture From One Who Survived, SOS Publishing, 2019. ASIN B07MYGNQV4
Notable media coverage
- 'Devil Born Anally' Says Ex Gay Porn Actor. The Young Turks, YouTube, 4 January 2013
- Howard Stern Show - Joe Sciambra, Junk Drawer, YouTube, 26 March 2013
- Author: Joseph Sciambra by OnePeterFive
- Gay porn actor left it all for Jesus after 'possession,' terrifying near-death experience by Peter Baklinski (October 2013) lifesitenews.com (archived)
- Howard Stern Show - Joe Sciambra on the Howard Stern Show (2013) YouTube.com
- 'JESUS IS MY LOVER' by The Howard Stern Shown (2013) howardstern.com
- Surviving gay… barley by Joseph Sciambra (2017) josephsciambra.com (archived)
- Christian former gay porn star says gay sex releases demonic entities by GayStarNews (January 2013) gaystarnews.com
- LGBT Americans in changing times: Tell us your story
- Sexual Orientation, Controversy, and Science (2016) Bailey et al.
- A near perfect quasi experiment identiversity.org (2017)