Is Watching Bestiality Illegal?
A Strange Topic, But One Important To The Law.
Okay, I'll admit this one is out there. I was sent a question with a really open-ended answer. Is it illegal in California to watch bestiality porn? I'm still not sure why I got sent the question, but it seemed important enough to the person to ask for some legal advice. So since this is a subject that is not normally written about, I figured I would give it a shot. I did some research on the topic and found some interesting aspects to both CA state law and federal law regarding the topic.
In fact, such pornography is not uncommon. Among many of the strange and deviant types of porn out there, this is one that brings up a lot of legal questions. This includes the role of the state and federal government in regulating the practice-- and punishing those who break the law. And since this is both a sex crime and animal abuse question, I figured I would give it a stab. The short version is-- probably not.
But it requires more of an explanation, which I will provide below. Because of the rarity of such issues, this is a topic that is not Googled that often-- at least not in many people's browser histories. As a result, for many Americans, there is a question about this topic. Especially if you did not intend to watch such bestiality porn in the first place and accidentally clicked on the wrong link.
That is what our legal analysis is here for-- to figure out exactly what your legal rights and responsibilities are. Especially during this very strange time on the internet. Keep reading for more info. Normally this section talks about the author's expertise in the field. Fortunately, this is not a topic I've heard of much in my decades in the legal field. However, the laws on the books are old and strict-- which means they deserve a closer look for our readers.
Michael Ehline is the lead attorney of the Ehline Law Firm Personal Injury Attorneys APLC. He and his team are experts in a number of legal fields, including that of car accident injuries and civil rights. It's this second specialization that often gets me any number of questions. Often they revolve around discrimination in the workforce or at the hands of a government agency.
And sometimes they are about how the law applies to a person individually. No matter. This is why lawyers are here to help interpret the law and the court system. It's also why I write these legal columns-- in order to better understand some of these topics myself, and break them down for my readers. In case you have any questions, I am available to chat. I can be reached at (213) 596-9642 or at firstname.lastname@example.org. I also run a legal blog with some of th ekey legal and news issues of the day here.
An Increased Focus On Sexual Deviance.
I think that part of the reason I got this question is due to an increased look at sexual deviance, including in California. And I don't mean just due to social pressures or actions, either. As I will write about elsewhere in my blog, the California state legislature is going nuts. They are considering changes to sex crime statutes, reducing the penalty for certain sex crimes involving minors.
I think that in this legal scenario, there is a clear, slippery slope that affects both kids and their parents. Not to mention our social morals and society as a whole. But I guess I'll save more of that info for my next articles. Back to the topic at hand. Let's look at CA state law regarding abuse of animals, including bestiality. This law is quite clear. Actually, acting out bestiality is quite illegal.
“Sexual contact” means any act, committed for the purpose of sexual arousal or gratification, abuse, or financial gain, between a person and an animal involving contact between the sex organs or anus of one and the mouth, sex organs, or anus of the other, or, without a bona fide veterinary or animal husbandry purpose, the insertion, however slight, of any part of the body of a person or any object into the vaginal or anal opening of an animal, or the insertion of any part of the body of an animal into the vaginal or anal opening of a person.
But the federal law has a bit of a loophole in it. It is illegal for you to actually carry out such a pornographic, and potentially disease attracting act. However, if a person watched porn, including bestiality, it is not illegal, provided that all of the people involved are adults. So as far as the porn business goes, it's a no go onshore.
B)For purposes of subsection 8(B)  of this section, “sexually explicit conduct” means— (i)graphic sexual intercourse, including genital-genital, oral-genital, anal-genital, or oral-anal, whether between persons of the same or opposite sex, or lascivious simulated sexual intercourse where the genitals, breast, or pubic area of any person is exhibited; (ii)graphic or lascivious simulated; (I)bestiality; (II)masturbation; or (III)sadistic or masochistic abuse; or (iii)graphic or simulated lascivious exhibition of the anus, genitals, or pubic area of any person;
So there you have it. I hope that this article answers the question. It might also be time to review these questions a little bit more. But for a person who accidentally follows a link on their phone or computer, leading them to this deviant side of sexuality, they will not be charged with a felony. State and federal law appear to line up unless a person takes part in such activity personally. Then it is the topic of another question and another answer.
- California Legislative Information: PENAL CODE - PENPART 1. OF CRIMES AND PUNISHMENTS [25 - 680.4] ( Part 1 enacted 1872. ) TITLE 9. OF CRIMES AGAINST THE PERSON INVOLVING SEXUAL ASSAULT, AND CRIMES AGAINST PUBLIC DECENCY AND GOOD MORALS [261 - 368.7] ( Heading of Title 9 amended by Stats. 1982, Ch. 1111, Sec. 2. )
- Cornell Law School: Legal Information Institute: 18 U.S. Code § 2256.Definitions for chapter
- Ehline Law Firm: Concern about rape dogs being used on children