As a Tea Party activist, I am accustomed to the fact that our citizen-based groups are targeted.

However, given how much time federal employees spend watching adult films during work hours, I would think that protecting the porn business would be a priority.

So, imagine my surprise at discovering this legal enterprise  is now the target of the Department of Justice.

Despite being in good financial standing, adult film performers and others in the porn industry have had bank accounts abruptly terminated—and the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) may have had something to do with it.

Under “Operation Choke Point,” the DOJ and its allies are going after legal but subjectively undesirable business ventures by pressuring banks to terminate their bank accounts or refuse their business. The very premise is clearly chilling—the DOJ is coercing private businesses in an attempt to centrally engineer the American marketplace based on it’s own politically biased moral judgements. Targeted business categories so far have included payday lenders, ammunition sales, dating services, purveyors of drug paraphernalia, and online gambling sites.

“Operation Chokepoint is flooding payments companies that provide processing service to those industries with subpoenas, civil investigative demands, and other burdensome and costly legal demands,” wrote Jason Oxman, CEO of the Electronic Transactions Association, at The Hill.

At College Insurrection, we chronicle the disturbing “pornification” of our campuses. But while I despise the business model, it is still a legal business and its participants are not breaking any law. Then how is it that special rules have been put in place that deny an American in good standing the ability to do basic banking?

This past Monday, porn star Teagan Presley arrived home in Las Vegas from yet another whirlwind strip club appearance tour and found a letter from her bank.

Chase was closing her account, which was listed under her legal name, as well as the account of her husband.

When Presley went to the bank in person to ask why, she was told it’s because she’s considered “high risk.”

The Department of Justice is only one agency that cops an attitude of moral righteousness when stripping citizens of their assets. George Will recently recounted the use of “civil forfeiture” rules by the IRS to strip the accounts of Terry Dehko and his daughter Sandy Thomas, which were related to the running of their Michigan store:

Sandy, a mother of four, has a master’s degree in urban planning but has worked in the store off and on since she was 12. She remembers, “They just walked into the store” and announced that they had emptied the store’s bank account. The IRS agents believed, or pretended to believe, that Terry and Sandy were or conceivably could be — which is sufficient for the IRS — conducting a criminal enterprise when not selling groceries.

Porn stars stripped of banking rights and shop keepers stripped of their money. Before the behemoth of our federal bureaucracy, American citizens stand very naked, indeed.

[Featured image: (Warning NSFW) Layton Benton/Twitter]