"Mistrust those in whom the urge to punish is strong." Friedrich Nietzche

"Any and all non-violent, non-coercive, non-larcenous, consensual adult behavior that does not physically harm other people or their property or directly and immediately endangers same, that does not disturb the peace or create a public nuisance, and that is done in private, especially on private property, is the inalienable right of all adults. In a truly free and liberty-loving society, ruled by a secular government, no laws should be passed to prohibit such behavior. Any laws now existing that are contrary to the above definition of inalienable rights are violations of the rights of adults and should be made null and void." D. M. Mitchell (from The Myth of Inalienable Rights, at: http://dowehaverights.blogspot.com/)

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Santorum's Political Posturing on Pornography

Republican presidential candidate, Rick Santorum, has gotten on his "high horse" to rail against the plethora of pornography in the U.S. He blames the Obama administration for not aggressively prosecuting the existing laws on pornography and says, if elected, he will wage a war on porn.


Why do these conservative Christian types hate and fear sex so much?

I know, I know. They will say that they don't hate or fear it, but that sex is sacred and should only be consummated between a married man and woman ... married to each other, that is.


Well first of all, I don't think sex is anymore sacred than any other natural bodily function. There are only two reasons to have sex at all: producing offspring and pleasure. That is, if you are doing it correctly you should experience pleasure. And if it never felt good, then we wouldn't have seven billion people on this planet, would we?

Second, why do so many of these Republican politicians get caught with their little man in the doo dah of a woman who is not his wife. Go to this Wikipedia site and scroll down to, for instance, Mark Souder, Tom Ganley, Chip Pickering, Vito Fossella, Randall L. Tobias, and David Vitter, among others. These men were all federal Congressmen, Senators, or appointees. They are no longer in their elected or appointed positions because they were caught having extra-marital affairs. So much for core conservative values.

And it's not just the Republicans. If you go to the same Wikipedia site you will find Democrats who are misbehaving too ... that is, according to their political stances on family values and protecting the children. I mean, what politician, Democrat or Republican, would tell the truth and say that he, or she, likes sex, likes it a lot, and likes it with more than one partner?

Okay, so back to Santorum. He claims that pornography harms children. Where are the studies showing this? He says that porn makes men into misogynists. Where are the studies? Upon what scientifically proven facts is he basing these statements?

Do you remember Masters and Johnson? They wrote a book back in the 80's: Masters and Johnson on Sex and Human Loving (Little, Brown, 1982). They equate "sexually explicit materials" with "erotica." Here are a few brief excerpts from that book.
  • Throughout the centuries, books about sex have been widely and eagerly read. (pg. 299)
  • Erotica provides a source of knowledge and comparative information about sexual behavior. (pg. 299)
  • [B]oth sexes respond to erotica in similar ways. To be certain, some females--having been taught that it is not "ladylike" to allow oneself to be intrigued or excited by such materials--avidly avoid any exposure to erotica or do their best to block their own spontaneous responses by an act of will. (pg. 300)
Masters and Johnson mentions the Commission on Obscenity and Pornography of 1968 which noted that "[i]n general, established patterns of sexual behavior were found to be very stable and not altered substantially by exposure to erotica." (pg. 301)

Further, after Denmark legalized hard-core pornography in 1965, "the rates of many sex crimes decreased substantially, . . ." (pg. 301) And in America studies have shown that the people women and parents fear the most, rapists and child molesters,  "had less exposure to sexually explicit materials during adolescence than other adults." (pg. 301)

There were studies about violent pornography, which would include the "slasher" type films where one or more young women are depicted in sexually provocative and violent situations. It seems that the violence against the women in those movies, "rather than the sexual content," is what "produces the negative effects" of male "aggression against women . . . ." (pg. 302)

Wendy McElroy, in her book, XXX: A Woman's Right to Pornography (St. Martin's Press, 1995), makes several points about the benefits of pornography for women. McElroy researched her book by going to and interviewing the actors and producers of hard-core porn movies.

McElroy believes that pornography is a source of information for women by showing them "sexual possibilities," by letting them vicariously "experience sexual alternatives," and by giving them "information that cannot be found in textbooks or discussions." (pg. 129) And this can be done in the safe environment of their own homes. "Pornography is safe sex. No diseases. No violence. No pregnancy. No infidelity. No one to apologize to the next morning. Pornography is one of the most benevolent ways a woman can experience who she is sexually." (pg. 132)

She understands that pornography is not for every woman, but that it is a form of "free speech applied to the sexual realm" (pg. 129). Women who wish to watch pornographic movies should be free to do so.
Also, in her interviews of the actresses of the porn industry, she found none that were forced to do what they were doing.

Many women are physically abused by their boyfriends or husbands, but more times than not, male insecurity coupled with alcohol is the root of that problem, not pornography.

And finally, there is the issue of obscenity. The Supreme Court, in Miller vs. California, said that obscenity was not protected by the First Amendment's free speech clause and made up the "Miller Test" to decide if something was obscene or not. But one person's obscenity is another person's delight.

Dictionary.com defines obscene as follows: 1) offensive to morality or decency; indecent; depraved: obscene language. 2) Causing uncontrolled sexual desire. 3) Abominable; disgusting; repulsive.

I think that murder, rape, child molesting, and unnecessary warfare are all offensive to morality, decency, indecent, and depraved. I have never watched any porn--and I have watched a lot of it--that caused any uncontrolled sexual desire within me. As to that which I believe to be abominable, disgusting, and repulsive, I refer you to the first sentence in this paragraph.

The pornography issue is like the drugs issue. It's not going away and if you try to prohibit it and suppress it then it will just pop up some place else in some other way. It will cause the business to go underground and then it will become a dangerous and violent business with real rapes and forced sexual acts. Or, it will be provided from outside the United States from people in countries who will shake their heads and wonder at the foolishness of the American people, just as they did during our prohibition of alcohol.