Monday, May 18, 2009

Pornography and Peace

So many people don't truly love themselves. Women can be especially hard on themselves--comparing themselves with the air-brushed images of size-2 women that confront them in check-out lines, billboards, and malls. These images bombard them on television, at movies, and in store fronts. And somehow these fake images convince some women that they aren't thin enough, beautiful enough, or glamourous enough, when in reality no one looks as perfect as these advertisements and magazine covers pretend.

Hugh Hefner made soft-core pornography acceptable to the main-stream public, and woman have become dehumanized and demoralized in the process. If you doubt the influence of soft- and hard-core porn on women and girls, read the book "Pornified," written by a journalist who wanted to objectively determined the effect--either good or bad--that porn was having in America. (Her findings would be true for other countries as well.) Her observations are alarming, for she discovered (among other things) that the porn industry would convince women that they are nothing more than a sexual commodity and would have men treat them as such.

I have spend hundreds of hours researching the effects of porn on self-esteem, and I also speak widely about porn addiction and recovery. Each month porn becomes more prolific in our culture as sexting, cell phone porn, media and entertainment porn become more widely available and acceptable. Millions of people are addicted to porn in the United States and many more millions are addicted world-wide. And millions of women are feeling worthless and less than whole because of the messages and images that bombard them each day.

Tomorrow study the magazines you see at the check-out stand or the headlines you read in major magazines. Notice what they say about the value of womanhood. Notice how the voices and images in our cultures are dehumanizing women.

Pornography can destroy the peace in families, hearts, and homes. We can start today to speak up politely in behalf of virtue and decency. And, we can refuse to allow air-brushed images determine our self-worth.
© Carol Brown

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