Pastor Says Watching Pornography is ‘the New Bubonic Plague’

Pornography is the new bubonic plague.

So says Jay Dennis, pastor of the Church of the Mall in Lakeland, Florida. We’ll have to assume that Dennis is engaging in a little over-the-top hyperbole, because bubonic plague has a mortality rate of up to 75%; if a proportional impact was seen among Americans who like to look at pictures of other people getting it on, no doubt we’d see more than a hundred million corpses rotting in our streets and homes.

Yes, porn is popular and plentiful, and these days it’s mostly free. This is a big problem for nannies, who simply cannot brook the thought of other people having fun, especially if there are various stages of undress involved.

Dennis is issuing a call for one million Christian men to live porn-free. They must promise God, their pastors, and their wives/girlfriends that they’ll go cold turkey. Why has Dennis turned into a smutfighter? When you visit his site, you learn that porn “leads to broken marriages, child abuse, and physical harm”; that it is a “cancer,” a “war,” and a “deadly lure”; as well as “an addiction as powerful as crack” that is spread by “Satan.”

Setting aside the lurid and ludicrous language, I can’t say I have a problem with the no-porn challenge. More power to those who want to break a habit that they don’t feel is right or healthy for them. Dennis’s targets must be in the majority, because there’s likely to be serious underreporting in the following findings about porn use among the religious (not all respondents will cop to pornography-fueled solo sailing when asked about it by a perfect stranger who is documenting their answers):

47% of Christians admitted pornography was a major problem in their home in a survey conducted by Internet Filter Review. Even more discouraging are the 53% of men belonging to the Christian group Promise Keepers who admit to visiting pornography sites every week.

A survey of evangelical Protestant clergy conducted by The Leadership Survey in 2001 found that 40% of those responding struggled with pornography. Another survey in 2002 conducted by Rick Warren of Saddleback Church found that in the previous month, 30% of pastors had viewed pornography.

For people steeped in faith, bodily pleasures other than sex between a husband and wife have been frequent sources of shame, confusion, embarrassment, and guilt.

Whatever. My motto has always been, to each his own. And that’s what I like about Dennis’s initiative. He doesn’t try to buzzkill other people’s chosen gratifications (except if you’re already part of his tribe).

This is good news. It’s part of a long and positive trend: Over the past few decades, the Christian Right has gradually moved away from censorship attempts of the adult industry. Those efforts never got any lasting traction, ultimately doing more harm than good to the movement’s goal; the fingerwaggers’ whole impotent crusade exposed them for the shrieking bluenoses and scolds they are.

Or were. The days of Supernanny Edwin Meese, Ronald Reagan’s Attorney General who tried his damndest to expand the definition of obscenity, and to abolish sexually explicit materials, are never coming back. That’s despite the occasional misguided anti-porn flareups (hi, Alberto Gonzales) that still plague certain quarters (hello, Mitt Romney).

One thing does worry me. I’m not sure what the reverend Dennis thinks of the arousing images that his followers stealthily form in their minds. After his no-porn pledgers give up pictures of nekkid people, should they also promise that they’ll never dream of a dalliance with that comely stranger at the airport, or fantasize about a tryst with the pretty girl at the checkout counter? The punishment for such thoughts is perfectly clear and perfectly hideous. I refer you to Matthew 5:27-30:

You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall not commit adultery.’ But I tell you that anyone who looks at a woman lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his heart. If your right eye causes you to stumble, gouge it out and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to be thrown into hell. And if your right hand causes you to stumble, cut it off and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to go into hell.

On the plus side, I’m envisioning an uptick in business for crematoriums, who may well start advertising the respectful disposal of body parts severed on Christ’s behalf: “No job too small.”

(Photo via Join 1 Million Men)

About Terry Firma

Terry Firma, though born and Journalism-school-educated in Europe, has lived in the U.S. for the past 20-odd years. Stateside, his feature articles have been published in the New York Times, Reason, Rolling Stone, Playboy, and Wired. Terry is the founder and Main Mischief Maker of Moral Compass, a site that pokes fun at the delusional claim by people of faith that a belief in God equips them with superior moral standards.

  • busterggi

    Porn is new? The man has no clue about human history.

    • C.L. Honeycutt

      Hell, even tentacle porn is ancient. :P

      • Michael

        But it only became common as a result of a pro-censorship drive to prevent the showing of penises in anime.

        • Spuddie

          And in live action film. Its a weird culture thing. Like how they take their shoes off inside a home.

          Mythical beings with ginormous testicles are still OK in film, but actual human genitals not so much. But given the increasing exports of Japanese porn, even that is changing.

      • http://itsmyworldcanthasnotyours.blogspot.com/ wmdkitty

        Ah, “The Fisherman’s Wife”….

        • C.L. Honeycutt

          Imagine how long it had to have been around for that art to have been considered acceptable. :P People can fetishize most anything with which they have regular or early contact, and there have been octopi around the islands of Japan for a long, long time.

          • Spuddie

            Not that long. Japanese culture didn’t have much of a puritanical streak until the modern era.

            Their original nature worshiping religion wasn’t wiped out by the more boring newcomer faith. They just blended together and made a happy truce.

  • C Peterson

    I find it interesting that those who crusade the most against pornography always seem to have a very… intimate… familiarity with all the various types which are out there. They must be expert… researchers.

    • EmpiricalPierce

      It reminds me how the most religious states in the US also tend to have the highest rates of divorce, teen pregnancy, homicide, etc. Religion has a knack for achieving the exact opposite of its stated intention.

      • moother

        That’s basically because people with an underpar education and a lack of critical thinking skills tend to make plenty bad choices in their lives.

        Religion poisons everything.

      • C.L. Honeycutt

        Those states also tend to view the most porn. Total coincidence I’m sure.

        • Darrell Ross

          It may be better to think of religion as the affect rather than the cause. So those states have underpar education, a lack of critical thinking skills, lots of divorse, teen pregnancy, ignorance, etc – all of these fit nicely with religion. Church leaders hungry for power don’t have to care too much about their parishioners.

          • http://gamesgirlsgods.blogspot.com/ Feminerd

            It’s a pretty nasty reinforcing feedback loop, actually. The religion encourages lack of sexual education and lack of critical thinking skills, which in turn leads to subpar education, lots of early marriage and divorce, teen pregnancy, ignorance, etc … which then leads to more religiosity as people try to cope with their lives.

            • http://itsmyworldcanthasnotyours.blogspot.com/ wmdkitty

              Even worse: it’s intentional.

              • http://gamesgirlsgods.blogspot.com/ Feminerd

                Sigh. Yeah. It’s not intentional on the part of the people who are most harmed, but rather their leaders both political and spiritual.

      • baal

        Conversely, liberal values are correlated with better demographics on all the items you list as well as economic indicators.

  • Joel

    ou mean to tell me, I’ve been wrong all these years???? I’ve always thought Religion was the Plague

  • Baby_Raptor

    I’m not fond of porn, but…Cancer? The plague? Child abuse? Fucking really?

    The Anti-Kitten Burning Crusade must be getting desperate for some new indignation.

  • Anon

    The only thing about porn hat worries me is illegal sex trafficking and the objectification of women. I don’t have the slightest care how people choose to pleasure themselves.

    • Noelle

      When discussing such an idea with the anti-porn religious folks, I’ve been surprised to learn that they don’t much see the difference between consensual adult porn and the non-consensual slave and child porn. They seem convinced that the first will inevitably lead to the second. Because those who look at pictures of naked people cannot possibly know or care about the difference.

      It could be a culture so wrapped up in sexual religious rules, rather than consent doesn’t realize it’s healthy to enjoy one and abhor the other.

      • Miss_Beara

        They have trouble with the concept of consensual in general. They refuse to see the difference in consensual adult porn like they refuse to see the difference between consensual same sex relationships. They equate the first with non consensual slave and child porn. They equate the second with pedophilia, incest and bestiality.

        It is funny how they think these so called evils of the world are modern and caused by our sinful nature as prophesized in the bible.

        • Michael

          Because the bible teaches them that the only form of consent is the one between married couples which is always freely given because they’re married and not allowed to say no.

      • Ryu

        A lot of it is within the wording here as well. “Men” do not look at porn. The idea that women would ever voluntarily enjoy sex is foreign to them. That’s why consent is an odd topic. Women cannot enjoy sex, so they don’t consent… it’s creepy.

        • Noelle

          The whole idea that only men enjoy sex is harmful on so many levels.

          At least, as you pointed out earlier, the ladies can watch all the pornos they want without needing to feel guilty about it.

  • viaten

    I wonder if an interest in guns and weapons and their use is just fine with him.

    • 3lemenope

      Not to mention iPods and other luxury goods.

      “Count the gigantic SUVs in the church parking lot” is always a fun game to play on Sunday.

  • Machintelligence

    a belief in God equips them with superior moral standards.

    Like this guy?

    http://youtu.be/Tr0UpQXYkGs

    • allein

      That was disturbing.

  • A3Kr0n

    They sure seem to have a big problem with porn over at the Christian camp, what’s up wit that?

    If they sign the abstinence pledge, I wonder if they get a purity ring to wear?

  • DougI

    How many thousands of years have people been looking at porn? Yeah, this kook is just another in a long line preaching for attention. Porn will still be viewed well after he’s dead, by both men and women.

    The funny thing is that porn tends to lead towards masturbation and masturbation has positive health benefits. So, if anything, wouldn’t his gods be telling people to look at porn if the result is positive?

  • Stev84

    Fundies also think that everyone who watches a porn movie every now and then is “addicted”. That’s how they came up with these statistics that “75% of all men have a porn addiction”.

    • IDP

      Some of them also feel that even something with mild sexuality or nudity is “porn”. Which I think also inflates the numbers.

      • Spazticus

        They equate any sexual education in schools (other than abstinence only) to teaching pornography. This is not a leap of logic for them, it’s a slippery slope.

    • allein

      I was thinking the same thing. From the quote above: “47% of Christians admitted pornography was a major problem in their home”…how many of them have habits no worse than the average American male, which don’t interfere in their life in any tangible way, but have such an unhealthy attitude toward it that it constitutes a “major problem”? I’m guessing most of them. The “problem” would likely disappear if they could just change the way they think about it.

    • http://itsmyworldcanthasnotyours.blogspot.com/ wmdkitty

      Heh. AA teaches the same about alcohol, that “one drink” makes you a drunk.

      • smrnda

        Worst is their concept of the “dry drunk.” If you stop drinking without the 12 steps and the Higher Power businesses, you’re a ‘dry drunk’ and are still considered an alcoholic.

        • http://itsmyworldcanthasnotyours.blogspot.com/ wmdkitty

          Weeeeeird.

          I have a pint every couple of months, keep it at just that — a pint — anything else imbibed is non-alcoholic (and likely to be ice water), and have yet to do anything drunk that I haven’t done sober or stoned, and yet, somehow… I’m “in denial”?

          I don’t fucking grok that, man. ‘Kay, I’m usually stoned out my gourd, but I’m thinking more clearly stoned than I ever do when my pain levels get near or over 5/10. (My good days, such as they are, are when my pain level is around a 3.)

  • cryofly

    Plague might be less painful than religion. And we know how to cure both.

  • http://stevebowen58.blogspot.co.uk/ Steve Bowen

    You only have a ” problem” with porn if you believe there’s a “problem with porn”.

    • islandbrewer

      I only have problems with porn when I haven’t updated my browser recently.

      • http://gamesgirlsgods.blogspot.com/ Feminerd

        Or with teenaged cousins who are fucking idiots and don’t go to legit places, infecting their computers with a million viruses. That’s a problem with porn too :/.

        • Noelle

          Who will educate our youth about the transmission of computer transmitted porn viruses?

          • allein

            Maybe that should be added to the sex-ed curriculum…

        • baal

          Someone did a study. Religious sites and places with games for kids have the most malware.

  • viaten

    What gets me about the Matthew 5:27-30 passage (one of the worst in the Bible) is that Jesus makes no mention of repentance and forgiveness as an option. Who in their right mind would do such a thing and how would it result in a change of heart?

  • randomfactor

    Little-known fact: One of the staunch allies of the Federal censors Way Back When was that paragon of virtue, Charles Keating, Jr.

    If a million men give up pr0n viewing, the rest of us will just have to, um, take up the slack. It’s a dirty job, but SOMEONE has to do it.

  • http://parkandbark.wordpress.com/ Houndentenor

    Because most morn is now viewed online, it’s possible to track where the most porn is consumed and guess what….the biggest consumers are in the bible belt and utah. That’s right. It’s the bible-thumpers who are spending the most time looking at porn. So in addition to wanking off at their computer, they’re also being big hypocrites about it. What else is knew, I guess.

    • midnight rambler

      If you’re citing the same study I remember, that was based on credit card info for people who paid for online subscriptions. So depending on your point of view, you could conclude that 1) they’re just greater suckers for paying for what you can largely get for free, or 2) they’re more upright and virtuous Christian fellows in feeling performers should be properly compensated.

      FWIW, having grown up in sinful Massachusetts, it was pretty shocking to drive through the South and see that nearly all of the billboards are for one of two things: churches or strip clubs*, neither of which you ever see ads for in New England.

      * also, along I95, about 1/3 of them are for South Of The Border.

    • Stev84

      Also that Pakistan tops the list of searches for gay porn. Not sure how reliable that is…

      • http://parkandbark.wordpress.com/ Houndentenor

        A lot of us in the West know where the gay porn is and don’t have to google search for it any more. That would skew the numbers.

        • C.L. Honeycutt

          Pfffhahahaha!

    • Hat Stealer

      Where can I view this ‘morn’ of which you speak? I feel like I’ve been missing out now.

      (Yes, I know it was a typo. I just thought the word ‘morn’ was so great that I had to post this.)

      • Spazticus

        Where, you ask? Star Trek: Deep Space Nine. ;) It’s also a show where you can see Dominionists who worship the Founders as gods.

  • Tel

    The woman in that stock photo looks like she enjoys whatever she’s blocking her boyfriend from seeing.

    • C.L. Honeycutt

      It’s probably an atheist blog. So immoral and yet so enticing.

    • http://absurdlypointless.blogspot.com/ TBJ

      she has one hand over his eyes and if you follow her other arm down well it sure looks like it in his lap

      • C.L. Honeycutt

        And both his arms appear to be behind his back, as if he is restrained… this image is weird.

        • http://absurdlypointless.blogspot.com/ TBJ

          She: Is wearing a man’s hat, covering a man’s eyes and seemingly satisfying her man’s need.
          He: Has his eyes covered, his hands appear to be restrained.
          Both: Have a look of surprise, not shock, upon their faces.
          My analysis of this picture: She controls his sex life as long as she approves of it.

          • C.L. Honeycutt

            To be fair, I think her arm is in the wrong position for her hand to be satisfying him, unless he’s a very impressive person. I just find it more entertaining to pretend otherwise to subvert the image. :P

  • Robyman4

    Hurrah, yet another concerted effort to replace biological explanations for human behavior with supernatural answers: YOU WATCH PORNOGRAPHY? SATAN HAS YOU NOW! So absurd.

    • islandbrewer

      We all know it’s actually aliens who are secretly here to harvest our semen!

      • C.L. Honeycutt

        But… but who will man all our boats! Fucking aliens.

  • David Mock

    Porn is cool, god is lame.

    • C.L. Honeycutt

      What about porn ABOUT God?

      • 3lemenope

        Rule 34.

        • C.L. Honeycutt

          I used to occasionally do Google searches to confirm Rule 34. Had to give it up. The involuntary eye twitches wouldn’t stop. Curiosity is worse than drugs sometimes.

          • Hat Stealer

            This is a problem I am thankful that I do not have.

          • Stev84

            Always remember that you can’t unsee things

            • C.L. Honeycutt

              Oh I know. I’m a writer in a community of mostly artists. I’ve had my characters Rule 34′d by friends just to mess with me. Believe me, I KNOW.

          • http://itsmyworldcanthasnotyours.blogspot.com/ wmdkitty

            I found this one fic that Rule-34′d Bert and Ernie.

            Cannot. Un-read.

            • C.L. Honeycutt

              Blech!

              The only one I haven’t found in art form is Where the Wild Things Are, but I haven’t looked since after that awful movie came out. I’m not going to look again. :P

              • http://itsmyworldcanthasnotyours.blogspot.com/ wmdkitty

                Yeah… some things just shouldn’t be 34′d. (My childhood has been ruined enough, thanks…)

      • David Mock

        Like nun porn? That’s pretty cool I guess.

      • Matt D

        I saw that in an episode of “Drawn Together” called “Gay Bash”.

  • GubbaBumpkin

    because bubonic plague has a mortality rate of up to 75%; if a
    proportional impact was seen among Americans who like to look at
    pictures of other people getting it on, no doubt we’d see more than a
    hundred million corpses rotting in our streets and homes.

    The viewing of pornography has a mortality rate of 100%. That’s right, every one of those people who view pornography will die some day.

    • Terry Firma

      Watching cat videos on the internet also has a 100% mortality rate. As do being an atheist, and lung cancer, and owning a cell phone.

      • http://itsmyworldcanthasnotyours.blogspot.com/ wmdkitty

        Hey, what do ya know — Life is a terminal illness, transmitted by sexual contact!

  • Ryu

    so… women can look at all the smut they want?

    • allein

      Woohoo!

    • Frank Key

      Yep, it makes them more crazy for all that good loving they get from their puritanical menfolk. Anything that shortens the amount of time given over to foreplay is quite okay with Christian men.

    • Hat Stealer

      Women aren’t visual, remember? Why, just look at those boring romance novels that women read! I’m sure the fact that they’re coved with images of half-naked men is complete coincidence, reflecting the artistic choices of the authors.

      • http://gamesgirlsgods.blogspot.com/ Feminerd

        Oh, it’s not the half-naked men, it’s the flowing locks of hair. You know how women love a good hairdo!

        /snark

  • moother

    It’s actually my girlfriend that grabs the ipad and pops on a blue movie when she’s in the mood for some happy time… She’s cool.

  • IAmA_PK

    Don’t ask me how I know this. But, my father is a Southern Baptist pastor who likes to jerk off to some pretty hardcore porn. The kicker is, when I was a teenager, and he caught me watching online porn, he lectured me on the dangers of looking at porn.

    • allein

      The danger that you might turn out to be a Southern Baptist preacher?

      • Edmond

        It sounds to me like the danger is that you might learn about your father’s porn.

        • allein

          lol…it was bad enough that I learned about my brother’s…

    • Terry Firma

      “Don’t ask me how I know this. But, my father is a Southern Baptist pastor who likes to jerk off to some pretty hardcore porn.”

      So how do you know this? ;-)

      • Spuddie

        Because no man’s porn stash is as safe as they think it is.

        That is why one needs a “throw down” stash. The one with the sedate normal stuff which is easily found. This way stop looking and don’t find the one with the real kinky weird shit.

        Guys, don’t forget to designate a “porn buddy” in the margins of your will. There are some things you just don’t want to leave to your wife, kids and other relations.

  • Raising_Rlyeh

    You’re right porn is very bad for Americans, but I have the solution. You see people would not watch other people having sex if they could have it themselves so the solution is clearly to have as much awesome and kinky sex as you possibly can. I expect to be getting a thank you note from this pastor some time soon.

    • WallofSleep

      ¿Porque no las dos?

      • Raising_Rlyeh

        cierto que ambos son buenos al mismo tiempo

      • Carmelita Spats

        Siempre es mejor si tienes las dos a la vez pero también depende de la calidad de los actores…La industria pornográfica de Kazajistán es asquerosa…Las mujeres son peludas y gordas. Los hombres sufren de tal obesidad que les tiemblan las tetas. ¡Guácala!

        • WallofSleep

          You guys are killing me here. I only took but two years of spanish several centuries ago.

          • allein

            Bing’s translator isn’t half bad… ;)

        • Raising_Rlyeh

          Lol and why go with stuff from Kazakhstan?

          • Spuddie

            A fetish for people who look like Chewbacca?

      • Kellen

        HAHAHA! The taco shell commercial! Oooh, my sister’s been making that a catch phrase lately, so when I read Raising_Rlyheh’s comment, I was thinking the *exact same thing!* Thanks for that, you cracked me up. :D

  • http://absurdlypointless.blogspot.com/ TBJ

    “an addiction as powerful as crack”

    I am wondering how he arrived at this comparison?

  • islandbrewer

    When I first read the title, I was confused about how rats could carry porn-infected fleas.

    • allein

      nanotechnology?

  • Frank Key

    Hey, when it comes to marketing, for the porn industry any news is good news.

    • baal

      Porn industry needs the help. Competing with free is a PITA.

  • Frank Key

    You know, replacing in the Bible all occurrences of ‘come’ with ‘cum’ does make for some entertaining reading.

  • Anna

    Whatever. My motto has always been, to each his own. And that’s what I like about Dennis’s initiative. He doesn’t try to buzzkill other people’s chosen gratifications (except if you’re already part of his tribe). This is good news.

    I’m not sure I agree. In a way, I think this is worse than calling for censorship. It’s the type of action that does the most damage. The people who are really negatively affected by these diatribes aren’t members of the industry or the casual porn-watching public, but those who have been indoctrinated to believe that all sexual thoughts and desires outside of marriage are evil. Their whole religion is based on inducing feelings of extreme guilt and shame when it comes to almost everything related to sex.

  • Free

    Porn, while seemingly harmless and acceptable to many, actually has more negative impacts on the health of a society than helps it. It is an exploitation usually of women. It also prays on all of our selfish tendencies and is not a substitution for true intimacy and commitment. But, because it feels good, we will sell ourselves out as responsible humanity and justify everything for the sake of pleasure. We would rather pay the cost of honest relationships and the exploitation of women than seek to place healthy boundaries for society. We are too self focused and “slaves” of pleasure. God help me. God help us!

    • cr0sh

      > God help me. God help us!

      Maybe you just need some more pr0n?

    • Noelle

      Would it blow your mind to know that couples in honest relationships enjoy consensual adult porn together?

      • RobMcCune

        That would make it the worst thing ever… harmless! God help us all!!!!

      • Free

        What is there to consent to? Don’t need to consent to the harmless. Right?

        • C.L. Honeycutt

          Remind me to treat you like the liar you are from now on after that massive piece of misrepresentation.

        • baal

          In case you’re confused about consent, whenever you touch someone, you really should have permission from that person harmless or not. In the context, the consensual part applies to the porn actors. Were they not consenting adults, it’d be rape and that’s not harmless. Interestingly enough, the same applies to the couple in the honest relationship. Absent consent, the usually word for that type of sex (even between married folks) is rape.

          You might try asking your partners if they are really willing and happy to have sex with you rather than assuming it all the time.

          • http://itsmyworldcanthasnotyours.blogspot.com/ wmdkitty

            THIS.

        • Noelle

          I don’t understand your question. What in porn is there to consent to? Um, participating in it? Pictures and videos of the rape of unwilling participants is horrible and harmful. Rape is not consent. Human trafficking is not consent. Pictures and videos of children being abused is horrible and harmful. Children cannot consent to sex. These things should be prosecuted to the full extent of the law. Adults who all agree to have sex together and have pictures and videos taken and disseminated? That’s consent. Huge difference.

        • RobMcCune

          Wrong.

    • 3lemenope

      Asking God to help you be free from pleasure is like *the most kinky* masochism fetish one can have. The shame of moral failure hurts so good.

      • Free

        Big leap there. You must be a Christian! Pleasure is created by and intended to be magnanimously enjoyed. However, God established some boundaries for maximum fulfillment. Porn, shortcuts those benefits and we settle for less. I am sorry that you can not perceive such a “freeing” reality not to be enslaved to your lusts and desires. At least that is the impression you left.

        • C.L. Honeycutt

          Your judgmentalism and claim to know that about others which only God can know is noted. Enjoy your stay in Hell, lying dimwit.

        • Oranje

          Amazing how you know exactly what the vapor-being did and why. You could get rich telling others.

        • baal

          “intended to be magnanimously enjoyed”
          Intended by whom? Biology doesn’t have a mind or overmind or over sight council. In out species, our brains in our bodies have evolved to enjoy a bunch of things; unless you or someone else is being hurt by your favorite pleasures they are not bad things! I’m sorry you’re repressed and avoiding harmless pleasure in order to please your imaginary dom in the sky.

          • http://itsmyworldcanthasnotyours.blogspot.com/ wmdkitty

            “your imaginary dom in the sky”

            Ohhhh…. the mental image that conjured up!

        • RobMcCune

          I am sorry that you can not perceive such a “freeing” reality not to be enslaved to your lusts and desires.

          That’s probably because it’s only been true for you, and you’re bound to a radical solution that forces you deny your desires for fear of losing control. At least that’s the impression you left.

    • smrnda

      What about porn featuring married couples who have been together for a while? I don’t see why porn should be *exclusive* of true intimacy and commitment.

      • free

        Intimacy requires faithfulness. It keeps a reserved place in ones heart for the other person. This enables them to be “naked” without fear of rejection. This is hard to experience when you wonder why your significant other feels the need to “need” more than you to be satisfied.

        • C.L. Honeycutt

          It’s sad and pathetic how you claim that what you want is what everyone else should have and what they “really” need, and nothing else. Why has Jesus made you so arrogant and dimly spiteful of others’ happiness in their relationships?

        • Spuddie

          Self-deceit attacks intimacy. Lying to one’s self, that one has to suppress one’s purely natural fantasies, creates tension and distress which keeps you from being intimate.

          Faithfulness seems to be strictly what you say to yourself to fight off those wicked urges. The ones which allegedly almost destroyed your marriage,.

        • RobMcCune

          I’d say that fear of inadequacy you described is a bigger impediment to intimacy than porn.

    • wabney

      Hyperbole and appeals to emotion! Yay! (snore)

      God? Which one? Proof of existence? Evidence? (snore)

    • blasphemous_kansan

      “We would rather pay the cost of honest relationships and the exploitation of women than seek to place healthy boundaries for society”

      My wife and I watch porn together. It’s fun. We are healthy, happy, functioning, and monogamous, and we find it easier to be honest with each other about our sexual needs/desires. How does that diminish the ‘honesty’ of our relationship? Your judgmental self can fuck off.

      “God help me.”

      We can only hope.

      “God help us!”

      No thanks, not into threesomes.

      • Free

        Is is possible that you and your wife are enough for one another? Is it necessary to surrender yourselves to other people having sex? Too many folks I know found that this practice made it easier for unfaithfulness in the long haul. It nearly cost me a wonderful marriage.

        • Spuddie

          Bullshit. Its like blaming a brewery and beer commercials for alcoholism.

          If you were unfaithful, it wasn’t the porn causing it or even enabling it. You had to take that extra step to take things beyond fantasy, into something else. Something other than porn.

        • C.L. Honeycutt

          Your projection of your own faults onto others is false witness. Would you like a clamp to help remove that beam from your eye?

          • Free

            I was honest with my struggle. Regardless of our opinions, the fact is that porn as a whole is damaging to relationships. Here is a link that shows facts and studies to support. (Of course if you accept facts and studies and evidence to believe something) http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Social_effects_of_pornography Unfortunately, despite the evidence, you will more than likely brush it aside and pursue what is right in your own eyes and continue to blast folks who care enough to present some caution and consideration before outright condoning something.

            • Whirlwitch

              That link talks about various studies, some with conflicting positions. In addition, I note that it’s been flagged for review as to its neutrality. In short, it does not prove what you want it to prove.

            • C.L. Honeycutt

              So you used your experience to insult someone else’s relationship, then when called out on it, you either ignorantly or dishonestly misrepresented the Wikipedia article, which explicitly describes problems with sex addicts consuming porn addictively, not with people in general consuming porn or even couples, and finished off with a preemptive dismissal, which is always a sign that someone knows they have no argument and is trying to cover it up by acting snotty.

              So much for the positive social effects of Jesus in your life. You’re the ex-drunk who demands that other people not be allowed to buy beer in “your” town.

            • Noelle

              If one were to engage in any activity to the extent one were ignoring one’s spouse, children, other loved ones, and not attending to one’s general responsibilities around the household, then of course that would cause problems. That is hardly exclusive to porn. I’ve heard more people complain about their significant other spending too much time playing video and computer games, watching sports, texting, playing games on their phone, facebooking, frequenting blogs, working, etc. than porn. But porn in excess could certainly play the same role as any of those other distractions. If you choose to watch so much porn that you don’t have time for anything else, it’s not the porn’s fault. It’s yours.

        • blasphemous_kansan

          “Is is possible that you and your wife are enough for one another?”

          What does this mean? That we can’t enjoy each other sexually without porn? You are mistaken in this hilarious assumption, I assure you. As currently phrased, your question has little meaning to me in any sense. And the christian hyper-interest in what others are doing in the bedroom continues to be creepy. Any other questions here? Want foreplay tips, maybe?

          “Is it necessary to surrender yourselves to other people having sex?”

          Again, what the hell does this mean? What does porn have to do with ‘surrender’ outside of your ridiculous bad-boy complex that you insist on projecting onto others? Your question has no meaning to me. Perhaps you’d like to rephrase?

          “Too many folks I know found that this practice made it easier for unfaithfulness in the long haul.”

          And this has exactly what to do with me? Too bad for those folks that they choose to blame others for their own failings.

          “It nearly cost me a wonderful marriage.”

          Good for you. I repeat from above: your judgmental self can fuck off. Care to ask any other questions about how I fuck? Holy crap, seriously, just because your precious little flower of a life partner couldn’t handle the thought of you whacking it to the sight of another doesn’t mean the rest of us are so limited, nor our love so conditional.

        • baal

          ” It nearly cost me a wonderful marriage.”
          Porn or adultery?
          Again, you’ve shown you don’t really understand consent or talking about your needs and wants with your partner. If your partner is unwilling or unable to meet your needs (and vice versa) a little more freedom for one or both of you might be in order.

          • http://itsmyworldcanthasnotyours.blogspot.com/ wmdkitty

            Communication!

    • Oranje

      I enjoy porn with both my wife and my girlfriend. It has its faults (as anything on the periphery tends to) but the obsession with it by the religionists borders on the unhealthy.Also, your “We are too self focused” line sounds like vintage Neil Postman.

    • Spuddie

      “WE” are too self-focused? I would say you are far too self-focused on your alleged importance and piety.

      Its to the point where you feel the need to talk down to others with self-righteous indignation and empty declarations about “true” intimacy and commitment.

      The people selling their humanity out are the ones who seek to constrain, cajole and browbeat others into a given belief. The type who believe empty accolades for God are far more important than doing things for fellow people which are actually helpful and useful.

    • Anna

      This really isn’t about porn. It’s about the fundamentalist Christian need to control sexuality. I’m sure you think it’s wrong for people to have sexual fantasies and bring themselves to orgasm, regardless of whether they’re watching porn while doing so.

    • islandbrewer

      Pizza, while seemingly harmless and acceptable to many, actually has more negative impacts on the health of a society than helps it. It is an exploitation usually of food service workers. It also prays on all of our selfish tendencies and is not a substitution for true healthy food. But, because it feels good, we will sell ourselves out as responsible humanity and justify everything for the sake of pleasure. We would rather pay the cost of honest relationships and the exploitation of food service workers than seek to place healthy boundaries for society. We are too self focused and “slaves” of pleasure. God help me. God help us!”

      Does this really make you think pizza is evil and should be avoided?

      • islandbrewer

        If you’re concerned about the exploitation of food service workers (or women in porn), then do something to empower and prevent exploitation of food service workers (or women in porn).

        The food analogy doesn’t really work, however, because pizza really actually does displace healthy food in one’s diet, whereas porn doesn’t displace healthy relationships.

        So be more worried about pizza than porn.

      • Spuddie

        Your argument is better documented and more accurate.

        Pizza is not very good for you and its delivery people are usually paid crappy wages.

        Porn’s legality, ubiquity, and its constant exploration of new media distribution methods have pretty much killed the exploitation element to the industry which was reputed during the 60′s and 70′s.

      • Free

        So we are pledging ourselves in marriage to pizza now? Far cry from inantimate objects and the real needs, feelings and make up of a human being. Nice try.

        • islandbrewer

          Porn is an inanimate object, too, oh failure-at-responding-to-an-argument. The arguments are identical, and more salient. Exploitation of food service workers is far more pernicious, and affects a greater population.

          If you’re not going to get outraged at the proliferation and plague of pizza, you’re going to have have to give a salient argument as to why, if you ever want people to take you seriously (at the moment, I doubt many will).

  • http://www.patheos.com/blogs/friendlyatheist/ Kevin_Of_Bangor

    I haven’t watched any porn in days. Been to hot and humid to rub one out.

  • maddogdelta

    I signed his wall.

    But I was too embarrassed. I used Mr. Hauf’s name…..

    My friend from high school, Jack.

  • Keulan

    I think the pastor doth protest too much.

  • Darrell Ross

    Cutting off appendages needs an update with current understandings of the mind. Back then, perhaps they thought you could have an “evil eye” or an “evil hand” but now we know it’s the brain.

    Cutting off your hand won’t help since your brain is in control.

  • http://friendlyatheist.com Richard Wade

    Funny how you never see Joe Klein successfully abstaining from pornography.

    • C.L. Honeycutt

      I needed some good porn yesterday to help with my immoral atheistic needs. Funny how Joe Klein was nowhere to be found.

      • islandbrewer

        I don’t think there’s a big market for Joe Klein themed porn.

        • C.L. Honeycutt

          He could have just started a business to get his brand of porn to me, like with Paul Newman and Newman’s Own Salad Dressing. Fucking Joe Klein.

          …salad dressing might not have been the best possible choice of examples.

  • Oranje

    I still want to see porn more in the mainstream, not allowing some of the more troubling social stigmas we still hold onto to hide and fester on the periphery, especially the treatment of women and racial stereotypes. Aside from that, I’ve worked on the outskirts of the industry for more than a decade. If they’re that worried about pretty people copulating, well, I just don’t know what to say. I wish some of the religionists would be more hyped about income inequality or environmental degradation–things that really could have a mortality rate.

  • Robster

    A million? Is that all? 1/310th of the American population. He’s not aspiring for much. there’s probably a million American christians that are freaked out by sex and have no interest due to dogmatic nonsense, or are catholic priests. Would they count? Bit like Austin Powers’ nemesis wanting “a million dollars yok yok yok”. Sounds impressive, but isn’t.


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