July 2, 2020

This is the penultimate installment of my series The Porn Industry is Gaslighting Us, and it’s time for things to start getting personal. Thus far, we’ve debated over ideas such as marketing to children, addiction, availability, and whether the industry is empowering to women. But I’ve relied mostly on research and other people’s stories. The question of whether porn is private is about interpersonal relationships. This is where most of my personal pain around pornography has derived from, the impetus… Read more

June 29, 2020

Last week, Abby Johnson released a video arguing that it would be “smart” for a police officer to racially profile her biracial son. This is the most recent of many controversies surrounding the former Planned Parenthood employee, who famously quit after witnessing an abortion on a sonogram. For years, Johnson was a hero for the Pro-Life movement. She was even the subject of a movie, the independent film Unplanned. But recently, Johnson has been more of an embarrassment than an… Read more

June 25, 2020

Sarah Bernhardt, also known as The Divine Sarah, was the first modern superstar. The acclaimed actress originated roles in plays by Hugo, Dumas, and Sardou. Bernhardt was as renowned for her eccentric lifestyle as she was for her elaborate, dramatic death scenes. She was known for her many lovers, wearing a dead bat as a fashion accessory, and sleeping in a coffin.  She was less well known for her Catholic faith. *Special thanks to Steven Rosenthal for inspiration on this… Read more

June 22, 2020

Successful women in porn love to characterize the industry as a place where women can celebrate their sexual liberation. Porn showcases women’s bodies as beautiful. Women are depicted enjoying and relishing sex. Anyone who has a problem with this must really just have a problem with sex, sexuality, and women. But the reality is that the vast majority of pornography – and virtually all of the mainstream industry – only celebrates women’s bodies when they fit an unrealistic male fantasy. It… Read more

June 18, 2020

Like the phase of the moon – or my menstrual cycle – the debate surrounding Mary’s labor pain has made it’s monthly reappearance. There is a strong contingent of Catholics who think Mary did not experience any pain during Jesus’ birth. St. Augustine and St. Aquinas agreed. As do the authors of nine out of ten articles that appear on page 1 of a Google search on the topic. Interestingly, eight of these nine authors are men. The only dissenting… Read more

June 15, 2020

There’s no question that the internet transformed the porn industry. Conversely, the porn industry changed the internet. The transition from smutty movie theaters, to VHS tapes, to streaming (with many steps in between) has had a dramatic impact on how our society consumes pornography and given rise to one of the most pervasive porn myths: we should all expect free porn. If you’ve stuck around since the beginning of this series, you will recall that, while I personally do not… Read more

June 11, 2020

It has been fifteen weeks since houses of worship of all faiths and denominations in New York City closed their doors. For Catholics, this has meant fifteen weeks without sacraments. This is a profound spiritual sacrifice we made voluntarily on behalf of our community and the common good. While I have fully supported the closing of churches to protect my fellow citizens, I have felt myself slide into spiritual depression, a constant low-grade sadness at being separated from the Eucharist…. Read more

June 8, 2020

Googling “What is Porn Addiction” will bring up over 45.5 million results. First, you will see results from highly questionable sources, most of which are religiously based, claiming to help addicts treat addiction to pornography. These sources take it as a given that porn addiction is identical to drug addiction. Second, you will see a wide variety of articles claiming that there is no such thing as porn addiction. The truth, as is so often the case, lies somewhere in… Read more

June 4, 2020

Hulu’s Mrs. America isn’t just a story about the polemic powerhouse Phyllis Schlafly and her campaign to stop the Equal Rights Amendment, it’s a cutting commentary on our current political landscape, a treatise on how we got here, and a dire warning for the modern pro-life movement. Schlafly, played with ferocious poise by Cate Blanchett, led a movement of conservative women in a campaign to stop an amendment intended to help women. In doing so, they built the framework for the… Read more

June 1, 2020

Not long ago, my husband and I had a discussion about how we were going to talk to our future children about sex. It’s very important that our children learn about sex from us before they learn about sex from porn. Consequently, we decided that we need to have our first (of many) sex talks with our children when they are eight years old. To be honest, I don’t really want to talk to my kid about sex at eight…. Read more

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