I don't want my child to see that trash, a woman said to me one afternoon in a convenience store. We were standing near the newspaper rack and plainly her indication was to the rack of Adult Magazines displayed there. "I don't want them to see or read that stuff, but what can I do about it. The Supreme Court has said it is all right to sell them. What's a Mother to do? Just recently our newspaper ran a feature story on a sex ring that was discovered in the New England area. Young boys were being sexually victimized by older men. They were tempted into homes where they were sexually assaulted by the lure of dirty magazines and stag films. What can we do? Is pornography, a 4 billion dollar business, here to stay? Television announced only last year that we would not be seeing as much violence on outsets, instead we would be seeing more sex. Young people are constantly assaulted by sensuous movies, sensuous music, and an increasing exposure to more and more of the anatomy. Skin is in. "It" means sex and the sex revolution is growing more popular every day. What can we do?
We can do plenty. The courts have prosecuted hundreds of pornographers. We have vast numbers of pornography laws and we have the clout to clean up our cities and our streets. But, to begin with, we have to get our heads on straight. First, there is no such thing as hard core pornography, as opposed to soft core pornography. There is no difference between Playboy, Penthouse magazines and crude television movies that promote sex, joke about divorce, applaud the "creativity of sex on the screen" or make a comedy out of sex. We should never underestimate the effects any of these will have on those who view them. Even music today is striving to please the audience sexually. The rhythm, the beat, and the words strive to give the audience sexual appeal. Many a young girl has found herself in trouble because some boy looked longingly at a centerfold hours before taking her out on a date, and, then they began necking while listening to a sexually exciting song. Effects of pornography are not restricted to men only. They affect women as well. There are magazines now that women can buy to sexually exploit men.
Secondly, we are not against- sex. Sex is good and should be enjoyed within the confines that God placed it. Two people married, pleasing one another, enjoying each other's body in the privacy of their home is good and God given. We are not against bona fide nudity in medical textbooks and art manuals, or in museums. What we are against is nudity for the sake of exploitation and the excitement of its readers.
Thirdly, we must realize that pornography usually is available to anyone regardless of age. Store clerks tell us repeatedly that children 12-13 buy as many magazines as adults. Some magazines can be found that are full of such explicit writing and detailed pictures available in vending machines to anyone with a quarter.
Fourthly, pornography usually gives the reader the wrong idea about sexuality. It lies about the needs of females and their sexuality. It lies about male sexuality and male talents for sex. It makes every woman a nymphomaniac. It tells a man that rape is a favor to a woman. It is full of these kind of lies.
Fifthly, pornography seeks to exploit women and now young children. They are displayed like meat at a counter. There are even hints at what the buyer can expect if he were to get lucky. It takes advantage of others to fill a demand that is made by those who want this type of material. Others must be exploited to fill the needs of a very limited group. We must understand, however, that even though one does not "buy these books" it does not mean that we are not allowing exploiting of others when we allow people to buy this material. Pornography is vicious and it must be dealt with viciously. But what can you and I do about it? PLENTY! Here are just a few of the things that others have tried in other cities that have worked. They come from a booklet by Neil Gallagher, called "Survival In A Sex Society".
1. Police your neighborhood stores. If you find some magazines that are inappropriate for young children displayed in the open magazine rack, pick them up and take them to the manager. Most of the time, managers of stores know very little about what vendors are putting into their stores. The embarrassment alone will be enough to convince most managers to stop the open display of such books. In most states, stores are required to keep such materials behind the counter. This insures that those buying such materials suffer the embarrassment of having to ask for them out loud.
2. Encourage your friends and neighbors to help police the area. If you do not succeed on your own, there is safety in numbers, Refuse to buy in stores that sell such magazines. With a little help from your friends, this type of clout can convince any owner of a store that he must stop selling the pornographic literature or he loses his customers.
3. Seek to establish in your community a viewing committee that will "police" the movies that are shown. You will receive criticism for this. They will call you a Censor. But, it is your child you are protecting. Such committees should review any movie considered to be rated inaccurately by the Motion Picture Industry. Many a time I have gone into a PG movie and had to leave because it was not worth adult viewing, much less children even under parental guidance.
The Bible, in Matthew Chapter 5, tells us much about the sin of "lust in the heart". To look upon a woman with lust is sin. For us to promote or allow the promotion of lust is to neglect our duty as Christians. We must abstain from every form of evil (I Thess. 5:22). We are encouraged to seek that which is honorable, just, pure (Phillippians 4). The things that pornography promotes, uncleanness, fornication, lasciviousness, are all works of the flesh (Gal. 5:18-21). We as Christians can have nothing to do with pornography.
We must be concerned about the future of our young people and of our country. Why should we not expose sin as it is, why should we not try as citizens to use our influence to keep sin from spreading? What one of us would allow our children to play in a room full of loaded shotguns, or if your best friends were to allow their child to play in that room, which one of us would not warn them, cry out that there was danger in that room? We have something just as deadly in pornography. It costs someone his soul every hour of the day. We must fight it. And expect to be persecuted.