In Defense of Pornography

Let’s start by making one thing clear: I like porno. My wife and I watch it together. We’ve done this for many years, with none of the terrible consequences the puritans warn you about. When you say something like this, you will tend to get the following responses:

  1. Some will use shaming tactics: words like “loser” or “geek”, and accusations of romantic incompetence.
  2. The religious types will unleash fiery sermons about the evils of pornography, based on the Bible.
  3. The would-be social scientists (often feminists) will say that porn “dehumanizes” women and causes rape and human trafficking.

Pretty harsh, is it not? Our society is almost incapable of discussing sex in a mature fashion. All three of the above tactics are some variation of either juvenile mockery or hysterical fear-mongering. None of them have any logical merit:

  1. It’s true that losers often watch porn, but that doesn’t mean that watching porn makes you a loser. This is a false syllogism, akin to saying that losers often eat junk food, therefore a bag of Doritos makes you a loser.
  2. It’s true that lust is one of the 7 Deadly Sins in the Christian religion. The others are gluttony, greed, sloth, wrath, envy, and pride. Why don’t religious folk spend as much time attacking the others? Why don’t religious folk castigate an obese or wealthy or lazy person, the way they castigate a person who watches pornography?
  3. The sociological attack on porn is eerily similar to the sociological attack on violent videogames. In fact, its tactics are almost identical: studies involving “desensitization”, examples of criminals who used one or the other (or both), etc. The two campaigns share the same flawed assumption that if you are exposed to it in your entertainment, then you will do it in real-life. Ironically enough, most of the people saying this have no problem with “The Passion of the Christ”: shouldn’t they be out crucifying someone?

A few things must be made clear to the people who use tactics like this:

To the shamers: you attack people where you believe them to be most vulnerable: their sexual pride. Accuse them of being losers, virgins, etc. This is particularly wounding to single men, especially those who have had little luck with women. As a happily married man I can easily shrug off this sort of attack, but a lot of men can’t, and that’s what you’re hoping for, aren’t you? You know exactly what you’re doing. All I can say is that this kind of tactic may be great theatre, but it’s a poor substitute for a logical argument.

To the Bible thumpers: In 1 Corinthians 5, Paul writes: “you must not associate with anyone who calls himself a brother but is sexually immoral or greedy, an idolater or a slanderer, a drunkard or a swindler.” This passage is often quoted to prove that the Old Testament’s sexual puritanism carries over into the New Testament, despite Jesus’ conspicuous lack of interest in the subject. However, you are focusing on the “sexually immoral” part of that sentence. What about “”greedy, an idolator or a slanderer, a drunkard or a swindler”?

Do you treat rich people the same way you treat the “sexually immoral”? How about people who occasionally get drunk? Do you have a large investment portfolio yourself? Why do you single out sexual immorality as a “special” sin, worthy of special attention? Is a man who occasionally watches porn worse than a man who has the occasional alcoholic drink? Alcohol kills 80,000 Americans every year according to the CDC: how many people does porn kill?

In the pantheon of sins, pornography should be weighted far below many other sins which are considered utterly mundane (or are, in the case of financial greed, actually somewhat revered in our capitalistic society). Western society’s tradition of sexual puritanism has more to do with the historical source (celibate Catholic priests) than any intrinsic moral importance.

To the feminists: I understand why you don’t like pornography. The spectre of leering, salivating men is threatening and disturbing to you, and it’s difficult to separate that image from pornography. Also, the sexual situations in porn range from romantic to downright misogynistic. There are many sexual acts in porn which you would never willingly perform. All of this adds up to your conclusion that pornography is some sort of collective assault on the dignity of women.

I hope you can see that I understand where you’re coming from, so please try to understand where I’m coming from. First, I don’t hate women. I love my wife, she loves me, and if you saw us together, you would see that I treat her with respect. Second, I agree that a lot (albeit not all) of porn is misogynistic. But I must point out that when I see that kind of porn, it turns me off. The sort of person who is turned on by misogynistic porn was already a misogynist before he saw it. Do you think he would be less misogynistic if he had no porn? Do you honestly believe Andrea Dworkin’s argument that the porn “activates” the negative impulses, as if they would have remained dormant without it?

Look around the world at countries which have outlawed porn: Islamic theocracies, North Korea, Communist China, Nazi Germany … this is not an admirable group, nor are they known for their feminism. Conversely, look at modern Germany, which has more liberal porn laws than America: its rate of sexual assault is only one quarter that of America. Objectively, if we look around the world, porn criminalization seems to be correlated to misogynism, not feminism.

Other Arguments

“What about those studies showing widespread abuse of women in the industry?”

Andrea Dworkin’s various studies are widely cited as proof, but it is generally forgotten that her research was conducted in the 1970s: an era when pornographers often faced criminal prosecution, as Screw Magazine publisher Al Goldstein did repeatedly (culminating in a 1974 conviction). In other words, she found that porn performers were treated illegally … in an era when porn itself was largely illegal! The parallels to alcohol Prohibition in the 1930s are obvious: if you outlaw a widely coveted activity, you don’t make it disappear: you merely drive it into the arms of criminals. The workers would no longer be able to seek legal recourse for abuse. Modern legal porn performers are actually much safer, becaue they work for large production companies which operate in the open, under public scrutiny. Any lingering abuses occur in the illegal parts of the industry. If you make the entire industry illegal, the problem would get worse, not better.

“Would you want your daughter to do porn?”

If I had a daughter, I would say “no”. But I would also not want her in the entertainment business at all, nor would I want her to become a soldier, where dehumanization is called “boot camp” and where they can inflict physical deprivations upon her or even send her off to die. It would be ridiculous to ban everything that I would not want my daughter doing. And quite frankly, I find it rather ridiculous to see people wearing clothes made by child labourers in China, lecturing me about not consuming a product whose production might involve exploiting someone.

“What kind of woman would do porn?”

I think we can agree that it’s probably not a very respectable sort of person. But let me ask you a question in return: what do you think she’d be like if there were no porn? Do you think she would suddenly become a nun? Or Suzie Homemaker? I think we all know she would still be having sex with random men; she would just be meeting them in bars instead of a porno movie set. These womens’ lives would not improve if porn did not exist, and the well-paid superstars (like Hillary Scott, who signed a million-dollar contract) would be much worse off than they are now.

“My wife is enough for me. I don’t need porn.”

This is a clever little shaming tactic, isn’t it? The person who uses this argument seeks to portray you as a bad husband: a man who does not find his wife desirable and therefore seeks external stimulation. But how does he show that his underlying premise (that porn means “I don’t find my wife desirable”) is true? He doesn’t; he just assumes it’s true.

If a man watches Saving Private Ryan, does it mean he finds his life unsatisfying and wishes he was fighting for his life in World War 2? Of course not, so why should we assume that a man who watches porn must find his wife unsatisfying? In fact, this argument could be applied to all matter of things that couples do in order to spice up their sex life, such as fantasy role-play, toys, or even the use of lingerie. If someone said “my wife is enough for me, I don’t need her to shop at Victoria’s Secret”, I’m sure most people would rightly think that he’s just being a self-righteous twit.

“Does porn objectify women?”

Of course it does. It also objectifies men, who have no more character depth in porn than the women do. So what? Hollywood action films objectify human beings (and in some cases, entire ethnicities or nationalities) into cartoon pop-up targets. Magazines such as Cosmopolitan and Glamour are filled with advertisements in which women are valued only for their appearance. Football games use skimpily dressed cheerleaders as human decoration. Armies objectify people into implements of war.

In fact, our entire economic system treats people as replaceable production units, and values them only for their net contribution to the GDP. Since porn superstar Hillary Scott got a million dollar contract, it seems like she is being “objectified” in a manner we would normally find quite acceptable. Or perhaps the accusation of “objectifying” women is so trite as to be meaningless.

“Does porn dehumanize women?”

What exactly does it mean to “dehumanize” someone? According to Merriam-Webster, it means “to deprive of human qualities, personality, or spirit.” I’ve seen interviews with performers like Aurora Snow and Nina Hartley; they do not seem to have been deprived of their human qualities (in fact, they were well-paid and stayed in the industry to became producers). Apart from greater athleticism, the sex acts portrayed in porno are not that much different from the sex acts performed by husbands and wives in their bedrooms. They certainly seem quite human. The accusation of “dehumanizing” women seems very similar to the accusation of “objectifying” them; something that sounds good and carries a lot of really negative connotations (it reminds us of Nazi Germany and the concentration camps, where the term really did apply), but like the public shaming tactics of the bullies, it is more theatre than logic.

“Does porn promote unrealistic images of sex?”

Of course it does. Were you expecting it to be a sex education textbook? It’s entertainment, and entertainment is always misleading. The TV show Mythbusters has done an entire series of shows devoted to “movie myths”: things people do in movies which are impossible, implausible, or suicidal in real life. Why should porn be any different? This is what movies do: they give us tarted-up versions of reality, distorted for our entertainment. If you want total realism, you should be looking for a documentary.

In fact, porn sex is more realistic than Hollywood sex. Sex scenes in Hollywood movies usually look more like wrestling than sex. Clothes are torn, dishes are knocked off tables, walls shake, people grunt like animals rather than moaning in pleasure. The mechanics are never a problem in Hollywood movies: no one ever fumbles for anything, or has to guide his penis into the love cave with his hand, or has trouble getting into a position. If you want to complain about unrealistic depictions of sex, maybe you should be looking at Harlequin romance novels and Hollywood movies, not porn. At least porn performers are limited by the fact that they are actually having real sex, so there’s only so far that they can deviate from reality.

In a Nutshell

Sorry, but a thoughtful argument, even when highly compressed, cannot really be summarized in a nutshell. You can do that with arguments based on emotionally loaded words like “dehumanize”, but if you scrolled down here looking for a ten second sound-bite to save you the trouble of reading the article, you’re out of luck. Go back and read the page, please.

47 Responses to In Defense of Pornography

  1. Nate says:

    Hi Mike,
    I wandered over here from SCL, where I see a lot of your posts and find you to be thoughtful, articulate, and interested in discussion. (I think you may have called it raucous disagreement, or something to that effect) This post on porn caught my eye, as I too like porn — which is a drag, because it makes it tougher to resist. You make a lot of good points in general around this topic, so I guess I will offer my point of view towards why I think resisting porn is a good idea. I think, from looking around your site a bit (and I applaud your openness — does not seem like you are hiding much) that you and I would agree that we both value marriage. You have been married quite awhile, have overcome various obstacles to maintain that relationship, etc. and I have been married 15 years and am committed to staying married till death do us part.
    This next assumption I am not as sure on, so you can clarify your pov if you want, but think we’d both agree that a good sex life contributes well to maintaining a good marriage, and conversely a lousy or nonexistent sex life would make the marriage difficult to sustain. (Though I’m sure there are outliers where people with crappy sex lives stay married)
    So, I want a good marriage, and good sex with my wife, and that is why I choose to resist looking at porn for three reasons.
    1. My wife does not want to be compared to other women. Like most guys, I am pretty visual when it comes to sex (one of the reasons for porns appeal) and she knows this. My wife is very attractive, but she is her own worst critic too. Adding a layer of constant comparison to other women does nothing to enhance her perception of herself, or her interest in sharing her body with me. Best results for us are when she knows she is my one and only, and that I find her appealing.
    2. It’s better if I don’t compare my wife to other women. Not just in a physical “looks” sense either. I’m sure not all porn girls have “10″ looks, and like I said, my wife is attractive. The more dangerous part is me saying “all these girls want sex all the time, are willing to try this and that and the other thing, etc” which then is a short step to dissatisfaction with my own reality because it makes me ask “Whats wrong with you? Why aren’t you like all these other women?” So even if I have a good sex life, I view it as not good (enough) leading to negative repercussions in our marriage.
    3. It can short circuit “the cycle” – basically I’m always in the mood, she needs more time, attention, etc to get there. Me thinking “Hope we have sex soon” is a constant reminder to be nice to my wife, and to do things that will help her to feel loved/romanced/sexy/ d. all of the things it takes to help sex happen in married life with jobs, kids, schedules, etc. So me focusing on her, and being motivated to be nice to her helps everything to go round… But, if its me and my hand getting off in front of the computer, yeah I’ve got my release and am then less motivated to care for my wife and her needs. Plus, it does nothing to bring me closer to my wife, proving counterproductive to marriage.
    Now, I realize that I am arguing purely from experience, and I realize that you already know this, as you are one of the most logical dudes out there… I know that your experience is different than mine, so I guess the question is what if anything can be generalized from our dissimilar experiences? Is it simply a “to each his own” conclusion, or is one of our experiences “valider” ( yes, I made that up) meaning our point of view should be more normative. I am sure you have thoughts on this, and I’d like to hear them…
    Nate

  2. Michael Wong says:

    Hello, Nate. Good to hear your marriage is doing well. And yes, I think we’re both on the same page regarding the importance of a healthy sex life to a healthy marriage. Now, regarding the individual points you make:

    Point #1: “My wife does not want to be compared to other women“. Yes, I agree that your wife surely does not want to be compared to other women. However, I would argue that mainstream Hollywood is actually much worse for this than porn is. In mainstream Hollywood, they use every trick in the book to make their leading ladies look perfect. Porn is produced on much lower budgets, and it is much worse at hiding the imperfections of performers. You can often see cellulite on porn performers, wrinkles, jiggles, and other imperfections.

    A good example of this is breast implants: many women in Hollywood have breast implants, but you will NEVER see the resultant surgical scars or unnatural lumpiness in a Hollywood movie. I’ve seen those things plenty of times in porn movies (albeit not the glossy high-end productions you get in hotel pay-per-view porn; it’s actually better to watch the lower-budget stuff, as long as you avoid the real bottom of the barrel). My wife actually says she feels better about herself knowing that women with so many visible imperfections are actually starring in porn movies and viewed as sexually desirable. I suspect a lot of women would also be secretly pleased to see the unpleasant side-effects of breast enlargement surgery being shown on-screen for all to see.

    At the heart of all this is the idea that a wife might feel threatened by the possibility of comparison, and that possible sources of comparison should be shunned in order to avoid this. I think that this is really just avoiding the situation rather than confronting it. Reality tells us that people get older and eventually lose their looks. Even a world-class beauty will eventually find that men stop turning to look at her when she walks by. Marriage is based on the mutual understanding that you will be together and desire no other, even when you’re both old, wrinkled, and gray. I don’t mean to sound depressing, but there will be a point when you cannot keep insisting that either of you compare well to people you walk by on the street, never mind people you see on the screen. The whole idea of marriage is that you shouldn’t care. Trying to block out those other people is not the answer.

    Point #2: “It’s better if I don’t compare my wife['s adventurousness] to other women“. I see what you mean about comparing your wife’s adventurousness to that of women in porn movies. Again, though, I would point out that regular movies do the same thing: everyones’ lives are so exciting and interesting in regular movies. They can make a regular person’s life seem quite boring by comparison. As long as you understand and recognize that these people are being paid to be “extreme”, then you should hopefully not get the impression that your wife is boring just because she doesn’t act the same way. I’ve seen interviews with porn stars where they say that after all the acrobatics they do in movies, when they get home and have sex with their partners they want to just relax and lie back.

    Having said that, porn does sometimes encourage a couple to try things they might not have otherwise tried. However, it does not make you compare your wife unfavourably to other women; you could do that with or without porn. Just knowing that other women are willing to do certain things could put that idea into your head, regardless of whether you watch video depictions of those acts.

    I would also repeat what I said earlier about comparisons in general.

    Point #3: “I’ve got my release and am then less motivated to care for my wife and her needs“. This is an argument against watching it by yourself in secret, not against watching it with her. Also, even if you do watch by yourself, the theory assumes that masturbation takes the place of sex in a relationship, but some sex experts claim the opposite: that people who masturbate more also tend to have sex more. It may be more like exercise: people who exercise tend to find that they have more energy in the rest of their lives, not less. You suggest that it “does nothing to bring me closer to my wife”, but if you watched it together, that would not necessarily be the case (mind you, the trick is to find porn that you could both enjoy, and I’d estimate that not even 5% of modern porn is really good for couples, so you have to be selective).

    In Conclusion: our experiences do seem to be different, but that may simply be that your experiences with porn have not moved past the “secret illicit thrill” stage and its attendant excitement level. That changes when you watch porn with your wife. Your brain is like a pattern recognition machine: it is conditioned by everything you do. That’s why we build up bad habits so easily. Watching porn with a partner actually breaks the cycle of illicit porn use rather than strengthening it, because if you watch it primarily with your wife, then you will learn to associate porn with marriage rather than infidelity.

    This is really important and bears elaboration: humans are creatures of habit and are easily conditioned. Every time you watch porn in secret, you are reinforcing the conditioned response that porn is an illicit thrill: a tasty but forbidden fruit. This terrible cycle, described by so many “family values” conservatives, begins to form. You swear off the stuff, then you occasionally “fall off the wagon” and watch some. Each time this happens, you’re burning that pattern deeper and deeper into your brain: a pattern which says “porn is exciting and thrilling, in a way that my marital sex life is not”. Then you realize with horror that this is happening, so you swear off it again. But porn is so easy to acquire, so you’re bound to fall off the wagon again in the future, and so on and so forth. Each time the cycle repeats, this mental association grows stronger.

    However, by watching it together, you break the cycle. Now, each time you watch porn, you are burning a different pattern into your brain. Each time you watch it with your wife in bed, you are associating it something you do together. In your brain, you are associating it with her, instead of associating it with an alternative to her. If you do this hundreds of times, you can almost totally destroy that association of illicit thrill-seeking and porn. That’s what has happened in my case. To me, porn is not an illicit thrill; it’s something my wife and I do for fun, and that’s all.

  3. Nate says:

    Mike,
    Interesting stuff. At the risk of sounding like a fervent fundamentalist, I’ll readily concede that mainstream Hollywood is full of deception and most of the movies about relationships and sex are quite unlike real life. (which underlines the unbelievable irony that our culture cares about what actors and actresses think about relationships, or anything for that matter. Most can’t stay married for more than 3 years… But I digress)
    So, I don’t bother watching much of what comes out on movies or television. I guess you could say that this is shunning things that could cause comparison, but there comes a point of “Why bother?” I could eat 3 pounds of Twizzlers candy, but why would I? (Actually, bad example — I think Twizzlers taste like red plastic) I get what you are saying that:
    “Marriage is based on the mutual understanding that you will be together and desire no other, even when you’re both old, wrinkled, and gray. I don’t mean to sound depressing, but there will be a point when you cannot keep insisting that either of you compare well to people you walk by on the street, never mind people you see on the screen. The whole idea of marriage is that you shouldn’t care. Trying to block out those other people is not the answer.”
    This is good news for you — otherwise you’d have to watch porn with older and uglier people in it each day, and that could get kinda horrible :)
    Your point #2 — you advocate us remembering they get paid to be extreme. Easier said than done. I suppose I might be able to compartmentalize to that effect somewhat, but my poor wife is already bombarded by 4000 marketing messages a day, many of them airbrushed, and most of them designed to create dissatisfaction (so we can fix ourselves by buying and using their product) You would think that the one place we could give her a break would be the bedroom?
    Your point #3 — I find it interesting that you have a fair number of “guardrails” for successful porn watching – your original post was just aimed at deconstructing typical antiporn sentiments, but you have started writing “Porn for Dummies” (no need to thank me when you publish, just send royalties :) You are pretty clear that one should always watch with their spouse, and to stick to the 5% of worthwhile stuff — not so polished that its unrealistic (though we have already agreed that their behavior is unrealistic) but not so raunchy that its unbearable. So you have a philosophy of porn, and I wonder how did you arrive at that, and maybe more importantly what principles govern it? For example, how would you go about deciding whether or not it was a good idea for the porn actors, instead of being on your TV, to do their thing on the floor in your house? Then how about instead of staying on the floor, whether or not they can hop in the sack with you and your wife?
    Maybe a different tack would be, how have you explained your perspective to your boys, as in “This is OK, and here is why, this is not OK and heres why”
    How do you differentiate between “love” and “lust” or don’t you necessarily differentiate?
    In your conclusion, you talk about the whole imprinting/conditioning thing, which does have some validity I think. You have a pretty good handle on the “wagon ride” of resisting and giving in to temptation. Of course, giving in is the easiest way to get rid of temptation — my sister in law bought a pack of Klondike bars, ate one, and put the rest in the freezer. It was so good, she was tempted to eat another, so she did. Then she spent the afternoon being tempted by the remaining 4 left in the freezer. So, in order to get rid of that temptation, she pulled them out and ate them! In her defense, she was pregnant, but 6 Klondike bars in an afternoon! Clearly, that would not kill her, but the point being aren’t there many things we are tempted by that we *should* resist on and ongoing basis (regardless of how ubiquitous the temptation is)?
    Do you give any validity to the idea of a conscience, and the concept that we ought not to just violate it repeatedly, just so it can stop bugging us?
    – Nate

    • Michael Wong says:

      Hello again, Nate. You write:

      I suppose I might be able to compartmentalize to that effect somewhat, but my poor wife is already bombarded by 4000 marketing messages a day, many of them airbrushed, and most of them designed to create dissatisfaction (so we can fix ourselves by buying and using their product) You would think that the one place we could give her a break would be the bedroom?

      Nate, I think we’re mixing two points together here. The airbrushed marketing messages have to do with appearances, which I already discussed by pointing out that porn women are generally far more realistic than Hollywood or glamour magazine women. Even those who have breast implants realistically show the negative side-effects of those implants. The other point was your concern that women would feel threatened by the more “adventurous” women in porn. It’s interesting that no one ever worries that men will feel threatened by the male actors in porn, who are also more “adventurous”, and who are also … ahem … very “well endowed” compared to the average man. Why not? Why don’t most men feel terribly inadequate when they watch porn? Answer that, and perhaps you will understand why women don’t have to feel inadequate when they watch porn.

      You also ask:

      So you have a philosophy of porn, and I wonder how did you arrive at that, and maybe more importantly what principles govern it?

      Nate, I think you’re seriously overthinking this. My philosophy of porn is actually very simple, and boils down to exactly four words: what does Rebecca like? This is an entertainment activity we’re participating in together, and tastes are subjective, so I go with what she likes. That’s the general rule: find out what your wife enjoys. Of course, this is going to be tricky if she’s so hung-up that she won’t even consider watching it, but if she would relax and be open-minded about it, I am 100% sure that she would also find that she enjoys some of it far more than the rest. The reason for my 5% rule is simple observation rather than some elaborate philosophical rationalization: most of the porn I’ve seen just doesn’t work for her, and therefore doesn’t work for us. It’s probably because it’s oriented toward male raincoaters.

      You also ask:

      Maybe a different tack would be, how have you explained your perspective to your boys, as in “This is OK, and here is why, this is not OK and heres why”

      Honestly, this is a really bizarre question. Do you really think I would talk to my boys about which kind of porn we prefer? We don’t let them watch porn, so how and why could we possibly have that conversation?

      Regarding your last point, I think you seriously misconstrued my argument. You seemed to grab it, take it into your forge, and hammer it until it looks like something you would hear in church. An argument about training your brain to associate naughty thoughts with your wife instead of associating them with subterfuge and escape from your wife somehow became:

      giving in is the easiest way to get rid of temptation

      which is not at all what I was saying. You finished with:

      Do you give any validity to the idea of a conscience, and the concept that we ought not to just violate it repeatedly, just so it can stop bugging us?

      Is this really the kind of discussion you want to have from this point forward? You’re just going to assume that I’ve been lying this whole time and that I actually secretly agree that porn is immoral, but I watch it anyway because I don’t listen to my conscience, if indeed I even have one? Because if this is going to be about ridiculous one-dimensional cartoon stereotypes and unbelievably passive/aggressive questions like this (and I’m starting to see your bizarre question about my boys in a whole new light as well), then I’ll have to shift gears. Up until this point, I had thought you were interested in a serious conversation.

  4. Gracen says:

    Hope you don’t mind I cited this on my ‘ethics of pornography paper.’ Pretty enlightening, I’ll admit! You provide a lot of thought, reason, and intelligence in your argument. And this is coming from somebody who doesn’t like porn. ;-)

  5. Nate says:

    Hi Mike,
    Let me back up a little… In your original post “In Defense of Pornography” you addressed 3 specific arguments against porn that you consider to be weak. I wondered if I could present a stronger argument than the three you discussed, so I tried to do that. In our discussion that followed you have explained the positives of how porn works for you, and in doing so you have also outlined what doesn’t work, clarifying that you are not trying to defend all porn as good porn as one might construe from the title.
    Here is my opinion, and we’d have to find stats to prove or disprove, but my theory is that you are breaking the curve. So you are on one side, with porn not ruining your life at all, and Ted Bundy is on the other side, and the majority of guys are somewhere in between. (And some are wearing raincoats) So I’d say you are exceptional, and that most are not going to be able to handle it like you do. The crux of your argument is that it’s all about the imprinting, and if guys would just change how they go about it, they could reverse the imprinting, and make porn work for them and their relationships instead of against it. And here is where I think you and I would agree that we disagree: I buy into the imprinting argument to a point, but I strongly feel that there are so many more factors than straight behavioral conditioning that come into play, in this situation and in life as a whole. I think if behaviorism was the answer that Walden II would actually exist somewhere other than the pages of a paperback I own. There are other points in this discussion I might quibble over, but do you agree that this is the main issue? I am interested in a serious conversation, even though I know I won’t change your mind. I don’t plan to change my mind either, so I’d understand if you don’t want to deal with me — but honestly, I am thinking and learning by talking to you… — Nate
    p.s. Fun fact of the day– I actually took a (future) porn star to her prom, back in 1989.

    • Michael Wong says:

      Nate, your problem is that you do not understand the burden of proof. Do you believe in the concept of innocence until proven guilt? You keep thinking that I need to provide evidence that porn is not guilty of all the wild accusations flung at it, but that’s not how it works. You’re making wild accusations (like just now, saying that Ted Bundy’s behaviour was caused by porn) without so much as a shred of evidence, and then acting as if they are perfectly reasonable unless I can produce evidence that they are not true. Imagine if criminal trials or civil lawsuits were conducted this way.

      You say I’m “breaking the curve”, but you’re missing the entire point, which is that the anti-porn arguments rely on assumed cause-and-effect mechanisms. These mechanisms are proposed without any kind of valid supporting evidence: the correlations they use are of such poor quality as to be utterly laughable. If one can “prove” that porn causes sexual violence by noting that most rapists use porn, one could also “prove” that foul language causes sexual violence, because most rapists use foul language. See how ridiculous that is? The point here is that if I can show that this cause and effect mechanism does not necessarily exist (and it certainly does not, in my case), then any argument which relies upon its existence is based on air. This means you need to come up with some other kind of evidence, and saying (in effect) “oh yeah? Well you can’t prove it’s not true” is just theatrical posturing. It’s certainly not a logically valid argument.

      • Darrus says:

        Speaking on ‘theatrical posturing’ it’s not also a logical valid argument to round up countries who outlaw porn as: Islamic theocracies, North Korea, Communist China, Nazi Germany etc Whilst that part is true, so is the fact that Iceland and the Philippians (to name a few) are tough on pornography (Iceland according to wiki outlaws any kind)

        So while I understand your points the idea countries that ban pornography are the ones (in your eyes) that have some form of moral and social decay is just tabloid scaremongering.

        I agree that porn goes hand in hand with sex life but I don’t agree that it should be encouraged more as you would like. Porn CAN make people more misogynistic (The wrong type anyway) some may view it as entertainment but others may view it as a form of self empowerment and that is dangerous.

      • Michael Wong says:

        Iceland is an exception, but not a huge exception: it does lag behind many other countries in terms of womens’ rights. In fact, the UN Human Rights Committee in 2005 expressed concern about its extremely high burden of proof requirements for rape. I don’t even know why you mention the Philippines; they are an ultra-religious country where people literally flog themselves bloody at Easter and Jehovah’s Witnesses have been murdered for sectarian reasons.

        As I said, there is a correlation between countries that outlaw pornography and countries that have a low regard for womens’ rights. This completely demolishes the anti-porn prediction that the opposite correlation should exist. The weakness and small number of your counter-examples, if anything, only proves my point. This correlation does not have to be perfect in order to show that the opposite correlation obviously doesn’t exist, and that the anti-porn fearmongers’ predictions are obviously wrong.

        Also, your grasp of logic seems rather weak. First, you don’t seem to understand the whole purpose of that correlation, hence your bizarre belief that if it is anything less than absolutely perfect, then it doesn’t prove my point. Second, my rebuttal of anti-porn fearmongering does not constitute pro-porn fearmongering: you’re just playing this “both sides are equal” equivocation game which is popular among people who don’t bother trying to understand an issue, but instead think they can sound reasonable by declaring themselves to be in the middle. Third, you say that porn can make people more misogynistic, but you provide not a shred of evidence for this statement. Worse yet, you did this immediately after accusing me of dishonesty for backing up my claims with a correlation which is only strong and not perfect.

      • SC says:

        See I don’t even need to read this whole post to respond…I don’t need proof to know that you are not making intelligent conclusions about what porn does or doesn’t contribute to with regards to sexual or violent crimes…because the whole thought that any one thing make any one do something has no merit ….period. However, porn serves as a catalyst for the individual who is already challenged morally, morals Mike …the difference between what is right and wrong, learned or innate….You can’t sell me on this, this is transparent. Prostitution, why is it illegal. You haven’t lived a real life…no joke. It takes real people who live real life and experience hardships go through shit ….not to say you haven’t…we don’t know what drove Ted Bundy …we don’t know why Jeffery Dalmer ate up those menzz but we do know most all crimes committed that are of sexual nature have “guuuueees what in common” porn usage lol how do we know this, statical data yea good old data….you sit here and try to trivialize it “porn” like it’s I don’t know a game of twister like it has no impact, like watching something that intimate between two people whether straight, rape, bondage or otherwise has no impact hey honey that was a great film lol 8 out of ten stars…I’d like to recommend it at the next book club……How are you going to state that a woman who does not watch porn is uptight ….where is this information founded from….prooof Mike proof

      • Michael Wong says:

        I love the way you say right up-front that you don’t have to bother reading my arguments to know that they’re wrong. You are not part of the solution; you are part of the problem. You work on gut instinct and cherry-picked examples and ignore much larger data sets which contradict your conclusions. In fact, you probably don’t even understand the previous sentence.

  6. Lila says:

    Hmm, Mr. Wong, if you don’t mind me asking, but what is your opinion on prostitution? Like legalized pornography versus the countries that outlaw it, do you think there would be a shift in perception and criminal activity?
    Personally I think so, but I like hearing other thoughts on the matter.

    • Michael Wong says:

      Well, if prostitution were legalized, then it would no longer be “criminal activity”, would it? I think that, rather than asking people to justify why it should be legalized, we should be asking why it’s criminalized in the first place.

    • BriBrit says:

      I know it is Christian based (but isn’t much of political correctness inherited from Christianity? but seeing as you like to hear other people’s views I recommend Divine Sex Liberating Sex from Religious Tradition
      Philo Thelos Its available online. He deals with prostitution head on. Please let me know what you think.

      • Daltoid says:

        I will check it out.. I think I found a trivial quote related to the issue of sacred sex or denying the possibility. I think that when we ask ourselves what porn is actual a purpose for then we can really understand the benefits if it it a given that it be non abusive. The purpose might be to stave off desire and so copulation so the life cycles in the spiritual connection of people. This is how far people go in substitution of carnal desires in contact. It aught be a monthly ceremony of non-harmful interaction in catering to the women who need servicing to put another slant on our cyber punk economic funk of broken society and depraved loveless humanoids.

      • Daltoid says:

        (This aught be after having read my other comment) The second use then is; if there are people who happen to be boring dry shites then I suppose it’s useful… but some of the stuff aught not be encouraged. I hope it’s fake at least. Warped or what! Different strokes for different folks aught be curtailed and monitored. The same abusives unreputable stuff seems to be amongst other reputable and beautiful stuff. I think perhaps as much as considering people aren’t really designed to be monogamous and we need the spice of life to encourage each other I would be of the opinion that we have half the world stuck in relationships, bored and the other half depraved. Like a feckin Zen mash where most are unfulfilled. I must love often but not often enough that I’d get an STI… Fat chance of that happening of late though! ha, Peace.

      • Daltoid says:

        An artist needs his muse after all!

        Now to get the job to get the girl to have the meal to find out she wants only to be wed and the 21euro bottle of vino is ruined. foooookkkk!

        I find the hippy lifestyle increasingly attractive an option.

  7. Dee says:

    Have you seen what is out there now on the Internet. Type porn into Google. The first site that comes up for me is a free-to-view site offering all manner of “delights”. Multiple penetrations, simulated rape scenes, fisting, brutal anal sex and more that I just couldn’t bring myself to look at. Some of this is on the landing page; no need to go searching. There seems to be penchant for female models who look very young too.

    Scary indeed. Sickening in fact. And it’s free. And very, very popular!

    By not addressing the nastier end of porn, you are supporting it in my opinion. You need to consider the wider issues, and, importantly, so does your wife. In my experience, men lie about the extent of their interest in porn.

    • Michael Wong says:

      You wrote: “In my experience, men lie about the extent of their interest in porn“. That’s because they are often married to women with whom they cannot be honest. I do not have that problem. My wife and I are completely open with each other, and that includes the porn. That is, in fact, one of the big points I was trying to make.

      Also, you wrote that “By not addressing the nastier end of porn, you are supporting it in my opinion“. Leaving aside the obvious flaws in the logic of saying that someone must be fond of anything he does not try to criminalize, you are blurring the line between “nasty” and “illegal”. There is plenty of nasty porn out there, and I do in fact address it, by pointing out that the sort of person who is turned on by misogynism must have already had misogynistic tendencies before he ever saw it. The idea that such a person’s misogynistic urges would somehow remain “dormant” without porn is completely absurd; the world’s most horrendously misogynistic places are often run by Islamic fanatics who outlaw porn completely.

      I’m sorry you were somehow unable to understand the points I clearly laid out. Of course, it’s entirely possible that you just skimmed over them, without really taking the time to read and understand them. This is common when people read material about a subject which they find to be uncomfortable.

      • SC says:

        Mike your not being honest….This is porn- a cheap thrill- had it, done it. What are you talking about it’s degrading and it objectifies it’s subject man woman or child…..you are seriously trying to put an adult twist on this by stating its use as nasty, illegal or classy…..is there classy porn I missed it, because the porn we were watching was exactly what it was supposed to be raw …I don’t get it this thread what is the premise….

      • SC says:

        Mike who says you can’t be honest with your spouse because she might no be okay with you wanting to see the inside of some other woman’s cooch …isn’t honesty what you promised? See this shit pisses me off….my husband told me I didn’t head hunt him or leave him I simply told him if you continue to do it behind my back …you lose me and you won’t even know it…..so you make the choice…do you need porn like you need food….don’t insult people because they don’t have the so called open relationship that allows you to have your cake and eat it too…You skirt around any issues, you have no grounds…simple your wife and you get off on watching porn together and thats ok but don’t try to say that there is any legal classy porn that serves as a healthy aphrodisiac

      • Michael Wong says:

        Your ranting about pornography is nothing more than an expression of your anti-sex attitude. You say it’s “degrading” … why is it degrading? You won’t admit it, but you think it’s all “degrading” because you’re a sexist and you think sex itself is inherently demeaning to women. Yes, women can be sexist too; just ask the women in Middle Eastern countries who defend the burkha. Ever notice that no one ever says that porn is “degrading” to the male performers?

        You simply took offense at the fact that I said women who rabidly hate all porn as you do are obviously prudes. Well too bad; the fact that you take personal offense at something doesn’t make it untrue.

  8. Rick Cross says:

    Hi Mike,

    I stumbled across stardestoyer.net which lead me to your blog. From your posts that I’ve read so far, you sound like a very logical person and someone I agree with.

    I have no problems with the legal porn industry which makes sense to me as I’m a social liberal and economic conservative. (I dunno about Canada, but on this side of the border, that makes me a Libertarian.) But, while I don’t have a problem with it, I also no longer watch it. Honestly, I found it boring after the first five minutes. LOL Then again, overall I even find most sports boring to watch.

    Anyway, keep up the great posts. The world needs more sane, logical thinkers expressing their views.

    • Michael Wong says:

      You’re certainly right about porn being mostly boring. I would guesstimate that roughly 95% of it is crap. There is so little creativity and imagination in it, and a lot of porn producers try to be funny by making jokes, when the great humour of porn tends to lie in being “so bad it’s good”, a la “Plan 9 From Outer Space”.

      When porno is funny, it’s rarely because of a well-written gag. It’s usually because it’s so poorly acted that you have to laugh. They should go for camp and cheese, with scenes that are written straight but wildly overacted.

      Mind you, that just covers the setup. The sex itself tends to be boring unless it’s done right, which requires lots of camera angle switching, changing of tempo or position, dialogue which feels more authentic than the usual “oh yeah oh yeah” etc, and no slow motion. Whoever thought slow motion and soft focus are good for porn is brain-damaged.

  9. cat says:

    Well stated opinions. I think the anti-porn crusade does not look at the many varieties of porn.

    Yes there is violent crap, but there is also porn showing beautiful expressions of human sexuality with people being kind and completely consensual and respectful of each other.

    I agree that mainstream movies, magazines, and tv are far worse, pushing a hopeless ideal to us, so that we buy more products.

    • Michael Wong says:

      I would actually argue that even porn which shows some (mild) disrespect or non-consensuality should be considered acceptable. The extreme material is rather disturbing, but people get a kick out of being the “bad guy” sometimes. It doesn’t mean they’re secretly rapists, any more than kids who enjoy play-acting as Darth Vader secretly want to murder and enslave people.

      I remember being surprised when my wife said she liked certain scenes which involved some kind of (often financial) coercion, if they were done right. I expected she would not, but that’s just because I was brainwashed into thinking that porn should be taken really seriously, and that anything you like in porn should be something you would like in real-life. That’s not true at all; people don’t have to take porn more seriously than they take any other kind of movie.

      People can get turned on by fantasy versions of activities they would never actually do in real-life. Have you ever watched kids play-acting with toy guns? Have you ever noticed that they usually enjoy getting “killed” during this type of play, often doing so with gusto and various dramatic flourishes? Why can’t adults enjoy play-acting things they would never do in real-life? Why should we assume that a woman who wants to role-play a “masked intruder” scenario would actually want to be raped? That’s just completely absurd, and yet people tend to think that way.

      • SC says:

        Lol they’re kids that most likely wouldn’t even be able to rationalize the true gravity of death …

      • Michael Wong says:

        Kids understand death from a much younger age than you think. It’s only over-protective asinine puritanical parents who think their kids don’t know anything about life, sex, or death. But of course, you have already established earlier what a prude you are.

  10. Kim Tiu says:

    I come from the Philippines where porn is technically illegal under the law and yet many are making and watching it under the radar, with the police turning blind eye. Feminists and religious groups go denounce porn, but then its like Hate Week in 1984.

    Well, in the end, countries that ban porn do have still a lively though underground porn industry. If I was a congressman in the Philippine congress, I would appeal the anti-porn law on constitutional grounds.

    Granted, there are many people in the right, and left, and center that defend and love porn as well as those who hate it. It’s just crosses the political lines.

    Granted, we do oppose certain kinds of porn such as those involving children, which is mostly forced, anyway, but then we are not to be inhibited. Humans do have sex all the time, and porn is needed to show what should they do and not do for sex.

    Besides, the criticism of feminists and certain religious people makes them hypocrites. Remember the piles of porn Bin Laden had when he was killed? Well, that means that it is really safe to watch and imitate porn after all. Anti-porn devices and movements are just forms of thought control.

    Banning porn is like banning alcohol: there will be loopholes, and loopholes the abusers will abuse.

    And the argument that all media should be “family-friendly” is hogwash. Life is family-unfriendly; it depends upon the family itself to show what to censor and not to censor. Putting it on the hands of government or church will be disastrous.

    BTW, I am also a sci-fi, anime, and alternate history fan. I do disagree with certain politics, but this time we agree. I prefer Japanese animated porn and porn by East Asian actors/actresses.

    • Michael Wong says:

      It doesn’t surprise me that the Philippines is very puritanical about pornography, given the heavy religious influence in your society. Are there penalties for possessing it?

  11. SC says:

    @ Nate, wherever you came from send more! Whether you gained that mature selfless attitude through your own growing pains or from some hard lessons, you learned that you are not the only one involved in that marriage and that will make for a good marriage and a lifelong friend, one that will always have your back because you had hers.

    Yes, I know women can be needy in a way that men can’t stand – I get that, hence I am all woman.. Many many men love to watch porn, it’s a release with no commitment, no worries, and no bitching …. wow! no concerns you don’t have to worry about pleasing her because you are the big guy in charge, your running the show, that young girl bent over taking it up the ass wants you, if only you were there….men lol simple very little minds, not all but more than not. I mean how does it get any better, there’s no complaining from her, other than how big it is and well she just can’t take it, and of course she likes it all down her face – who can argue with that ending lol! What a fantasy…..and to say it doesn’t objectify woman you my friend would have to be on crack. You just don’t care that it does, because then that would mean you actually would have to think about something other than your dick and your dick likes being stroked by that fantasy.

    Yet, I’m not so sure any one man would sit with his wife/girlfriend and enjoy seeing a man getting pummeled by a hot chick with a big 9 inch strap on ..shoving that down his throat making him suck it or better yet, sticking her finger so far up his ass she can tickle his lower intestines LOL!! And we know men lie about that, they love it! I am not a feminist by any means, I actually believe in traditional roles and I believe in great HOT damn sex “with my husband only” and if my man falls short he’s gonna hear about it in a nice tactful, respectful way the same as I am SURE I would…..we used to watch porn together, and we had a great sex life before and after ..and then he started watching it by himself, you know why, not because of anything he was missing, or that I was doing, simply because he had rooted shit and he was serving himself and not with our best interest at heart. That was a release for him during an argument or when he got bored, but you it took away from our intimacy because like Nate said, he would take care of himself and then wouldn’t have anytime for me and I get damn horny and want to screw too, I have needs too. I don’t have to be a man to have carnal needs…So because of his selfishness his ass couldn’t stay with it and that’s how I found out there was someone else sleeping in my bed getting my nut……uh uh not cool with that, all that masturbating stuff when your by yourself and single is aaaye okay but when you got it at home grow the f..k up! Talk about that shit because PORN it’s addictive and just plain ol f….cked up for the person who doesn’t have vices…

    With that being said, I would agree is about personal preference. Some couples can have that in their life simply because that share that same thoughts about it and come from the same cloth …others, have different values and there is absolutely nothing that makes me twisted, uptight or prude because I have moral beliefs or because i believe in God, like you said Nate, you do not want obstacles that might serve as poison in your relationship and porn can and to say otherwise, is simply lying – Period.

    There is absolutely without doubt NO WAY a man can watch porn on a regular basis ( two three times a week) and one, call it leisure or two, call it healthy. He will bring those visual into the bedroom most definitely. He just watched Amy eat Lisa and do Bob so how hot is that right, now he has his wiiiiife sexy as she may be, either playing the game to please him and giving you the uuuuuuhhh yea yea faking or she’s fantasizing about Amy and Lisa, not you…ask your wife lol.. You guys have made an agreement to let each other have your fantasies outside of your marriage and use those as fuel for your hot sex life…and you believe it’s healthy and safe because it’s just porn….and as someone said, to each’s own- absolutely……But please don’t insult women who have healthy appetites when it comes to sex and don’t need the tube as a third wheel……

    Now, on the other hand, maybe your girlfriend/wife is genuinely okay with it and likes to participate in the fantasy because more than likely she’s got fantasies of her own that you don’t have much to do with ..so it makes the playing field even. Men should realize woman are much better at the game and way worse when it comes to deceit so be very careful what you fantasize about ..you just might get your feelings hurt in the end…

    • Michael Wong says:

      I love the way you alternate between saying it’s totally OK to like porn, and then ranting that there’s “NO WAY” it’s healthy (based solely on your own emotional reaction, of course).

      You’re trying to walk a tight-rope between being a prude and not admitting you’re a prude, and I’m afraid it’s not working.

  12. SC says:

    I think we can agree that it’s probably not a very respectable sort of person. BUT YOU WATCH IT BECAUSE IT’S HEALTHY….let me ask you a question in return: what do you think she’d be like if there were no porn? Do you think she would suddenly become a nun? Or Suzie Homemaker? I think we all know she would still be having sex with random men; YOU ARE A FUCKEN PIG, HOW DO YOU KNOW WHAT LIFE THIS POOR SLUT HAS LIVED HOW MANY MEN HAVE RAN UP INSIDE HER AS A CHILD OR HOW HER PARENTS TREATED HER……she would just be meeting them in bars instead of a porno movie set. These womens’ lives would not improve if porn did not exist, and the well-paid superstars (like Hillary Scott, who signed a million-dollar contract) would be much worse off than they are now.

    Okay MIKE I had to make sure I was making a correct assumption when I came to the conclusion that you indeed are a geek lol and you should absolutely stay married to your wife from Utah…you are ridiculous …..I read all your arguments and I honestly don’t know how she puts up with you …she’s retarded too, this is all i can assume and you two procreated. This is horrible. I’m being mean but my Gosh, not GOD…..you have no regard for anyone but yourself …you sound self righteous way beyond any Bible Thumper and a hypocrite beyond belief….I wouldn’t have my daughter do it….but I wouldn’t want her to be a soldier either…..I stumble on to your blogcrap by accident lol because I saw a fricken table on the internet that had a naked female mannequin in bondage bent over on all four on a rug with a glass table top on her back like a slavewhore…I’m sure that image wasn’t created from watching spongebob….it disgusted me …but for the first instance I thought of sex…..it was implied that is where my mind went…..so I googled ” why do men degrade and objectify women” and loooow and behold, I found you….

    • Michael Wong says:

      There is high comedy factor in watching you tell me that I sound “self righteous” in the midst of that long rambling storm of moral condemnation (in which you never address any of my arguments about how anti-porn people are the real sexists …. other than to prove my point by acting like a complete jackass and calling my wife “retarded”).

      You’re a moron and like any true moron, you suffer from the crushing disability that you aren’t intelligent enough to realize you’re a moron.

  13. Michael Wong says:

    Oh hey, look what we have here:

    http://vitals.nbcnews.com/_news/2012/11/27/15490375-damaged-goods-nope-porn-stars-have-higher-self-esteem-than-other-women?lite=obinsite

    It turns out that according to a study published Nov 20 in the Journal of Sex Research and led by James D. Griffith of Shippensburg University in Pennsylvania, female porn stars were no more likely to have experienced childhood sex abuse than anyone else, nor are they likely to suffer from low self-esteem. So much for that popular myth.

    They’re more likely to engage in risky lifestyle activities (that is not a surprise), but the popular stereotype of tragic victims of exploitative bullies is quite simply nonsense.

  14. BriBrit says:

    Hi Mike
    Man you have a nerve sticking your neck out like this. Its a wonder its not been chopped off by now! I have just recommended to one of your commenters a good read on this entire subject. I think you will enjoy it whether or not you are a Christian because after all much of political correctness in today’s society has its source in Christianity anyway. Let me know if you do read it what your reaction is.

    Divine Sex Liberating Sex from Religious Tradition
    Philo Thelos

  15. BriBrit says:

    Hi again Mike
    I failed to mention that the book is available free online. If you cannot find it let me know your email and I will send you a Word copy.

  16. gareth says:

    If nothing else Mike, one has to admire your complete honesty; very few people would have the balls to speak so candidly about something so controversial

  17. gareth says:

    to SC, in case you ever come back to this blog; you need to learn that it is impossible to hold an intelligent discussion with someone who lets their emotions run away with them. Calling someone a pig etc just makes you look dumb.

  18. Eric B. says:

    In the interest of respect for all people, no matter what place they hold in society, please remove the following statement from your argument:

    “I think we can agree that it’s probably not a very respectable sort of person.”

    I respect all sex workers and believe they are worthy of that respect. If you believe their profession makes them dis-respectable, then you agree with anti-porn arguments that state that porn de-humanizes its subjects. All people are respectable, no matter what they have done or continue to do.

    • Michael Wong says:

      I would like to agree with you, and I’m not passing moral judgement on them. However, knowing the scorn with which porn performers are held in this society, and the fact that they could suffer personal and professional repercussions for years, I still have to conclude that there is a pretty strong chance that porn performers are disproportionately drawn from the ranks of those who don’t look too far into the future when they make decisions.

  19. Miklos says:

    Hi Mike,
    This stuff is interesting and great! I somehow don’t like porn (although I watch it.usually..), especially don’t like to share it with my partner, and I try to find good arguments to justify my instinctive convictions. Your argument
    smashes many anti-porn arguments, and you have done a good job. Religious arguments are – of course – nonsense, the arguments of feminists also are weak,
    and the argument that pornography encourages, or imprints in men the male-cauvinistic, sexist behaviour or attitude empirically unverified. Scientific researchs show that porn does not breed or encourages, or motivates anything, which does not belong originally into the psyche of the watchers.
    However, I think, that most of pornography shows sex without any emotion, without any love. And I think that sex is something, which – in any normal case – should involve some emotion, at least some sympathy, friendship. Sex without any emotion are a sad thing, degrading for men and women alike. So I think, that pornography propagates and encourages something wrong: pure sexual desire without any emotion.

    • Michael Wong says:

      Well, pornography generally shows “one night stands”, and while I have never done a “one night stand” and never plan to, I don’t know why one would say that it is necessarily “degrading for men and women alike”. Many people have done that, and I don’t know if they think they “degraded” themselves.

  20. Miklos says:

    Hi Mike,
    Most of porno doesn’t show “one-night-stand”, because one night stand may be (and should be) an emotionally warm, kind experience, accompanied by human feelings (although not very deep ones…). Most of porno shows sexual acts without any (even shallow) emotion, simpathy, kindness…Most of porno shows rude, dehumanized, brute sexuality…(and this is unavoidable, because putting the sex scenes in some human context – even in the context of a story on the level of bestsellers or comedy) would require not porn actors but real actors – and that would mean excessive costs. And while I don’t feel (nor I think that any of us should feel) degrading or dehumanizing an “one night stand”, an easy, not serious adventure, I feel degrading sex acts without any trace of sympathy or kindness (for example a visit at an unknown prostitute…).

  21. Melena says:

    Hi.

    I want to express my sympathy and respect, first and foremost. It is a shame you can’t talk about agreeing with porn without others thinking you agree with dehumanizing. And I respect and appreciate greatly your consideration for the problems people may have with this. I noticed you were especially kind in regards to women’s insecurities (in comparison to other anti porn reasons) despite them being illogical.

    I think this may be a long comment, I apologize on advance.

    At present I’ve been researching the morality of porn for a few hours, in an honest attempt to face my own insecurities. I feel like porn is objectifying a person, reducing them to a sex toy, literally. But I’m trying to consider that I’m wrong, not that the whole world is wrong. It’s just how I feel. I SEE the arguments, and the logical part of my brain agrees with them. I just texted my (very supportive) boyfriend saying, I read books about adventure, not because I’m not satisfied with our life, why do I feel different about porn? And truthfully, I cried when I originally read your point about people being misogynistic before watching misogynistic porn. I don’t really know why. But it was comforting. Still, something about it hurts.

    I suspect it has to do with more deeply rooted insecurities. To be very honest, I was raped at a young age. I’ve only confronted and begun to deal with it in this last year, with the help of the aforementioned supportive boyfriend. I’m not trying to ask for counseling here, just debate. I wanna know, do I feel this way because of what happened to me; would I think the same if I were totally healed from it? Or is it really objectifying and wrong?

    Anyway here’s my thinking. Of all the websites I read on, they focused on how porn “made MEN objectify women,” and I found myself asking, why isn’t anyone talking about how the women are objectifying THEMSELVES? Scratch women, people. Like you said, men are treated the same. Anyway, I realize that whether or not it’s wrong, it’s still going to happen and by all means more power to the people who would otherwise be poor sluts. But shouldn’t we as a people promote the idea that it’s wrong to treat someone that way? How are we going to teach the people we love not to hurt and rape if we allow it? I mean, not just porn, but ALL things which disrespect human rights should be spoken out against.

    I mean, if you wanted to use a sex toy, that’s great, but a person’s image belongs to them. Does their consenting to it make it ok? I mean, if I consent to someone cutting me, it’s still a violation of human rights.

    I don’t know. I think I’m losing my point. If the whole world thought something and I disagree, obviously I’m wrong. Perhaps I’m attacking porn because I’m unable to attack my rapist. Perhaps everyone is just different, and some people can enjoy it and some can’t. I just want to have open mindedly considered everything.
    So I guess my main question is, how can it not be considered objectification? How can one participate, while respecting the people on the tv?

    By the way, your wife is not retarded. She is very lucky to have someone who cares so much about her every feeling.

  22. Daniel says:

    Hi,
    I’d like to command when you said you and your wife love watching porn.My question is this, do you have this vivid memories when you see sexy looking woman? You have to be honest with yourself.Imaging if porn is legalised in all the countries, what would peoples’ behavior be like. Advertisement on cafe, supermarket, public crossing to just arouse the person’s desire.Imaging you kids talking about porno instead of homework. I strongly disagree you because there are so many unanswered questions that you cannot find the solutions? In biblical perspective, I Corinthian 7: 2-3, stated that because of the immorality, both spouse must love each other and have respect. In other words, God designed sex to be Holy and secret.

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