CHAPTER 135 — DEFENDERS OF PORNOGRAPHY
American Life League
To say that one may avoid further offense by turning off the radio when he hears indecent language is like saying that the remedy for an assault is to run away after the first blow.
Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens.
People who watch hard-core sex films may be wasting their lives, damaging their morals, or ruining their personal relationships. They are not doing any harm to innocent people, which is more than can be said for the government's crusaders against pornography.
Syndicated columnist Stephen Chapman.
What the right wing calls 'pornography' is merely constitutionally-protected sexually explicit material. Anyone who tries to interfere with the production, distribution, or consumption of this type of artwork is a censor who is against personal freedom, plain and simple.
One of the most ridiculous claims made by these censors is that there is any connection whatever between explicit material and violence of any kind.
This is why such pro-libertarian organizations like the American Civil Liberties Union, Americans for Constitutional Freedom, and People for the American Way defend the right of anyone to distribute and read sexually explicit material.
The Porn Profiteers.
It is not at all surprising that those who disavow the connection between porn and violence are usually those who grow rich by it. The porn pushers as a class simply ignore or discount the pervasive evidence showing the many connections between their "product" and the ills of society.
This is precisely the same mindset that afflicts homosexuals and abortionists: A purposeful and deliberate rejection of any hard evidence that damages their position and an embracing of a nebulous philosophy that states "The issue is not (pick one: abortion, homosexuality, pornography): it is freedom!"
Indeed, pornography can only exist under the protection of the umbrella of 'free speech.' It is not art, nor is it a unique form of communication, nor is it a specialized type of literature. It is, quite simply, degradation in print and picture.
The Degraded Have Little Voice.
And who is degraded? As always, obviously, it is those least able to defend themselves women and children are the victims, used primarily for the sexual satisfaction of men. Only if the porn kings can continue to convince the public that censorship of the things we hate will eventually lead to censorship of the things we cherish will they be able to continue their 'filthy rich' business.
It is therefore not surprising that their most effective ploy has been to muddy the waters by wrapping themselves in the American flag and posturing as champions of free speech and freedom of artistic expression.
However, even as they declare that any form of expression is protected speech, the porn kings ruthlessly pillory and censor those who use the same free speech rights to speak out against them.
The Porn King's Version Of Reality.
Denying the Connections.
There is a crushing mountain of evidence that clearly connects pornography to sexual abuse, rape, murder, and other violence. The porn kings and their supporters know this, in the same manner that abortion supporters know that abortion kills babies. However, the abortionists and pornographers defend their 'industries' like cornered rats, because to admit the truth would be to admit their own guilt and culpability.
For example, in the Summer 1989 issue of the Free Inquiry, a periodical published by the Council for Democratic and Secular Humanism (CUDASH), Vern L. Bullough insists that "Sexual abuse of children is declining" and that it really isn't the problem that "right wing, Bible-beating fanatics" say it is.
Bullough bases his conclusions on "all the indices we can establish." Of course, he didn't mentioned what indices he was talking about in his paper, which did not have a single footnote or reference! Obviously, research is likely to be of this "quality" when one has a heavy vested interest in the topic one is "researching." The same principle holds true for abortionists and cigarette manufacturers.
Chapter 41 of Volume II, "The Child Abuse Connection to Abortion," shows that the incidence of child abuse and child murder in this country has increased by more than 400 percent since 1970.
The pornographers offer other laughable 'research' to 'support' their views. Dr. O. Elthammer of the Stockholm Child Psychiatric Department showed children as young as eleven movies of a woman being gang-raped by drunks and then by their dogs. He then reported that he had "proved conclusively" that pornography "does not have a corrupting effect," and that "None of the children was frightened during or after the film, but a proportion of the older girls did admit to being shocked."
'Pornography Reduces Rape.'
Another porn pusher with utter contempt for unfavorable evidence is Al Goldstein, the ultrarich publisher of Screw Magazine. In a February 15, 1989 nationally-syndicated column, he baldly asserted that "Non-violent pornography can help reduce the rate of rape." Goldstein also stated as fact that sex crimes decreased in Denmark when pornography was legalized there in 1967.
Not surprisingly, Goldstein's statements were quickly proven to be outright, barefaced lies. The 1977 Statistical Yearbook of Denmark showed that, ten years after pornography was legalized in Denmark, forcible rape had increased 300 percent, venereal disease more than 300 percent, and illegitimate births more than 200 percent during the previous decade.
The Scandinavian "Sex Paradise."
The porn pushers frequently cite the example of their treasured Scandinavian "sex paradise." They not only perpetuate this myth in their magazines and movies, but falsify statistics from Scandinavian countries to support their untenable positions. If we were to believe Goldstein and his contemptible ilk, pornography was the best thing ever to happen to Sweden and Denmark.
In Sweden, six million hardcore porn magazines are sold openly and legally every year. Since there is absolutely no limit on the type of material that may be sold, these 'skin mags' depict the full range of perversions, including sadism, rape, bondage, bestiality, and pedophilia.
What has this 'blessing' of porn done for Sweden?
Recently, the chairman of Sweden's ultraliberal Sex Ed Association admitted that; "We had hoped that liberalization [of pornography] would lead to the open and honest portrayal of all aspects of sexuality. Instead, the sex capitalists move in and what we got was pornography, which was cold, mechanical, violent and degrading."
So much for the salubrious effects of porn!
The Reaction to the Attorney General's Pornography Commissions.
The 1970 Commission.
The first Attorney General's Commission on Pornography, convened in 1970, reported that porn was a "cathartic," and that it posed no particular menace to society.
Naturally, the pornographers were ecstatic about this conclusion, and proceeded to flood the country with perversions that nobody had ever imagined. Neoliberals, of course, hailed this Commission as "prophetic," "courageous," and "forward-looking."
The 1986 Commission.
Perhaps nothing made Attorney General Edwin Meese more a pariah to the Left than the activities of his 1986 Commission on Pornography. This Commission report concluded that the 1970 Commission report was "starkly obsolete," thereby removing the smut peddler's 'moral' justification to do whatever they wanted.
The vehemence of the Neoliberal's reaction to the very existence of the Pornography Commission, as described below, demonstrates conclusively several points;
• The Neoliberals know that, if they can conceal their seamy and repulsive activities from the public, general apathy (and therefore general inaction) will continue. Therefore, they oppose open discussion of any topic which may result in setbacks to their causes;
• The Neoliberals like to wrap themselves in the sacred cloth of 'free speech' by whining that any attempt to curtail damaging Neoliberal activities is both unethical and un-American; and
• The Neoliberals are utterly close-minded about their 'pet' issues, including pornography.
Neoliberals Try to Suppress the Commission.
The Neoliberal uproar caused by the mere convening of the Commission and its lawful activities was positively comical in its vehemence and silliness.
Ultraliberal pro-abort actor Ed Asner told the Arkansas chapter of the ACLU that Attorney General Ed Meese was a "walking obscenity," and that "Invasions of privacy have been made to seem patriotic by Santa Ronnie [Reagan]."
At the Attorney General's Commission hearings in New York, Harvard law professor Alan Dershowitz testified on behalf of Penthouse Magazine by calling the Commission "One of the most un-American activities I have witnessed." He said that Commission members
... have allied themselves with some of the most repressive, un-American elements in society. This whole thing has been like the Soviet Union holding hearings on how the Bible causes perversion and violence ... You hold these hearings and invite every sort of sickie and born-again to come in and blame their problems on devil pornography.
In a February 1986 interview, Playboy king Hugh Hefner stated that
Largely because of the fundamentalist religion thing that is going on ... there is a very anti-sexual kind of position ... And the anti-porn movement that is now reflected in the federal government. You've got a sexual McCarthyism going on right now with statements from the Surgeon General and the Justice Department and this Mickey Mouse committee they're sending around the country.
Attorneys for Playboy, Playgirl, and Penthouse magazines, and the American Magazine Association even threatened the individual members of the Attorney General's Commission with a $30 million lawsuit for the heinous crime of (gasp!) "... putting them under pressure."
Don Wildmon, executive director of the American Family Association (then the National Federation for Decency) is the country's most experienced and effective porn fighter. Therefore, when he testified before the Commission, he was subjected to attacks as vicious as those leveled against the Attorney General.
Playboy and Penthouse magazines, the American Booksellers Association, and the Council for Periodical Distributors filed suit in Federal court against the Commission in an attempt to censor Wildmon's testimony. Curiously, the plaintiffs did not feel that it was necessary to censor the testimony of any of the other dozens of persons who spoke at length to the Commission they only went after Wildmon, whose testimony they considered most damaging to their own cause.
Arthur J. Kropp, president of People for the American Way, sneered that "Wildmon can find an anti-family conspiracy in a test pattern." Oren Teicher, director for 'Americans' for Constitutional Freedom, said that "What Wildmon is doing is no different than what the Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini did when he tried to suppress the sale of Salman Rushdie's Satanic Verses."
The ACLU on Parade.
The Porn King's Best Friend.
It was certainly no surprise to see the American Civil Liberties Union defend the pornographers against the Commission, because the ACLU has adopted as one of its official policies the legalization of all porn, including the reprehensible "kiddie porn" so prevalent today (see Chapter 37 of Volume II, "The American Civil Liberties Union," for a partial listing of the ACLU's goals).
However, even some ACLU supporters were dismayed at their organization's unoriginal and clumsy methods. The ACLU, of course, approves even of pornography that depicts small children having sex with animals. Its mistake in this particular case was in not sticking to its usual tactic of defending nebulous 'rights,' but instead coming right out and being specific.
Everyone knows that being specific is death to the Neoliberals.
I Don't Wanna Hear It ...
The ACLU's legislative counsel, Barry Lynn, was particularly close-minded in his testimony before the Commission and the press. He stated that a major national discussion that "... begins with the erroneous assumption that explicit sexual speech is a major national problem ... poses great, great dangers to the First Amendment." In other words, the ACLU doesn't even want the public to discuss the matter!
Lynn moaned that "Much of the hoopla seems designed to scare the producers and distributors of sexually explicit materials, which is the kind of chilling effect we were afraid of."
Lynn also boasted to ABC television that "What I deny is that no study now or ever will demonstrate that those people [sex abusers] are caused to be the kind of people they are because they look at pornography." In other words, Lynn says that the ACLU will never be convinced of anything that it doesn't want to be convinced of. It will never be moved from its position.
This is the very definition of a closed mind.
Liberals (and, in particular, the ACLU) laugh at the idea that porn has any influence on kids. Strangely, they simultaneously demand that no trace of religion appear in our textbooks, and that no teacher even dare to mention God for fear of "corrupting" school kids.
Apparently, the ACLU and its toadies believe that only religious material has any undesirable effects on people.
'The Government Has No Interest.'
Naturally, the ACLU believes that the government has no legitimate interest in restricting pornography at all, as was demonstrated when Pornography Commission Chairman Henry Hudson posed a question to the ACLU's Jane Whicher. Hudson asked her "If a young person on the way home from school encounters an adult, and the adult gives him a piece of literature that portrays sodomy and portrays bestiality with a child 12 years old, you don't think the government has any interest whatsoever in that transaction?"
And Whicher answered simply, "No, I don't."
Why the ACLU Defends Porn.
Even some Neoliberals were confused at the extreme reaction of the ACLU to the very existence of the AG's Porn Commission until it was revealed in testimony that the ACLU's Women's Project had received generous amounts of money for years from the Playboy Foundation.
For example, the inside back cover of the American Civil Liberties Union's Reproductive Freedom Project 1981 publication "Women's Guide to Reproductive Rights" proclaims "Printing donated by the Playboy Foundation."
This and other revelations irritated the ACLU beyond even the ability of its prolix vocabulary to express.
We should not be surprised by the strength of the ACLU-porn connection. The ACLU has declared that defending abortion is its "number one national priority." Pro-lifers know how abortion allows men to use women (or, more specifically, their sex organs, which abortion conveniently renders barren) for their own gratification. Porn allows men to use women as well.
Therefore, the ACLU is being entirely consistent in defending it.
The Abortion-Porn Connection.
Not only does porn enhance the ability of men to indirectly control and enslave women by degrading them, its producers directly contribute to this oppression by giving lots of money to abortion pushers.
Many pro-abortion groups are lavishly funded by pornographers. One example of this connection was the huge fundraiser held for the National Abortion Rights Action League (NARAL) at the Chicago Playboy Mansion on October 20, 1979, The dinner, disco dance and swim party was hosted by Christie Hefner, and was sponsored by 'Good Catholic' Phil Donohue.
The invitation stated that the Playboy Foundation was "supporting through grants and technical assistance" among others, the American Civil Liberties Union and the ACLU's Roger Baldwin Foundation; 'Catholics' for a Free Choice; the Center for Constitutional Rights; the Ms. Foundation Pro-Choice Project; the National Abortion Federation; the National Abortion Rights Action League; the amusingly-named Parent's Aid Center (headed by abortionist Bill Baird); the 'Religious' Coalition for Abortion Rights; and Voters for Choice.
Other groups that the Playboy Foundation has supported with tens of thousands of dollars include the National Organization for Women, the National Women's Political Caucus, the Women's Action Alliance, and EMILY's List (a political fundraising group that supports only pro-abortion women candidates).
It is also very interesting to note that most of the members of the pro-pornography group National Coalition Against Censorship (NCAC) are also members of the 'Religious' Coalition for Abortion Rights (RCAR).
Members of NCAC include the organizations listed below. Those groups listed with an asterisk (*) are also members of the 'Religious' Coalition for Abortion Rights. The Planned Parenthood Federation of America is, of course, the country's largest abortionist.
MEMBER ORGANIZATIONS OF THE NATIONAL COALITION AGAINST CENSORSHIP
United Methodist Church, United Methodist Communications *
National Council of the Churches of Christ *
American Ethical Union *
Unitarian Universalist Association *
American Jewish Congress *
American Jewish Committee
National Council of Jewish Women
Union of American Hebrew Congregations *
American Civil Liberties Union
People for the American Way
Planned Parenthood Federation of America
National Education Association
American Library Association
Note: Those groups that are marked with an asterisk (*) are also member organizations of the 'Religious' Coalition for Abortion Rights (RCAR).
The "Mainline" Media's Reaction.
As predicted, the mainline media savagely assailed the results of the Attorney General's Commission on Pornography, because it perceives that any limitation on the distribution of printed or visual material poses a direct threat to its virtually unlimited freedom.
For example, Newsweek magazine, in its March 18, 1985 issue, decisively took the side of the pornographers. In a long cover story entitled "The War Against Pornography," the writers denounced anti-porn "crusaders" as "a threat to the First Amendment." In direct contradiction to the results of its own polls that showed only 16 percent of Americans favor no restrictions on porn, the writers said that "clear majorities" favor the sale of X-rated movies and magazines.
It is really not at all surprising that those who exploit and use people for a living should feel free to lie to them as well.
The Neofeminist Position.
The current crop of Neofeminists generally condemn pornography only if it contains an unacceptable level of violence or coercion directed towards women. They do not particularly care if small boys are molested. It is amusing (in a perverse way) that the Neofeminist movement helped to usher in pornography and now roundly condemns entire categories of porn because they lead to the widespread exploitation of women.
No one with common sense believes that a society can embrace abortion, sodomy, institutionalized child molestation, bestiality, and other physical evils without the accompanying graphic description of these evils in print and picture. All societies are given just two alternatives in this real-life moral and ethical multiple-choice examination: All of the above, or none of the above. No other alternatives are given or are even possible.
The Pornographers Ridicule Christianity.
The Bible = Pornography.
Since their only real opposition comes from church-based groups, the pornographers relentlessly and viciously attack the Church and its moral stands. The standards set forth in the Bible are anathema to them, and so they have performed an absolutely breathtaking moral inversion by labeling the Bible "pornographic."
When Sol Gordon, veteran Planned Parenthood masturbation pusher, received the "coveted" Raymond E. Bragg Award for Scholarly Contribution and Personal Commitment to Humanism in 1985, he said that "The Bible is one of the most masochistic, pornographic things we have ... If I was to talk about the real threat to women [other than pornography], I would talk about some of the influences in the Bible ... Those are some of the much more serious threats than pornography."
At the same awards ceremony and panel, Gina Allen, former director of the American Humanist Association, said that
Actually, I take them [Bibles] out of hotels because I wouldn't want a child to get hold of this pornographic book. Pornography is a symptom of a sick society a society based on this book. Stories in the Bible are forerunners of the famous Hustler cover that shows a woman being put through a meat grinder. This is what we learn from this book that tells us how to rape, how to stone women and children, how to burn women as witches, and so on ... The Lord God invented women as a gadget a useful gadget for men's pleasure and use. You take this gadget and you screw it on the bed and it does the housework.
Not only is Allen a dismal Bible scholar, but her profound lack of self-esteem and loathing of her own gender shows through when she describes herself and all other women as "gadgets."
In its August 1987 Australian edition, Penthouse suggested that "ordinary people like you and me" have sex with animals and that "Maybe it's time the Old Testament was banned not only from the bedroom but from the barnyard as well." The following month, the magazine published a "how-to" guide on statutory rape entitled "How To Feel Sweet Sixteen Again." This 'Guide' suggested that pedophiles get jobs at all-girls schools, and described how to lure young girls to motel rooms and destroy their inhibitions with alcohol and drugs.
And so, we have arrived at the point where a teacher who reads out of a Bible will be fired by the school and prosecuted by the American Civil Liberties Union for violation of the First Amendment, while a teacher displaying pornography in the next classroom will be defended by the same organization under the same Amendment.
It has never been more obvious that those who fall away from Biblical morality dive directly into a cesspool of perversions that would make any self-respecting animal vomit. Incredibly, some of these pornographers, these people who have sex with underage children and animals, call themselves "good Christians."
This mindset is the ultimate example of how thoroughly some people can deceive themselves.
Pornographic Attacks On Christian Symbols.
One very effective tactic used by an organization that wants to stimulate social change is to indirectly attack an institution by ridiculing its symbols and connecting them to reprehensible practices.
Pornographers frequently depict Santa Claus, an indirect Christian symbol, as a cannibal, child molester, child killer, and as having sex with animals. A January 1979 Playboy magazine cartoon shows him having intercourse with one of his reindeers. A December 1977 Penthouse cartoon shows a snarling Santa, holding a smoking automatic rifle in his hands, standing over a sprawled dead child saturated with blood. Santa is saying "That'll teach you to be a good boy."
As always, the religious right and associated groups are mocked. Named or stereotyped clergymen and members of the Moral Majority are constantly depicted in bed with or molesting little girls and boys. The most famous recent example of such slander is Hustler's cartoon of Jerry Falwell having sex with his own mother in an outhouse.
The April 1987 Penthouse features a cartoon of the Last Supper. A huge cake is centered on the table, and a nude woman and three armed Roman soldiers are emerging from it. Jesus has a big smile on His face and His arm is around Judas. He says "Damn, Judas! You really know how to betray a guy!"
From Bad Assumptions to Outright Lies.
Some pro-pornography organizations and individuals, in their mad rush to discredit conservative and religious groups, unhesitatingly go far beyond stating unwarranted assumptions to outright, bare-faced lies.
For example, on October 24, 1990, Julianne Ross Davis, general counsel for the National Endowment for the Arts, attacked the American Family Association in an address to the University of Pennsylvania School of Law. She charged that
The American Family Association ... has a 24-point political agenda it would like to see attained by the year 2000. It includes the elimination of democracy, elimination of public schools, advocates that astrologers, adulterers, blasphemers, homosexuals, and incorrigible children be executed, preferably by stoning. That's one of our enemies. This is true.
When members of the public and of Congress objected to Davis' lies, NEA Chairman John Frohnmeyer vigorously defended her by stating under oath that Davis presented "... the views and position of the NEA. In fact, the statements that Ms. Davis made during the public presentation that the plaintiffs complain of were not only part of her official duties, but are also exactly the type of speech that she is employed to perform."
Ironically, Davis was a Federal government worker earning more than $77,000 annually. This is yet another example of public tax dollars being used to undermine conservative values.
These forthright Neoliberal lies have two purposes. The basic idea is to intimidate believers from taking useful action (1) by ridiculing any type of faith in God that might lead to Christian action against Neoliberalism, and (2) by slandering, stereotyping, and painting with a broad brush a very sizable population of believers as mentally unstable.
References: Defenders of Pornography.
 Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens, quoted in "Turn it Off?" American Family Association Journal, May 1989, page 9.
 Syndicated columnist Stephen Chapman. "Troops in U.S. War on Pornography Don't Always Care About Taking Prisoners." The Oregonian, October 8, 1991, page B7.
 "Humanist Publication Downplays Child Abuse." National Federation for Decency Journal, April 1985, page 4.
 "Newsweek Coverage Scores One for Pornographers." National Federation for Decency Journal, September 1985, page 12.
 News of Interest. "Asner Calls AG Meese 'Walking Obscenity.'" National Federation for Decency Journal, February 1987, page 12.
 "Harvard Law Professor Testifies for Pornographers." National Federation for Decency Journal, April 1986, page 20.
 "Hefner Speaks Unkindly About the Morals of Others." National Federation for Decency Journal, April 1986, pages 15 and 16.
 Interview with Jonathan Roberts, as reported in "Sweden's Attitude Toward Pornography is Changing." National Federation for Decency Journal, April 1986, page 5.
 Tom Shales. "Wildmon Denies He's Acting As Censor." The Oregonian, June 22, 1989, page D9.
 "ACLU Opposes Study on Pornography." National Federation for Decency Journal, April 1985, page 14.
 "Attorney General Makes Promise to Prosecute Obscenity 'With Vengeance.'" National Federation for Decency Journal, November/December 1986, page 1.
 "ACLU Defends Child Pornography." National Federation for Decency Journal, September 1986, page 9.
 "ACLU Wants Government to Ignore Child Porn." National Federation for Decency Journal, January 1986, page 12.
 "Media Fails to Give All the Facts Concerning ACLU." National Federation for Decency Journal, May/June 1986, page 8.
 Elizabeth Moore. "Playboy and National Abortion Rights Action League Host Fundraiser." ALL About Issues, November 1979, page 17.
 Doug LeBlanc. "Bunny Money: Playboy Foundation Underwrites the Sexual Revolution." World Magazine, January 9, 1993, pages 10 and 11.
 "United Methodist, Other Religious Groups Oppose Fight Against Pornography." American Family Association Journal, January 1990, page 4.
 "Humanists Say Bible is Pornographic: Gordon: Bible More Serious Threat Than Porn." National Federation for Decency Journal, September 1985, page 12.
 Don Feder. "Merchants of Porn Strike Back at Critic." American Family Association Journal, January 1989, page 19.
 This cartoon is reproduced on page 31 of the May/June 1987 issue of the National Federation for Decency Journal.
 "AFA Sues General Counsel." The Wanderer, December 6, 1990, page 2.
 "Federal Judge Restrains NEA's Top Lawyer on AFA Comments." American Family Association Journal, July 1991, page 10.
Further Reading: Defenders of Pornography.
Final Report of the Attorney General's Commission on Pornography.
Rutledge Hill Press, 513 Third Avenue South, Nashville, Tennessee 37210. 1986, 571 pages. This work is divided into five sections. These are entitled "Overview and Analysis of Commission Findings;" "Law Enforcement Recommendations;" "Pornography and Society," which includes victim testimony, the use of performers, porn's connections to organized crime, the regulation of porn, First Amendment considerations, and the production and distribution of porn; "The Commissioners," and "Reference Material."
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This is a chapter of the Pro-Life Activist’s Encyclopedia published by American Life League.