On a cold, dark night, there’s nothing better than a blazing fire in the fireplace. You can pile on the wood and let it burn nice and warm. It’s safe, warm, relaxing, and romantic.

Now take that same fire out of the fireplace (which was built for it) and drop it in the middle of the living room. Suddenly it becomes destructive. It can burn down the whole house and kill everyone inside.

Sex is like that fire. As long as it’s expressed in the protective commitment of a marriage relationship, it’s wonderful, warm, and romantic. But porn takes sex outside that context.

A Big Business

Porn is a big business that makes a lot of money and doesn’t care how. Porn will show you whatever they think will make you come back and buy more. That is why it is addictive. It feeds on your desire to feel good.

Porn’s Image of Sex

One of the most vital parts of our mental environment is a healthy idea of who we are sexually. If these ideas are polluted, a critical part of who we are becomes twisted.

The porn culture tells you that sex, love, and intimacy are all the same thing. In porn, people have sex with total strangers — people they just met. Porn communicates the attitude of, “All that matters is my satisfaction. It doesn’t matter whose body I’m using, as long as I get it.” Porn communicates the message that sex is something you can have anytime, anywhere, with anyone, with no consequences.

What Sex is Really About

Porn’s outlook is obtuse and shallow. Relationships are not built on sex, but on commitment, caring, and mutual trust. In that context, like fire in the fireplace, sex is wonderful. What makes sex really great is being with someone who loves and accepts you, someone who is committed to you for your whole lives together, someone you can give yourself completely to.

The Lies of Porn

You can’t learn the truth about sex from pornography. It doesn’t deal in truth. Pornography is not made to educate, but to sell. Therefore, pornography will tell whatever it wants and needs to attract and hold the audience. Porn thrives on lies — lies about sex, women, marriage, and a lot of other things.

A closer look at these lies can shed light on the negative messages communicated and how they are influencing and degrading the lives and attitudes of those consuming pornography.

Lie #1 – Women are less than human.

The women in Playboy magazine are called “bunnies,” making them cute little animals, or “playmates,” making them a toy. Penthouse magazine calls them “pets.” Porn often refers to women as animals, playthings, or body parts. Some pornography shows only the body or the genitals and doesn’t show the face at all. The idea that women are real human beings with thoughts and emotions is played down.

Lie #2 – Women are a “sport.”

Some sports magazines have a “swimsuit” issue. This suggests that women are just some kind of sport. Porn views sex as a game — and in a game, you have to “win,” “conquer,” or “score.” Men who buy into this view like to talk about “scoring” with women. They start judging their manhood by how many “conquests” they can make. This encourages men to adopt the attitude, “Each woman I ‘score’ with is another trophy on my shelf, another ‘notch’ in my belt to validate my masculinity.”

Lie #3 – Women are property.

We’ve all seen the pictures of the slick car with the sexy girl draped over it. The unspoken message, “Buy one, and you get them both.” Hard-core porn carries this even further. It displays women like merchandise in a catalog, exposing them as openly as possible for the customer to look at. It’s not surprising that many young men think that if they have spent some money taking a girl out, they have a right to have sex with her. Porn tells us that women can be bought.

Lie #4 – A woman’s value depends on the attractiveness of her body.

Less attractive women are ridiculed in porn. They are called dogs, whales, pigs, or worse, simply because they don’t fit into porn’s criteria of the “perfect” woman. Porn doesn’t care about a woman’s mind or personality, only her body.

Lie #5 – Women like rape.

“When she says no, she means yes” is a typical porn scenario. Women are shown being raped, fighting and kicking at first, and then starting to like it. Porn teaches its consumers that enjoying, hurting, and abusing women for entertainment is acceptable.

Lie #6 – Women should be degraded.

Porn is often full of hate speech against women. Women are shown being tortured and humiliated in hundreds of sick ways and begging for more. Does this kind of treatment show any respect for women? Any love? Or is it hatred and contempt that porn is promoting toward women?

Lie #7 – Little kids should have sex.

One of the biggest sellers in pornography is imitation “child” porn. The women are “made-up” to look like little girls by wearing ponytails, little girl shoes, holding a teddy bear. The message of the images and cartoons is that adults having sex with kids is OK. This sets the porn user up to see children in a sexual way.

Lie #8 – Illegal sex is fun.

Porn often has illegal or dangerous elements thrown in to make sex more “interesting.” It suggests that you can’t enjoy sex if it isn’t weird, illegal, or dangerous.

Lie #9 – Prostitution is glamorous.

Porn paints an exciting picture of prostitution. In reality, many of the women portrayed in pornographic material are runaway girls trapped in a life of slavery, many having been sexually abused. Some of them are infected with incurable sexually transmitted diseases that are highly contagious and often die very young. Many take drugs just to cope.

Bottom line: pornography makes a profit from the ruined lives of young women and entraps men who will spend much time and money succumbing to their product.

Photo Credit: Ian Espinosa