“Pornography debate will be a healthy change”

from www.advancetitan.com -Not everybody has to like porn. Not everybody ever will, and that’s just fine. Disagreement is the very purpose that this debate between Ron Jeremy and Craig Gross is set up to address the role of pornography in our contemporary culture.

There is no question that the pornography industry is profitable. According to one trade publication found in an ABC news story, “the business of porn earns about $14 billion a year, employs more than 100,000 people and is one of the most popular destinations for Web surfers.”

The xxxchurch postion is, “The Porn Pastors believe porn is dangerous for society — delusional for men and disrespectful to women. They say the fantasy of porn inhibits people from building and sustaining meaningful relationships.”

Jeremy has made his name in the adult film and magazine industry, and was described by one news source as the “elder statesman” of the porn industry.

Gross is a pastor, and co-founder of an online site that caters to those looking to get out of the porn industry or those attempting to rid themselves of their self-described “porn addiction.”

So with the battlelines drawn, we need to ask ourselves, what is the role of pornography?

What does it do to us and our social relationships? Porn unmasks our humanity through our carnality, our naked animal urges. Understandably, people become uncomfortable with this idea.

Additionally, pornography is a natural outgrowth of a society where sex in the religious perspective is demonized as sinful, and contrarily where it is so ingrained in every program and advertisement on television that it becomes just another commodity to sell -just another fantasy.

Most people have a natural revulsion to sex being used for a profit. It represents another way that an act of intimacy gets alienated from those who make it. For the debate, it raises the question about whether adult film actors volunteering their intimacy for others can effectively separate real love from sex.

When the debate gets cast as: “Jeremy argues that pornography is a profitable business, while Gross is a pastor who argues the moral issues of pornography,” the two sides aren’t really arguing about the same thing. Americans have long had a mental disconnect between what is moral and what is profitable. The religious element of the debate should prove to be the most interesting.

Jeremy was asked, “Is your life fulfilling?” in a past debate. That was the moment where the debate opened up another door to questioning the meaning of his existence, of his work. The question of meaning underlies the whole debate about pornography, and stands as the greatest task for Gross as a Christian to contend with, not whether “porn is fantasy.”

On another level, porn challenges the very notion of a religion that discourages sexuality. It asks why believers daily think about their savior getting tortured and crucified, rather than him having sex or jerking off –of living rather than sacrifice.

Pornography ultimately makes us confront the question of whether we are really something more than the meat bags gyrating and excreting things on the screen, and the answer isn’t clear no matter how much we want to say otherwise.

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