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The poison of porn must be stopped. Here’s how

We have to band together to fight pornography before it ruins our culture.
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By LifeSiteNews staff

By LifeSiteNews staff

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January 15, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) – Terry Schilling has been fighting to ban or restrict porn to protect the family, but he's being met with quite a bit of resistance from other conservatives.

Schilling is the Executive Director of the American Principles Project (APP), an organization dedicated to supporting family values and their expression in politics. APP has been at the center of the debate on an important pro-family issue: pornography. This debate has surprisingly divided even the conservative movement. Libertarians oppose government regulation and intervention. Other conservatives want to ban pornography completely. Still another faction wants to only add an age verification requirement.

In today’s episode of The Van Maren Show, Jonathon Van Maren and Terry Schilling delve into the debate surrounding governmental regulations on pornography, today’s pornography-related laws, and what Schilling proposes we do to protect our children and our culture.

The average age at which children today are exposed to pornography is just 11.

The reason? Pornography creators and websites target children, advertising in places children are likely to frequent. The porn industry needs kids to become engaged and eventually addicted in order to stay in business. Currently, the only hurdle a child must overcome to access the content is to check a box saying he or she is at least 18.

This wasn't always the case. In 1996, the Communications Decency Act (CDA) was passed. It was designed to restrict children's access to pornography on the internet, similar to the Federal Communications Commissino (FCC) indecency regulations followed by TV and radio.

In 1997, in Reno v. American Civil Liberties Union, the Supreme Court ruled that the age verification requirements imposed by the anti-indecency provisions of the CDA were too much of a burden to pornography users. Since then, access to pornography has been largely unrestricted.

The court argued that the Internet was not as easily accessible as radio and television and therefore was not required to follow the same standards that prevented the transmission of obscenity across airwaves. 

Schilling points out that despite this ruling, as the Internet grows, other statutes on the books that restrict the transmission of obscenity across airwaves basically apply to pornography, but they just aren’t being enforced.  

One argument for not enforcing these statutes is that pornography is free speech and is therefore protected by the First Amendment. Schilling and Van Maren agree porn is truly just obscenity, not art or free speech. And its impacts can last a lifetime.

Van Maren highlights a recent email he received that is sadly all too common. He was contacted by a 12th grader who shared that he saw porn for the first time when he was in sixth grade. He had seen a "gangbang" before he had held a girl’s hand. He couldn’t even talk to a girl without photos of naked women flashing in his head. His story is heartbreaking and not unique. Most people who oppose banning or restricting pornography don’t realize just how badly pornography exposure affects children.

Schilling proposes a balanced solution that can gain partisan support and stand up to court challenges. He recommends implementing a solution with which Great Britain has experimented: allow people to order their Internet with or without access to adult content. 

Schilling explains it would be similar to cable packages in that users can order regular (filtered) Internet or unrestricted (unfiltered) Internet. Another option Schilling proposes is a true age verification – more than just checking a box verifying that a user is over 18. 

Many who disagree with Schilling say parents need to just be parents and teach their kids about the dangers of porn, and that the government doesn't need to be involved. Schilling argues that parents don’t have to take on big tobacco companies alone, but have the government’s help through laws restricting the sale of cigarettes to minors.  

Van Maren posits that people don’t truly understand the poisonous nature of porn and the effect it has on brain development when they argue the government shouldn’t be involved. Schilling and Van Maren note that when many think of porn, the pages of Playboy come to mind. But porn today has evolved into something far more violent and graphic.

Listen to the full interview here:

Although there has been debate recently surrounding the banning or restricting of pornography, Schilling cites a Gallup poll showing that only nine percent of Americans oppose a ban on porn. Around 50 to 60 percent of people support restricting pornography to people over 18. And another 30 percent support banning pornography altogether. So, despite the debate, Americans resoundingly support restrictions on pornography in some way. 

Schilling outlines his strategy for forming a broad coalition uniting both Democrats and Republicans. The focus would be on banning revenge pornography, "deepfake" pornography (imposing someone’s face onto pornography actors), and adding an age verification to pornography sites.  

Both Schilling and Van Maren see this as only the beginning of the fight. At American Principles Project, Schilling’s goal is to unite families and engage families around political issues impacting them.

With this activation of the family, Schilling sees the debate on pornography as one that can easily be won.

Readers can learn more about American Principles Project here

The Van Maren Show is hosted on numerous platforms, including Spotify, SoundCloud, YouTube, iTunes, and Google Play.

For a full listing of episodes, and to subscribe to various channels, visit our Pippa webpage here.

To receive weekly emails when a new episode is uploaded, click here.


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