Pornography, human trafficking, abortion, sexually-transmitted disease, and prostitution are polluted streams pouring into the cesspool of human pain. They are mutually reinforcing evils, each widened and deepened by the others.
As a 2012 report by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services noted, the intersection of these distinct but related outrages is extensive:
Victims of trafficking are forced into various forms of commercial sexual exploitation including prostitution, pornography, stripping, live-sex shows, mail-order brides, military prostitution and sex tourism. Victims trafficked into prostitution and pornography are usually involved in the most exploitive forms of commercial sex operations.
The report also noted that physical and emotional devastation of this witch’s brew of depravity is long and grim:
Victims face numerous health risks. Physical risks include drug and alcohol addiction; physical injuries (broken bones, concussions, burns, vaginal/anal tearings); traumatic brain injury (TBI) resulting in memory loss, dizziness, headaches, numbness; sexually transmitted diseases (e.g., HIV/AIDS, gonorrhea, syphilis, UTIs, pubic lice); sterility, miscarriages, menstrual problems; other diseases (e.g., TB, hepatitis, malaria, pneumonia); and forced or coerced abortions.
What can concerned Christians do? There are some wonderful ministries with which to connect and through which to take action (for example, Faith Alliance Against Slavery and Trafficking and Pink Elephant Resources). And next week, the Porn Harms Coalition (of which Family Research Council is a member) is holding its annual White Ribbon Against Pornography (WRAP) initiative:
The National White Ribbon Against Pornography (WRAP) Week brings together hundreds of national, state and local groups, along with driven concerned citizens in a massive effort to educate the public on the harms from pornography and the many resources available to aid those affected.
An online presentation by Anna Malika by be launched Monday, Oct. 27 called, “What’s Porn Got To Do With Sex Trafficking? A Survivor Explains." Although Anna was adopted from Kolkata, India by an American family and raised in North Carolina, “throughout her life, she faced extreme sexual and physical abuse, eating issues and severe abandonment. She is also a survivor of sex trafficking."
Transformed through the power of the Gospel, Anna’s compelling story will challenge you to be aware of the horrible, growing, and intersecting relationship between the pornography, sexual slavery, abortion and related activities. WRAP’s many other activities next week are also well worth your investment of time and engagement.
“The porn problem is not contained to adolescent boys and their computers in mom and dad's basement,” writes Dave Dunham, a pastor in Michigan. “It has spread, like a rapacious plague, across our culture and even into the church. Porn controls much sexual expression and sexual discussion in our culture."
He’s right, but remember that this plague affects not just the millions of people who participate in it anonymously but the thousands of men and women, boys and girls whose degradation is the source of the perverse pleasure generated by pornography itself. Let’s stand up for them next week as we continue to battle pornography and its hydra of evils.
Here are more resources to help you fight pornography and learn why it is such a destructive force in both society and the church:
Rob Schwarzwalder is the Senior Vice-President of the Family Research Council.
Publication date: October 27, 2014