Anti-Porn Leaders Lie to U.S. Attorney General

A whole lot of Conservative bigshots wrote a letter last week to Attorney General Eric Holder.

They lied and lied and lied about pornography, then asked to meet with Holder as soon as possible so they could tell him how to rewrite Justice Department policies in response to these lies.

Here are some of their specific lies:
* “Pornography addiction is now common among men, women, and even many children.”
Even among therapists who believe in “pornography addiction,” virtually no one believes that it is common among women or children.

* “Hotels, cable TV, and satellite companies are making tremendous profits by offering illegal, obscene pornography.”
Adult pornography is legal in the U.S. unless a jury judges it obscene. There is nothing in American hotels or on the air that a jury has ruled illegal.

* “Since the advent of the internet, illegal pornography has flooded…schools.”
Commercial use of the internet began 20 years ago. No one alleged ANY internet pornography in schools until a year ago, when sexting began. Kids taking and emailing pics of themselves is not what most people think of as “pornography,” and it’s hardly “flooding” our schools—less than 1% of American schools have documented a single incident.

* “The results have been devastating to America.”
Since the explosion of internet pornography in 2001, the rates of divorce, child molestation, suicide, and sexual assault in the U.S. have gone down.

So when do pornography producers and consumers get OUR meeting with the Attorney General? When do we get to tell Holder that:
* We don’t want him to prosecute producers or consumers of adult pornography;
* Most people use this product safely;
* We recall plenty of social problems (including rape, incest, divorce, and suicide) in America before the internet, cable TV, and hotel room pornography;
* Sexting doesn’t really damage anyone—unless they’re arrested and punished.

Unfortunately, America’s cult of secrecy around sexuality undermines the democratic process around sexual issues. Most people who use porn (or strip clubs or tranny bars) aren’t willing to publicly go to bat for them—and so public policy is left in the hands of people who hate, fear, or misunderstand sex and sexual behavior.

Further, reasonable people who simply dislike porn rarely understand the importance to them of keeping it legal. They don’t appreciate that the laws that keep porn available also make Comedy Central, intense video games, vibrator stores, and “Desperate Housewives” legal.

One searches the Alliance Defense Fund letter’s 300+ signers in vain for psychologists, sociologists, or sexologists. The signatories are primarily self-described “morality leaders,” “reformed sex addicts,” “religious leaders,” and “family advocates,” joined by 100 lawyers.

Everyone knows that pornography is big business—and so is fighting pornography. Keeping that fight going is worth hundreds of millions of dollars to the individuals who signed the ADF letter and the corporations they run.

It’s hard to get someone to be reasonable—or democratic—when their income depends on them being unreasonable and undemocratic.

Attorney General Holder, if you’re going to meet with these anti-porn, lying, totalitarian-minded citizens, perhaps you’d also consider meeting with a few of the 50,000,000 people who look at porn every month, as well as a few actual experts in the fields of sexuality and social science. We’re ready to meet with you any time, any place, to discuss the sexual behavior of actual Americans—and how that fits in with American policies of law and justice.

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