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Pornography Is Not True

Discussion in 'Ethics & Morality' started by Tree of Life, Jan 10, 2019.

  1. Tree of Life

    Tree of Life O Lord, do not treat me as I have treated others!

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    Years ago Craig Gross travelled around the country with Ron Jeremy debating the ethics of pornography. One of Craig's opening arguments about pornography being unethical is that "pornography isn't real." The people that are seen in videos don't really have relationships, intimacy, or romance. They are actors playing roles. It's fake.

    A pro-porn lady in the audience challenged this point in the Q&A time when she pointed out that we don't normally reject other things simply because they're not real. Lord of the Rings, for example, is not real and everyone knows it. Yet we still readily embrace the story and the films because it gives us something valuable.

    But the real problem with pornography is not that it's not real. The problem with pornography is that it's not true. Even though Lord of the Rings isn't real, we value it because it is true. That is, through the story it is telling us something true about the world, ourselves and others, what it means to be brave, etc.

    Pornography is the exact opposite of this. Not only is it fake, but it's also untrue. It's telling us lies about the nature of relationships, what sex does to people, what women want, what sex does to relationships, the power of sex in our lives, the importance of sex, etc. We could list off a great many lies that are at the core of pornography.

    Of course it's fake. Porn actors are actors and the stories aren't real. But it's greater problem is that it's not true. By engaging in pornography consumption, we are consuming lies about the world that affect the way we do life and relate to others and actually undermine our relationships and our attempts at real intimacy.

    Discuss.
     
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  2. Tree of Life

    Tree of Life O Lord, do not treat me as I have treated others!

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    Well if we're gonna get this thread featured you guys gotta say something. You can't just pat me on the back and peace out.
     
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  3. Tanj

    Tanj Redefined comfortable middle class

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    Can I remove some of those pats then?

    I find the argument shallow and unconvincing. There are plenty of movies and tv that are barely mindless entertainment and have 0 truth value.

    Just once it'd be great to see someone on this board open a thread about a sin that didn't involve some aspect of sex or its potential after effects.
     
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  4. ewq1938

    ewq1938 Chewbacca kree! Supporter

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    So are parables.

    Also, not all porn is actors acting. Some is very real like a couple making a sex tape.
     
  5. Paidiske

    Paidiske Clara bonam audax Staff Member Supervisor Supporter Recovery Team

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    In terms of lies about relationships and so on, I'm not sure that it's worse than your average rom-com. Or, if you want to keep the sexual edge to the argument, than most written erotica, which attracts less ire because it's words on a page rather than images on a screen.

    And I'm not even sure that indulging in fantasies which are not true is inherently a problem, provided that one is very clear about the line between fantasy and reality and doesn't allow them to blur (which is the problem you point to in your last paragraph).

    The untruths which concern me more are not so much about what's depicted on screen, as about the realities off screen. We know, on one level, that the industry is exploitative, destructive, that the young person making good money of their own free will to work their way through college to a brighter future is largely a myth. And yet that's the disbelief we (collectively, as a society) allow ourselves to suspend so that we can indulge in our preferred on-screen fantasy... and that's where real people's real lives are being impacted by our consumption habits.

    It's those untruths and the damaged lives left in their wake which concern me far more.
     
  6. Tree of Life

    Tree of Life O Lord, do not treat me as I have treated others!

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    I think you're talking here about unreality rather than untruth. Fantasy can unreal on the surface but deeply true underneath. Pornography is real on the surface but deeply untrue underneath.
     
  7. Tree of Life

    Tree of Life O Lord, do not treat me as I have treated others!

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    What about negative truth value? My claim about pornography isn't that it has 0 truth value, but that it's actually deeply lying to consumers and warping their relationship with reality.

    There are plenty.
     
  8. Tree of Life

    Tree of Life O Lord, do not treat me as I have treated others!

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    Parables are not real but they are deeply true. But a parable that's telling a deep lie is a pernicious thing.

    This porn is also untrue even though it is real.
     
  9. Johnny4ChristJesus

    Johnny4ChristJesus Well-Known Member Supporter

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    The thing that makes pornography bad is not that it is simply not true or not real; it is the damage that it does to people. Think about the lust created when someone looks at pictures or videos. Think about the amount of marriages that have been ruined because someone has a picture or video in mind that destroys their ability to have real intimacy with the one they are to be sharing life with or creates unreal expectations that their mate doesn't or can't live up to. How can you lust for something else and really love the one you have? Think about the demonic oppression that people experience--the stories they tell of addiction to it and the shame they feel--keeping them from their life purpose which certainly isn't to make love to a picture or movie. And, since someone is getting paid for it, it is a form of prostitution--they are selling their body for money.
     
  10. redleghunter

    redleghunter Abide Boldy my friend Supporter

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    Like what?
     
  11. disciple Clint

    disciple Clint Well-Known Member

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    The real problem with porn is not its truth or fiction. It is the lessons that it teaches. It encourages if not demands that people use others for their own needs without regard for the other person. It degrades and devalues human life and human relationships. It dishonors that sanctity of the person and it insults God who intends that sex is to build relationships and families. Little by little it works on our minds and changes our values, this makes it very dangerous for each of us because we do not recognize these changes until they have gone so far that they are affecting our own relationships and attitudes.
     
  12. ewq1938

    ewq1938 Chewbacca kree! Supporter

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    No, it is both real and true if they are a real couple.
     
  13. Sketcher

    Sketcher Born Imperishable

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    I'm going to poke a hole in this one.

    With tube sites especially, there is an increase of couples filming themselves and putting the material up. No actors, no scripts, no directors, just them and a camera or two. I don't think we can call that fake. At the same time, I don't think we can call consuming this kind of porn right.
     
  14. redleghunter

    redleghunter Abide Boldy my friend Supporter

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    That is more voyeurism.
    .
     
  15. quatona

    quatona "God"? What do you mean??

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    So you would have no problem with graphic documentaries about "true" sex?

    Btw., I think that even "fake" pornography can tell us something "true" about the world (the thing is, though, that you or I may not like this "truth").
     
  16. Nithavela

    Nithavela A bit facetious.

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    I agree. Maybe try gluttony or wrath, but porn has been beaten to death. So boring.
     
  17. Nithavela

    Nithavela A bit facetious.

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    I'm sorry, what? How does that disprove that those videos aren't porn.

    What else is porn if not canned voyeurism?
     
  18. RayJeena

    RayJeena Evolve, already! Supporter

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    You beat me to it. :)
     
  19. Belk

    Belk Senior Member

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    What lies do you believe porn to be telling? The only ones i can think of off the top of my head is the idea that women enjoy particular acts. Like most mediums of the sort, porn is missing nuance. Like everyone else there is a wide range of what particular people enjoy.
     
  20. essentialsaltes

    essentialsaltes Stranger in a Strange Land

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    If you think non-porn romantic films are telling us the truth, you're deluded.

    I also think advertising and religion would not compare well with porn on the truth-content.
     
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