June 15, 2021

"Articles on use of pornography by young people often point out how boys can come to believe that the abusive and misogynistic things that happen are normal and right..."

"... which might cause them to be too aggressive. But parents should not ignore the opposite effect on many girls, who see these videos and think 'if I act subservient and cool with whatever they want to do to my body, that will make me popular and boys will like me.' I'm not victim-blaming. I know of what I speak and I think it's an important part of the conversation."

That's the top-rated comment — by a lot — on the NYT article "If You Ignore Porn, You Aren’t Teaching Sex Ed" by Peggy Orenstein.


Ann Althouse said...

Assistant Village Idiot writes:

It does sound plausible that young people exposed to pornography will adopt its attitudes. I once believe it myself, when I was working with sex offenders in the 80s and 90s. But there isn't any evidence this actually happens. It seems like it should, but the continuing availability of pornography since the 1990s has not resulted in an explosion of sexual crime. On the contrary, sexual crime has steadily gone down.

A lecturer at a conference I attended was asked whether use of pornography influenced previous offenders to repeat their crimes. He shrugged. "Maybe. But I'd let one of my supervisees have a stack of Playboys before I let him have a beer. Substance use is the biggest spur, by far."

Ann Althouse said...

Leora writes:

If we are going to spend time on why porn is unrealistic, I think that ought to spend time on why romance novels and men’s adventure stories are unrealistic as well. I’d much prefer that the sex ed be brief and confine itself to this is how you get pregnant and there are serious diseases that can be transmitted by sex. I don’t think schools are the places to try to instruct people in how to have fulfilling sex lives because such advice should come from people who love and care about you and know you well rather than people who spend a three semester hours with you and 30 other people.