Janice Shaw Crouse

In the days before automatic garbage disposals in kitchen sinks, good housewives would wrap up the household garbage and throw it away. Harkening back to those “good ‘ole days,” several organizations joined together in 1987 with Norma Norris, a woman who was determined to get rid of pornography by raising awareness of the numerous ways that pornography hurts people and harms communities. Thus, the annual White Ribbons Against Pornography (WRAP) campaign was launched — with dozens of organizations, including Concerned Women for America — urging supporters to wear and/or display a white ribbon indicating their opposition to pornography during WRAP week, October 26 — November 2.

Since 1987, the problem of porn has become infinitely greater — from less than 80,000 Internet porn sites in 1998 to nearly 1.5 million in 2003 — because the Internet has brought that evil right into our homes and bombarded even our children with obscene language and images. There are nearly 35 million visits to porn sites every month — some experts estimate that constitutes 1-in-4 Internet users.

Since 1987, in spite of the feminist movement that was supposed to keep women from being mere sex objects, women have increasingly been depicted in degrading and debased ways. Now, with the demand for younger and younger images, the harm has spread to children. Further, the exploding pornography industry — producing more than 15,000 new adult industry titles every year — has increased the demand for women and children photographed and filmed in sexualized situations far beyond what anyone could have imagined 20 years ago when the WRAP campaign started.

The naïve argue that what someone does in private is nobody else’s concern. Research shows, however, that pornography and obscenity are very much everyone’s concern. Pornography has become a multi-billion dollar industry — $5 billion annually — that victimizes both those who are involved in its production as well as those who consume the products. We have documented evidence today that pornography affects us all; it harms its users and the impact spreads to all who are connected with those individuals: the wives or husbands, boyfriends or girlfriends, and the whole family. We should be especially concerned about the nation’s children. The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children reports that they receive more than 1,000 complaints annually about online obscenity affecting children.

Janice Shaw Crouse

Janice Shaw Crouse is a former speechwriter for George H. W. Bush and now political commentator for the Concerned Women for America Legislative Action Committee.
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