Robert Knight

In 1865, following the most costly war in America’s history, the 13th Amendment abolished the odious institution of slavery in the United States.

Why, then, is telecommunications giant Verizon providing an outlet for the products of the modern-day slavery of sex trafficking and child-themed pornography? The short answer is that it’s good for the bottom line.

Speaking of the bottom, that’s where you find libertine societies where the only considerations are whether something makes money or involves adult consent. Stripped of moral restraints, the marketplace eventually serves up pedophilic and sexually violent content.

Each year, Morality in Media (MIM), an anti-pornography group headed by former Justice Department attorney Patrick A. Trueman, releases a “Dirty Dozen List” of the leading facilitators of pornography. This year, Attorney General Eric H. Holder, Jr. tops the list.

“As the pandemic of harm from pornography grows, Holder gives criminal pornographers the green light to proceed by stopping all enforcement of federal obscenity laws,” Mr. Trueman explains.

The list, which is far from comprehensive, includes Facebook, for not enforcing its own standards, the local networking site Tumblr, Google, and PlayStation for its live, streamed pornography and sexually violent games.

It also includes Verizon, citing the obscene movies it sells through FIOS. You’d think that a company that portrays itself as the acme of excellence would be embarrassed. But you’d be wrong.

Because of Supreme Court rulings, pornography is legal, but even the Court drew a line at obscenity, which is not protected speech under the First Amendment. The reason that even corporate giants now peddle obscenity is that the Justice Department, beginning in the Clinton years, stopped enforcing the law.

Consequently, Verizon is taking pimp money for such movies as “I Banged My Stepdad,” “I Did the Babysitter,” “Mom, Daughter and Me,” and “Gang Bang Sex Slaves.” These are actual titles.

Verizon’s Associate Director for Advertising and Content Standards, John P. Artney, blithely dismissed MIM’s concerns.

“The explosion in choice is a tremendous benefit to consumers, but not all consumers want to have access to all content for themselves and their families all of the time,” Artney responded in a letter. “Not all content is desirable to or appropriate for all consumers, however, and Verizon is proud to provide our customers with myriad tools to control the types of content that they and their families have access to through our service.”

Robert Knight

Robert Knight is an author, senior fellow for the American Civil Rights Union and a frequent contributor to Townhall.