A Rambling Post About Kids and Porn

This morning I read an article about the young woman who was sexually assaulted at Stanford last year. Two graduate students witnessed her being assaulted behind a dumpster. She was not even conscious.

The guy who was convicted claims he had her consent. He said he thought she was into it because she rubbed his back (I’m not sure what that really even means).

I can’t say whether or not he actually thought she had given consent, if he purely intended to victimize her, or if he thought she was going along with it before she passed out and just continued on (again, not okay). I don’t know his intent, though I believe his actions were wrong.

He’s trying to make this thing about the dangers of drinking and the bad things that can happen when you get drunk (which is true – it’s a bad idea; don’t do it). However, he needs to just take responsibility for his actions.

But, it made me wonder something else: how much pornography do you think that kid has consumed in his fairly short lifetime? Even if he was drunk, what had he already programmed his mind with prior to that night? What was driving him? Could his thinking have been warped enough to think she wanted it?

It reminded me of something that happened last summer. I was in Destin with some friends at the same time as a Dixie youth baseball tournament was going on. Our hotel was covered up with  boys and their families.

One of my friends overheard a boy, who looked to be 12 or 13, talking to an older boy and a couple of girls. He was telling them how, at night, he cuts through the woods behind his house to visit a girl to have sex with her. He said he was just “practicing on her” so he could get good at it. Then he could have any girl he wants.

Stop. Hold the phone. What??

Is that what he believes girls want? Is he that arrogant? Is he that foolish? Is he already that depraved? Is he on his way to becoming the guy on the Stanford campus?

We watched him for the next hour trying to impress the older boy, saying all manner of ridiculous things. He was completely shameless and unaffected by our presence. If we could have found his mama, she would have gotten an earful. He should have gotten an earful.

Who knows whether he was telling the truth or just making up stuff to impress the older guy (though, sadly, that behavior is not uncommon at his age). But, I’d bet the bank he’s ingested a whole lot of porn.

To say I’m concerned about the current situation with young people would be an understatement. It’s been on my mind a lot because it’s come up several times lately. You can look up the stats on porn exposure yourself, but only about 3% of boys and 17% of girls will NOT have been exposed to it by the time they’re 18.

Much of what is seen is deviant, meaning outside what we consider normal, even inside of a healthy marriage relationship. Think, beastiality, groups, same-sex, children, bondage, torture. If boys (and girls) are filling their eyes with deviant sexual images, what do we expect to happen? When they believe what they see should be a reflection of reality, then what?

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When they watch deceptive videos, where women are paid, coerced, or threatened, into pretending they like certain things, what will they believe to be true? What will they think is okay, when their primary education comes from deviant internet images? What will they believe women really want and need? Can they possibly have realistic expectations? Will they have any limits at all?

We cannot allow the Internet to educate our children. As far as it depends on us, we can’t allow them free and unbridled access to it. We can’t relax in this area because it’s so easy to find it, whether on purpose or innocently. I know someone whose kid found it by looking up deleted scenes from a kids movie.

It goes to show that we can’t have our cake and eat it, too, as a society. We can’t have a free-for-all culture, where everyone has the right to do what they wish, and not expect for there to be victims.

A mind that feeds on perversion eventually looks for an outlet. A mind that feeds on perversion loses sight of standards, of right and wrong – it is overtaken by lust, and desire to fulfill it. I wonder if that’s what happened at Stanford? Maybe not. But maybe.

I am concerned for what sort of men my daughters will find – will they find ones who’ve kept themselves free of such things? (And don’t feel safe in church – it’s there, too.) I’m also concerned for my boys. I don’t want them to be taken into this depravity.

We, as parents, have to be willing to do the work of protecting them, as we are able. That might mean computer filters, conversations with other parents, no sleepovers, saying no to the latest greatest gadgets, to certain friends, to certain activities.

As Christian parents we need to talk to them – a lot – about sexuality. There can be no taboo topics. Our kids need to know why it’s a beautiful gift from God that we need to protect for the right time and season.

They need to know that their hearts matter. They need to know that they are valuable people that deserve to be respected and honored. They need to learn to respect and value others.

They need to know love is not just a feeling but a desire to do good for another person, to put others first. They need to learn the art of self control and they need to understand that they can’t really do it, long term, apart from the Holy Spirit.

They need to know that if they fail they can talk to us, that God is ready and willing to restore them, that history doesn’t equal destiny.

I could ramble on and on about this. Bottom line – we have a problem. We’ve created a monster and there will be consequences.

Let’s be alert to the reality, pray for wisdom and be willing to do what it takes for our kids. It really matters.

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