Is it possible to talk about the pollution of sexuality in the same way that we can talk about the pollution of the air with sulfur dioxide belched out of smoke stacks or pollution of the water through industrial waste dumped in rivers?
If we can befoul nature by violating its intrinsic order and beauty, can we do the same to human nature and, in particular, human sexuality? If intemperance and greed destroy the natural environment, do they also destroy the sexual environment? Can we measure that destruction, so that it is scientifically verifiable?
Yes. Our sexual environment is about as polluted as China’s air, and the harm caused by such pollution is just as scientifically demonstrable.
Readers will forgive me, I hope, if I have to treat some rather delicate topics in what follows. Talking about the evil effects of dumping raw sewage into our streams is much less embarrassing than examining the evils of dumping the parallel equivalent of raw sewage into our sexuality. But the seriousness of contemporary sexual pollution demands some candor on my part.
There is, quite literally, a world-wide epidemic of erectile dysfunction (ED) among young men, men less than 40 years old. While it is quite natural to have problems of this sort in men over 40 (although it has been made worse by increasing obesity and the diabetes that often comes with it), a significant rise in the number of young men with ED is historically unprecedented. In one study, one in four men seeking treatment for ED was under 40 years old—setting off an alarm for clinicians. In another, a third of young men were suffering from sexual dysfunction. A study (in Italy) uncovered a doubling of ED in teenagers in just eight years (2005-2013). A study in Canada found that over 50% of male teens reported some ED symptoms, with half of those being severe.
There are several causal factors, including increased obesity in the young, as well as the use of illegal drugs. But one cause stands out with great clarity: the world-wide epidemic of ED is made possible by the world-wide availability of internet porn coupled with obsessive masturbation. The internet is the pipeline that dumps the raw sexual sewage into our sexual environment at a level unprecedented historically.
Pause here to consider this epidemic in an illuminating way. What if the world-wide population of pigeons, white-tailed deer, or dolphins were suddenly exhibiting just this kind of sexual dysfunction, thereby severely harming its reproductive capacities? Wouldn’t that be considered a kind of environmental crisis? Wouldn’t we be looking for causes, and attempting to help the poor creatures from sexual self-destruction?
ED isn’t the only verifiable effect of sexual pollution. The super-normal, intense nature of porn causes actual addiction, just like cocaine or any opioid, causing what researchers Jennifer Riemersma and Michael Sytsma, call “a toxic cocktail of contemporary addiction.”
As scientists now understand, addiction of any kind, including sexual addiction, “hijacks” the brain’s natural reward system, primarily by overworking the “pleasure” neurotransmitter dopamine. When our pleasure center is continually overstimulated, it responds by “dulling down” by producing less dopamine or eliminating dopamine receptors. That makes the addict continually look for a stronger “fix,” spending ever more time chasing ever more unnatural sexual stimuli. This is all scientifically verifiable, as part of the larger research done into addiction of all kinds and its measurable, deleterious effects on the human brain.
This cycle of addiction leads to further destruction of our sexuality and sexual environment. The first kind of destruction is social, or rather, it strikes at the very heart of the social order: marriage. The American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers, the top 1600 lawyers dealing with divorce, report that 56% of divorces they deal with are the result of a spouse’s obsession with porn. If human marital love is the perfection of our sexual nature, then this is decidedly destructive and unnatural result. As sociologists and psychologist attest, destroyed families are a leading source of every kind of social disorder and pathology.
Again, step back and imagine an illuminating scenario, one based on actual scientific experiments. What if we found that the mating of adult male rhesus macaques in the wild was being significantly disrupted by prankster teenagers having hung pictures of female macaques’ hindquarters from the trees, which the titillated males soon preferred to the real thing? Wouldn’t we want to catch and punish the perpetrators and restore the macaques to sexual sanity?
In addition to the social harm of addiction to porn, we have a second kind of destruction that strikes at the naturalness of sexuality itself. If biologists look at any other creature in nature that reproduces through male and female sexual union, they will assure you that—amazingly!—sexuality is naturally designed for sexual procreation. By contrast, the cycle of sexual addiction drives human sexuality to the far limits of the unnatural, seeking a libidinous “fix” in anything but heterosexual intercourse.
Every sexual combination or variation is now available on the web, both creating and responding to the demands of the addicted: sex with any gender combination, including transgender; oral, anal, and masturbatory sex; sex with objects; sex with animals; sex involving participants wearing diapers; sex involving feces or urine; amputee sex; sex involving choking and vomiting; brutal sadism, torture, rape, and even murder; cartoon pornography and child pornography; sex with sexbots; and finally, computer generated virtual sex of any and every unnatural, and previously unimaginable kind.
Now think about this parallel as well. If any other animal exhibited this bizarre array of entirely unnatural sexual behaviors, every sane scientist would be looking for some destructive cause in the environment, some major haywiring of its DNA. But when it comes to human nature, somehow this scientific understanding of “natural” is dismissed without explanation.
We can map the downslide into the evermore unnatural in porn itself. As sociologist and researcher Dr. Natalie Purcell has shown in depressing, nauseating detail, porn movies over the last forty years have become increasingly violent and misogynist, with women being choked, suffocated, dragged by the hair, gang raped, slapped, punched, gagged through oral sex to the point of vomiting, and humiliated in other ways that I have not the courage or the stomach to report (much of it dealing with hideously disgusting variations of anal intercourse). The women either pretend to love it, the more abusive the better, or the women are shown actually suffering in their painful humiliation as real rape victims, both of which are meant to “turn on” porn addicts seeking new highs, both of which form the brains of porn viewers to associate their own sexual satisfaction with brutal and unnatural violations of women.
All of this, we now understand, “re-wires” the brain’s pleasure system in regard to sexual desire, literally twisting natural sexual desire into ever-more unnatural and self-destructive addictions. For the sexually malformed, only the unnatural is desirable. That’s the result of what addiction scientists call “tolerance,” the above-mentioned dulling down of the brain’s pleasure circuits, and the consequent need for ever greater stimulation.
That brings us to a third, related kind of destruction: moral destruction. The “tolerance” caused by dulling down the brain’s pleasure circuits causes ever-widening sexual “tolerance” in society. As the increasingly unnatural porn spreads throughout society, affecting more and more men and women, the sexually unnatural is normalized socially, as in radically redefining the sexual desires and hence the sexual morality of society. With anal sex the new “high” among, and the porn-addicted getting ever younger, is it a really a shock that young teenage girls now routinely complain of being forced to “perform” accordingly? With rape as the new turn-on, is it any wonder that young men increasingly associate sex with violence?
Perhaps adding a fourth kind of destruction might tip the scales: psychological and physical destruction. The number of porn addicted is so large, that the afflicted have started therapeutic chat sites for those trying to shake the addiction. And no wonder. Listen to the list of deleterious symptoms: along with ED, they experience irritability, fatigue, sleeplessness, trembling, inability to focus or concentrate, depression, completely deadened sexual desire for an actual person of the opposite sex, completely dead libido period, significant social awkwardness, loss of job or flunking in school, development of ever-more alarming sexual tastes, panic attacks, memory impairment, and thoughts of suicide. As the conversation among recovering porn addicts makes clear, they realized that the symptoms were porn-caused because the ill effects went away after they quit.
Now which of these symptoms doesn’t count as a scientifically, medically verifiable bad effect of porn addiction? If some other cause were bringing about such awful effects, we’d declare societal “war” on the causes. But you can’t declare war on malformed sexuality without calling into question the assumption of the sexual revolution that there is no such thing as malformed sexuality.
Given all that I’ve offered in the way of obvious, demonstrable ill effects on human nature, how could anyone deny that there is such a thing as sexual pollution? How much more destruction is needed? How much more harm can we sustain without social collapse? And finally, at what point will the sexual revolution admit defeat, and confess that the Catholic Church was right all along about sex.
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