It’s never harmless; for those who produce it, for those who consume it, or for the growing number of children abused because of it.
According to a recent news report, parents today have far worse things to worry about than black eyes and bloody noses on the playground, or their kids learning cuss words from their friends, or their kids failing geometry.
Reporters at Kansas City television station KSHB recently interviewed doctors and nurses at Children’s Mercy Hospital. This is a hospital that sees 1,000 children each year who have been sexually assaulted. Heidi Olson, a nurse there who treats these victims, said she was shocked at what the data has told them: “almost half of our perpetrators are minors” between the ages of eleven and fifteen. You heard that right. We have an epidemic now of children abusing children.
Little girls between the ages of four and eight are the most likely victims. As the father of three young girls, this is hard to stomach. But it gets worse. According to Jennifer Hanson, a child abuse pediatrician at Mercy, many of these assaults “include physical violence in addition to sexual violence.”
A major factor, unsurprisingly, in the victimization of these children is something we are often told is “harmless”: pornography. Often, according to Mercy nurses, the young victims are forced to view porn, others forced to act out something portrayed in a pornographic video, and others are recorded in a sexual act.
I’ve said it before and I will say it again and again: Ideas have consequences, and bad ideas have victims. And the consistent casualties of the sexual revolution are children, and that victim count climbs year after year.
Among the truths challenged and usurped by the sexual revolution is that sex, and everything related to it, should be reserved for marriage. From the beginning, when sex was divorced from marriage and procreation, children have paid a high cost as adult sexual desire became the telos, the ultimate goal of life. The kids, we’ve been told over and over, will be fine: the kids born out of wedlock, the kids who grow up without fathers, the kids abused by their mothers’ live-in boyfriends, the unborn kids not wanted and aborted, the kids who are the social experiments of our new ideas about sex and gender.
And since the days of Hugh Hefner, the sexual revolution’s most effective champion, we’ve been told that porn is a harmless form of entertainment for sophisticated people. Wrong. Study after study shows the destructive impact of pornography. Yes on adults, and on those victims expected to play along with porn-inspired fantasies. But also on children, some very young, who are exposed to it, are acting out what they see, and are forcing other children to participate.
Shockingly, twenty five percent of all sex crimes are now committed by minors.
So parents, we’ve got our work cut out for us. We must first and foremost pray for our kids. We must engage the parental control options on our computers, cell phones, and televisions. We need to make sure schools and libraries are protecting children from porn.
But as Josh McDowell once told me, the question isn’t if our kids will encounter porn. The question is, how will they handle it when they encounter it. We must have serious and repeated discussions about the dangers of pornography, and why they must avoid it. There are signs of porn addiction which we should learn and be looking for. Come to BreakPoint.org to find resources that can help.
But please, don’t forget the most important thing. We must teach our children what sex is for, how it fits in God’s beautiful and kind design for those He made in His image. As the doctors and nurses at Mercy Hospital have tragically discovered, the fruit of the sexual revolution is rotten and deadly. But God’s plan for humanity is light and life.
— by John Stonestreet
Stonestreet is the Director of Strategic Partnerships for the Chuck Colson Center for Christian Worldview and is heard on Breakpoint. Copyright© 2019 Prison Fellowship Ministries. Reprinted with permission. BreakPoint is a ministry of Prison Fellowship Ministries.