Goldstein's assertion that pornography doesn't cause violence needs to be answered. Aside from the fact that pornography is violence in itself, research proves it provokes countless crimes against women, children and young men.
As Kirk points out, a 1985 FBI study of 36 serial murderers showed that 81% "said their biggest sexual interest was in reading pornography."
Pornography's defenders should talk with James Weaver, who recently completed a landmark study at the University of Indiana. Weaver's most striking finding was that exposure to pornography "can strongly influence perceptions of the 'sexual receptivity' of otherwise sexually non-permissive females without adversely impacting other personality assessments." In other words, pornography makes some men believe women want to be raped.
Not everyone who uses porn will commit violent acts, just as not everyone who tries drugs will turn violent. But our society has outlawed both because we know they can exploit, degrade, addict and kill human beings.
We say "bravo" to Kirk's complaint "that despite having laws on the books, pornography remains readily available on the shelves of 'adult' bookstores and so-called 'family' video outlets." There's a desperate need for enforcement of existing laws against the obscenity merchants in Southern California.
The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors has asked that the manufacturers and distributors of 30 porn videos be prosecuted.
Public officials need to enforce these democratically enacted laws, upheld by the courts, against an illegal industry dominated by organized crime.
Director of Public Affairs DENNIS JARRARD
Commission on Obscenity
Archdiocese of Los Angeles