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(Edited November 19th, 2014)

There was a time when pornography was widely rejected and almost universally regarded as inappropriate fare for child and adult.  As time marches on our society descends deeper into the abyss of immorality. Is there a correlation between the rise of sex crimes, sexual abuse of children, divorce, the spread of sexually transmitted diseases etc. and pornography?  These are all among the standard topics of concern as it relates to that correlation to pornography.  But one article a friend posted to social media recently caught my eye and at first raised my eyebrow.  Could it be that pornography impeded the academic performance teenage boys?

In his article “Boys, Porn and Education”, Sean Fitzpatrick writes,

The headmaster of the all-boys boarding school I attended when I was a teenager was always wary of admitting students to the academy that had been exposed to pornography. Among his reasons for this was that boys who had carnal knowledge—even on the level that pornography affords—very often found it an impediment in the process of their education.

Now, I must admit that sound a bit like a throwback to the ignorance of days gone by when well-meaning headmasters wielded an unopposed power to make unfounded claims and implement remedies at will.  Fitzpatrick goes on to explain,

Though reports abound analyzing what percentage of the web is devoted to smut, or what the addictive properties of online porn are, or what it is doing to relationships, or how it is affecting bodies and brains, one thing is certain without scientific data or social studies: Internet pornography is damaging the lives and minds of possibly every single boy in this country, impeding his ability to be drawn to virtue and wisdom—in other words, impeding his education.

This is a bold claim.  For porn peddlers, the reaction would be an obvious mocking of such claims and use the argument that crept into my mind at first glance –This is a throwback to the naivety and overzealous and unchecked power of ‘the church’.  But IS it? What would be naïve is to presume that “even boys from good families” says Fitzpatrick, are not exposed to pornography.  We can make a comparison between the tobacco and pornography industries.  That comparison is that we learn from the tobacco industry that some enterprises that are harmful to society will be lied about, facts concealed, truth sequestered and money made –LOTS of it!  So let us at least agree that nothing that flows from the filthy mouths of these peddlers of pornography is credible and cannot be accepted at face value.

The author finally makes this profound argument, and I have agreed with it as a matter of faith alone.  At least until now.  He says,

The reason pornography hinders a boy’s ability to accept and enjoy education is because pornography creates a barrier to wonder by numbing the sense of wonder. Without wonder, education is a crippled thing at best. Socrates taught that wonder is the beginning of wisdom, the very occasion of education, and pornography wounds the ability to wonder through the voyeuristic, shameless stripping of one of the most sacred sources of wonder. It creates desensitization to beauty, robbing boys of their innocence through the elimination of the mysteries of the heart, severely impairing their ability to be awed or find pleasure in the beautiful. Jaded spirits are not very susceptible to formation. Cynicism quickly develops as a defense. Boys are finally lost to apathy in a world that fails to titillate. The fantasy, or blasphemy, of reality results in a loss of desire for reality, which is the foundation of any education. This latter principle of teaching through exposure to reality is a particularly powerful tool in educating young men, as boys tend to be highly sensory and active, and the experience of the world and its mysteries is an arena for wonder. Pornography eradicates mystery, and without mystery, boys will lose their ability to wonder, and in a large part, their ability to become wise—which is the work of education.

Mr. Fitzpatrick is now the headmaster at that same school.  He is confronted with class of boys most, if not all of which have been exposed to the mind damning and insidious filth at least to some extent. He is convinced this is real and it is an impediment to the development of young boys. The implications of this claim are incalculable, perhaps in ways we have not even considered.  It is a scourge in our society.

Those who are familiar with my writing know I have often referred to one, Antonio Gramsci.  Let me pain you with the reiteration of his ‘theory’.   I will simply recount one my writings about him and education. 

Gramsci (22 January 1891 – 27 April 1937), was the founding member and at one point, the leader of the Italian Communist Party.  Writer David L. Goetsch says of Gramsci, ‘Most Americans have heard of Karl Marx and his plan for overthrowing democratic governments through armed revolts of the workers.  But few Americans have heard of Antonio Gramsci.  This is too bad because Gramsci is the communist philosopher who developed a theory specifically for overthrowing America.  Gramsci thought that overthrowing the United States through an armed revolt of indigenous workers was unrealistic.  He theorized that a better approach would be to undermine the culture and morality of America so that our country would destroy itself from within.”  (Goetsch, 2012; see full text of article here).

If you subscribe as I do to the idea that there has long been a covert operation underway to undermine America’s values as a means to subjugate our nation, to usurp our liberties and our peace, all for the purpose of supplanting it with tyranny, then you will not have a difficult time connecting the dots.  If we are to heal our land, education must reign supreme as I argued in “Prologue to a Farce or a Tragedy”.  Whether or not it was Gramsci that commenced with the plan or not it is crystal clear that pornography is a scourge to freedom and peace.  It will enforce ignorance and leave us vulnerable to the will of evil and conspiring men and women who would love to supplant our inspired and revolutionary (for its day), form of self-government.  Not only does it damage people spiritually, it corrodes and decomposes our intellectual, social and moral senses.

If we want to heal our land, the time to act is now, because America, you’re too young to die.

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