The Religious Right's newest adversary of evangelicalism and outward disdain for pornography may have less to do with their distaste for it and more to do with the fact it is maxing out their credit cards.
Jerry Falwell may be dead, but the Moral Majority mob is still dealing out duplicity on issues of faith and flesh. In another dramatic display of heretical hypocrisy, a poll taken by the self-proclaimed "World's most Christian website", Christianet.com, found that a majority of Christian men – fifty-percent – are addicted to pornography! Additionally, the poll also reported that 20% of Christian women are keen to sneaking a peek at others fornicating for fun. Technology, in all its modern, unseemly depravity, it would presumably appear, is to blame.
Refreshing the reader's memory, these "porn again" Christians belong to the fomenting faction of virtuous prudes that fervently lined up and espoused former Attorney General John Ashcroft's "Crusade against Porn" and pleaded that the semi-nude, Art Deco statues – found in the halls of the Justice Department – have curtains draped over the exposed breasts of the sculptures. These same "modesty police" also stridently called for former President Bill Clinton's impeachment for a minor infidelity while residing in the White House. Being furtively naughty, it appears, is the new haughty for the holy.
Bill Cooper, President of Christianet.com, said, "We are seeing an escalation to the problem in both men and women who regularly attend church." The holy-roller Cooper, in usual self-righteous, sanctimonious style, offers his impressive imaginary reason for the increase: "Technology has allowed pornography to flood the marketplace beyond a controllable level." Evidently, Mr. Cooper feels he is having difficulty keeping his flock together and decided to blame his lack of dominion over the righteously duped on the grass of which they graze rather than the shepherd in charge of herding his sheeple.
The website, Christianet.com, can only be described as a cornucopia of naked pandering of Christianity for profit and a brazen marketing of faith-based propaganda. A quick review of the site will find links on everything from "Christian jobs" to "Christian insurance" and the ubiquitous Christian favorite, "Chick-fil-A." With an aficionado list of religious-right favorites from "Obeying the Creationist View" to the "Chief-in-Pharisee" himself, George W. Bush, the website abruptly turns more venal than venereal.
Remarkably, Clay Jones, founder and President of Second Glance Ministries, a co-sponsor of the Christianet.com website and poll, rather disingenuously alludes to a "paradigm shift" during the past four years in which the sexual behavior of so-called 'Christians" has changed. This novel "shift" insinuates that Christians are more apt to stray – due to advances in technology – as of late and search out a piece of finely purveyed filth on film. Perhaps it is not human behavior that has changed, but ironically, the incorrectly blamed technology for the shift in seedy activities is the very mechanism that has exposed the religious-right's voracious appetite for flesh peddler's products all along.
Another salacious tidbit from their "poll on porn for Christians" is that, "60% of the women who answered the survey confessed [to] having significant struggles with lust." Furthermore, "40% admitted to being involved in sexual sin in the past year." When a website offers such sinfully rich items to choose from like, "Second Glance", a set of CD's that intimate that an averted glance of sexual nuance presumably reveals you are going straight to the arms of Satan for such wantonness of admiration. It's no wonder these women have "struggles with lust."
The poll moreover feigns an implication that no one is immune from the "vice-grip clutches of sexually addictive behaviors" and that "repeated attempts at sexual gratification" can fell even the most stalwartly of faith-followers, including deacons and even clergy. What the poll in truth denotes is greater empirical evidence that we are creatures of a sexual nature that inevitably will follow our primordial instincts. That humankind yearns for that which we find pleasing to the eye and pleasurable to our senses. Clergy and deacons – or any other creature for that matter – insatiable appetites for sexual gratification is purely an untainted attempt to honor our hormonally-driven instinct to "spread our seed" and continually re-populate the Earth. Sans any physical gratification, as Cooper and Jones rather dismally propose as a means to salvation, Homo sapiens would quickly fall extinct.
Scattered about all this Christian pious hyperbole is the banal bantering and over-looked double-standard being applied by the followers of this fundamentally flawed faith. Their belief in a superlative set of human conduct laws, divvied out by dogmatic charlatans, provides suppressive camouflage for reprehensible, spiteful judgment of others. While those that deceptively declare to know Christ best misleadingly warn us of the ever-increasing dangers of the bustle to the brothel of digital desires, they themselves gobble up cinematic sins of smut at a meteoric meter.
While the poll on porn among practicing Christians evokes evidence of an addiction to portrayals of hedonistic acts, a closer examination will reveal an addiction of another kind. It has been said that prostitution is the oldest profession in the world. What the sanctimonious among us are in actuality addicted to is the hawking of old-fashion prostitution. Not prostitution in the literal "street walker" sense, but the degraded, twisted misuse and shameless sale of something of invaluable significance – in this case the Golden Rule of life – in exchange for power and profits, subjugation and submission.
The Christian-right's affinity for porn – and the need to scorn it – is simply a Full-Monte display of heresy and sacrilege. Thus, this proves once again that the most egregious offenders of the Christian faith, who cannot control their own excesses and indulgences, must forever assign blame and find fault with everyone else but themselves. This time, it's technology taking the rap.
Author's note: This article is an updated and revised version of a previous essay. In light of the ever-expanding and encroaching media empire of News Corp and Rupert Murdoch (a self-described "Born Again"), I felt the unusual juxtaposition of porn and Christianity was once again significant and germane as Murdoch has been secretly building a stable of wholly-owned pornographic channels for his BSkyB subsidiary.