Lust, Greed, and Politics
Pornography, legalized prostitution, and sex-trafficking — what do they have in common? Your local candidates for election (with a few exceptions) won’t want to talk about the connections between them.
These topics are wide-ranging and deeply disturbing; they show the depths of human depravity.
To set the stage, we do have to acknowledge with thankfulness that Canada was not left without a law on prostitution. Though the Supreme Court struck down Canada’s law against prostitution in 2013, a new and better law was drawn up in response. This law makes the buying of sexual services illegal, putting the criminal responsibility on those who are demanding, rather than those who are selling (who are usually being exploited by a pimp). The law also prohibits the advertising of these ‘services’. Things could have been far worse if Canada had followed the Dutch example of legalizing brothels and prostitution; this has led the Netherlands to far more hidden and illegal prostitution than before legalization. We must be vigilant in maintaining our law from erosion.
On the subject of sex-trafficking, we also thankfully have laws that better protect victims than we had previously, thanks in no small part to the efforts of former MP Joy Smith. The problem in this area is not a lack of good laws, but the difficulty of enforcing the law. Despite the fact that trafficking is illegal, it is widespread and there is demand for it.
Now, when you think of trafficking, don’t think: “how are international smugglers getting their victims into Canada? Why don’t we protect our borders?” While there are victims from other countries, Canada’s main problem is within. It is far closer to home than many would imagine. There are pimps in towns or cities like yours who look for vulnerable young women and try to “befriend” them. They give them things they want, then estrange them from their families, make them dependent on the themselves (the pimps), and then sell them over and over. Some police forces have divisions that deal exclusively with these crimes and try to help these women out — while also catching the pimps.
But the fact is that there is high demand.
What is fuelling the demand? Many factors could be listed, but of course, lust is at the root. And lust is easily fuelled by pornography. Pornography has a significant impact on brain development (including addiction) especially in younger people. Numerous studies also show a link between pornography and aggressive sexual behaviours. This aggression has led to rape and murder as well as the demand for prostitutes.
So what is Canada doing about the spread of pornography? Profiting from it. Montreal is home to some of the largest pornography related businesses in the world. Again, this might not be what you think. The business that is done in Montreal is not the production of filthy and degrading videos, but rather the technical business of hosting websites (such as PornHub). It is similar to other IT work, except that PornHub’s customers are pornography producers and their business is to get their material onto the screens of as many users as possible. This is all legal but it leads to and enables crimes of many kinds. Trafficking is the biggest one, and our politicians should be taking it on as the starting point.
Our politicians ought to start tackling the porn industry in Montreal by making them prove that each image and each video they are helping to distribute, edit, or store in any way, is not the result of trafficking or coercion. This will be very difficult to do as the two are closely linked. Well-enforced laws of this kind could cripple Canada’s role in the distribution of porn.
Again, we must note that one MP did raise the issue of violent pornography during this session of Parliament; MP Arnold Viersen introduced Motion M-47 to begin a study on the effects of violent pornography. This motion was met with support from all parties and MPs publicly, but in the less-public setting of the committee stage, the motion was eventually quashed because “despite evidence of a correlation between negative sexual attitudes and behaviours and the viewing of pornography, research has not established any causal relationship among the general population to date.” Perhaps they did not look hard enough because they did not want to deal with the consequences and implications. Regardless, it was good that the issue was brought up.
It should not be surprising to see a connection to abortion also. Irresponsible sexual activity often leads to unplanned pregnancies, and fathers who don’t want to take up their responsibilities see abortion as their easy way out. Thus, abortion enables irresponsible and exploitive men to do whatever they want with no consequences for themselves. Feminists should be outraged.
Our Prime Minister claims to be a “feminist”, whatever that means. It should mean standing against the exploitation and objectification of women. It should mean being anti-pornography and anti sex-trafficking. He has spoken out against trafficking, but only expressed concern about pornography. He should be leading in these battles.
Politically, we must speak out against pornography and its distribution in Canada; PornHub should be shut down as a public health menace. There must be no turning back on Canada’s laws against buying sexual services, and laws against trafficking must be enforced.
Morally, we must not only speak out against the evils of viewing pornography and exploiting people sexually, but we must also be shining lights that show the world around us that marriage is good and celibate singleness is possible and rewarding.
Join CHP if you are not already a member and take a moral stand for what is good and right, and oppose all that is evil in our country.
Other Commentary by Peter Vogel:
- Time to Sell Your Stocks in Lego?
- Political Discussion or Racism?
- Cognitive Dissonance on Life-Saving Measures
- Temporary Crisis, Permanent Power-Grab
- So-Cons and Faux-Cons
- A Licence For Your Thoughts?
- Oops, a Senior’s Moment… for Canada
- Past Changes and Needed Changes
- Conscience, Morality, and Freedom
- The Election and the Consequences
- Affordability: Hidden Problems
- Lust, Greed, and Politics