‘Child on Child Sexual Abuse Has Reached Crisis Levels,’ Experts Tell Congress
By Movieguide® Contributor
On June 13, Exodus Cry, an organization committed to fighting sex trafficking and sexual exploitation, co-hosted a symposium on Capitol Hill with the National Center on Sexual Exploitation to deliver a petition to protect children from porn.
“Survivors of exploitation, mothers of victims, ex-porn performers, and experts came together to sound the alarm on the urgent need to enact laws that will protect victims of non-consensual porn and protect children from being exposed to porn online,” says Exodus Cry, explaining their symposium.
“When we look at the last seven years of data that we’ve collected, anywhere from a third to a half of perpetrators are kids themselves,” Exodus Cry reveals. “Kids are conflating violence with sexual pleasure, because of what they’re seeing in porn.”
Dr. Ted Baehr explains in The Media-Wise Family that “Extensive research has been conducted on the aggressive pornography to be found in R-rated films. These movies are easily accessible to teenagers. Many of these movies are broadcast on cable TV.”
Not only is porn accessible via TV, but many children stumble across it on cell phones and the internet. In an article for the New York Post, Exodus Cry founder and CEO Benjamin Nolot shares the story of a young boy who used his mother’s phone and ended up Pornhub after a few Google searches.
Nolot also reveals that 9 in 10 American boys encounter porn before the age of 18, and the average age of exposure is 11. Additionally, a recent Indiana University study reveals that “84 percent of males and 57 percent of females ages 14 to 18 in the United States have been exposed.”
Increased exposure to violent porn, whether through TV, the internet or other sources, detrimentally affects the children who experience it.
In The Culture-Wise Family, Dr. Baehr explains that “when a young viewer watches a violent television episode, he or she stores that behavior in his brain. When a similar situation arises in reality, the viewer may retrieve and mimic the violent act once viewed.”
Another study cited in The Culture-Wise Family states that “Viewing entertainment violence can lead to increases in aggressive attitudes, values, and behaviors, particularly in children.”
Exodus Cry explains that, while viewing porn will not necessarily lead a person to commit a sexual crime, “there are strong and irrefutable links that have been found between watching of violent porn and committing sexual assault. Child-on-child sexual abuse has reached crisis levels, with children often citing wanting to re-enact porn as their reasoning, either before or after the assault.”
“The growth in violent porn, and the exposure of porn to younger and younger children, is absolutely shaping and forming the sexual templates of young people, and as the porn gets more violent, so do the desires for sexual violence,” Exodus Cry discloses.
“Just like a drug addict keeps looking for the initial ‘ideal’ rush,” explains Dr. Baehr in The Culture-Wise Family, “so those who are addicted to the sex and violence in films seek increasing doses of sex and violence to appease their lust.”
Their Capitol Hill symposium represents one aspect of Exodus Cry’s work to protect children from the life-shattering effects of porn. They offered “practical policy solutions to lawmakers to help end child exposure to porn and nonconsensual porn.”
“Children learn violent sexual behavior from somewhere,” and “porn is without doubt a MAJOR contributing player,” says Exodus Cry. “We will not remain silent while porn ravages the minds of our children when there’s something we can do to help protect them. We must act.”
Movieguide® previously reported on Exodus Cry’s work:
The Christian advocacy group Exodus Cry is on the front lines of exposing the danger and harm that pornographic content has on minors.
In their most recent campaign, Protect Children Not Porn, Exodus Cry is working to hold big tech and big porn companies accountable for their exploiting minors for money.
On their social media, Exodus Cry shared stories from anonymous and named people who tell their personal stories of childhood exposure to porn.
“These are real stories of the damage of childhood exposure to pornography and they aren’t isolated incidents,” a new Exodus Cry video states. “The average age of exposure to porn, often accidental, is only 11-years-old. According to a cyber security company, 22 percent of all minors who consume pornography are under 10, 36 (percent) are between 10 and 14.”
The video also notes that the nature of the adult videos, which have are easily accessible with little to no safety measures, is more graphic.
“Popular forms of porn are increasingly violent and abusive and the effects of exposure on our children are devastating,” the video continued. “Addiction, depression, suicidal thoughts, it shapes what children believe about sex, what is acceptable and desirable.”
“It normalizes sexual violence and increases the likelihood of sexually violent behavior and the reason that our children are being subjected to the harm of adult content is because there is virtually no age verification to prevent underage access,” the video explains. “Big tech and big porn have built a world with a complete disregard for our children’s safety.”
The video proceeds to call out companies like Google and Twitter, which have failed to implement effective safety tools to protect underage users.
“Google’s business is search, and because of SEO and lack of safeguards, even the most innocent search could expose a child to violent pornography in seconds,” the video notes. “Twitter freely markets and hosts porn, all of which is easily accessible to any miner with an account and every porn site is incentivized to allow underage access because more web traffic means more money and more consumers.”
Since investigative journalist, Nicolas Kristof published a scathing expose of PornHub and its parent company, MindGeek, lawsuits from victims of sexual exploitation have grown exponentially.
Exodus Cry has reportedly received hundreds of real-life stories about the effects that pornography exposure has had on their entire lives.
“Underage exposure is robbing our children of innocence and doing lifelong damage while big tech and big porn enable and profit from it,” the video states. “We must demand that every site that hosts pornography must require true age verification to prevent underage access.”
“This technology already exists, the main porn players who developed it just refuse to use it,” it continues. “Hold big tech and big porn accountable, join this fight, sign the petition to
legally require age verification for all.”
CEO and Founder of Exodus Cry, Benjamin Nolot, noted: “We need Big Porn and Big Tech to be held accountable for their reckless disregard of the safety of our children. Our hope is that this video and campaign will provoke people to join the growing movement demanding age verification, with ID, on all sites that host porn. We have to do more.”
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