Statement by Dawn Hawkins, Executive Director of NCOSE
Washington, DC – After the Hilton Houston Galleria Area Hotel cancelled as the venue for the TEXXXAS pornography expo in Houston next month, the event’s creator, John Gray, spoke out claiming the event would be contained and harmless. The National Center on Sexual Exploitation (NCOSE) disagrees, citing peer-reviewed research on the harms of pornography.
“Pornography, even consumed privately, has public consequences,” said Dawn Hawkins, Executive Director of the National Center on Sexual Exploitation. “Not only does a pornography expo like TEXXXAS serve as a glowing welcome sign to any pimps or sex traffickers in the area, but it also normalizes pornography in general, despite its many documented harms. The attitudes and beliefs shaped by pornography not only profoundly impact an individual and their personal relationships, but they also feed broad social ills like rape culture and sexual assault.”
Below is a sampling of peer-reviewed research revealing the harms of pornography:
- Women as Sex Objects: Internet pornography is shown to normalize the notion that women are sex objects among both adolescent boys and girls.[i]
- Committing Sexual Offenses and Accepting Rape Myths: A meta-analysis of 46 studies reported that the effects of exposure to pornographic material are “clear and consistent,” and puts one at increased risk for committing sexual offenses and accepting rape myths.[ii]
- Increased Verbal and Physical Aggression: A 2015 meta-analysis of 22 studies from seven countries found that internationally the consumption of pornography was significantly associated with increases in verbal and physical aggression, among males and females alike.[iii]
- Fuels Demand for Sexual Exploitation: An analysis of 101 sex buyers compared to 100 men who did not buy sex found that sex buyers masturbate to pornography more often than non-sex buyers, masturbate to more types of pornography, and reported that their sexual preferences changed so that they sought more sadomasochistic and anal sex.[iv] Other research also demonstrates an association between purchase of commercial sex acts and pornography use.[v]
- Pornography Use Shrinks Brain: A 2014 study found that increased pornography use is linked to decreased brain matter in the areas of the brain associated with motivation and decision-making, and contributed to impaired impulse control and desensitization to sexual reward.[vi]
“Even ‘mainstream’ hardcore pornography promotes themes of racism, incest, and exploitation,” Hawkins stated. “Among the performers who plan to participate in the TEXXXAS event, just a few of their film and scene titles include: ‘Mom Needs Money,’ ‘How to Bang Your Teacher,’ ‘My Son Banged My Wife,’ ‘Interracial Gangbang,’ ‘Mother-Daughter Exchange Club 22’ and ‘My Sister Has a Thick White Booty.’ Event organizer John Grey has publically stated, ‘Houston needs something like this, I think, and there is a market for it.’ I am certain that the mainstreaming of racist, misogynistic, and abuse-laden sexual material is not something Houston, or any community, wants or needs.”
To learn more about the harms of pornography visit: endsexualexploitation.org/publichealth
To learn more about the Coalition to End Sexual Exploitation (CESE) Summit being held in Houston, TX, Sept. 29 – Oct. 1 visit: endexploitationmovement.com
[i] Jochen Peter and Patti Valkenburg, “Adolescent’s Exposure to a Sexualized Media Environment and Their Notions of Women as Sex Objects,” Sex Roles 56 (2007): 381-395; Jane D. Brown and Kelly L. L’Engle, “X-Rated: Sexual Attitudes and Behaviors Associated with U.S. Early Adolescents’ Exposure to Sexually Explicit Media,” Communication Research 36, no. 1 (February 2009): 129-151.
[ii] Elizabeth Paolucci-Oddone, Mark Genuis, and Claudio Violato, “A Meta-Analysis of the Published Research on the Effects of Pornography,” The Changing Family and Child Development, ed. Claudio Violato, Elizabeth Paolucci, and Mark Genuis (Aldershot, England: Ashgate Publishing, 2000), 48–59.
[iii] Paul J. Wright, Robert S. Tokunaga, and Ashley Kraus, “A Meta-Analysis of Pornography Consumption and Actual Acts of Sexual Aggression in General Population Studies,” Journal of Communication 66, no. 1 (February 2016): 183–205.
[iv] Melissa Farley, Emily Schuckman, Jacqueline M. Golding, Kristen Houser, Laura Jarrett, Peter Qualliotine, Michele Decker, “Comparing Sex Buyers with Men Who Don’t Buy Sex: ‘You can have a good time with the servitude’ vs. ‘You’re supporting a system of degradation.’” Paper presented at Psychologists for Social Responsibility Annual Meeting July 15, 2011, Boston, MA. San Francisco: Prostitution Research & Education (2011).
[v] Steven Stack, Ira Wasserman, and Roger Kern, “Adult Social Bonds and Use of Internet Pornography,” Social Science Quarterly 85 (2004): 75–88; Martin A. Monto and Nick McRee, “A Comparison of the Male Customers of Female Street Prostitutes With National Samples of Men,” International Journal of Offender Therapy and Comparative Criminology 49, no. 5 (2005): 505–529; Martin A. Monto, “Summary Report for National Institute of Justice Grant #97-IJ-CX-0033 ‘Focusing on the Clients of Street Prostitutes: A Creative Approach to Reducing Violence Against Women’” (October 30, 1999).
[vi] Simone Kühn and Jürgen Gallinat, “Brain Structure and Functional Connectivity Associated with Pornography Consumption,” JAMA Psychiatry 71, no. 7 (2014): 827–834.
About National Center on Sexual Exploitation (NCOSE)
Founded in 1962, National Center on Sexual Exploitation (NCOSE) is the leading national organization dedicated to opposing pornography by highlighting the links to sex trafficking, violence against women, child abuse, and addiction. NCOSE embraces a mission to defend human dignity and to advocate for the universal right of sexual justice, which is freedom from sexual exploitation, objectification, and violence.
National Center on Sexual Exploitation
1100 G St., NW Washington, DC 20005