The Fraser Report on pornography, with its assumption that pornography is a matter of inequality, rather than sexual immorality, is of great concern to those already alarmed at the erosion of traditional family values.
We can endorse fully the committee’s recommendation that child pornography is completely unacceptable. With the exception of homosexual activists, even those advocating the most liberal position generally support prohibition of child pornography. In addition, we can support the recommendation that films or videos, showing actual physical harm taking place should also be prohibited – although the proposed penalties could be more severe.
What we cannot support is the notion that pornography is only to be regulated under the Criminal Code when it is clear that sexual violence or coercion is taking place. If such elements are not present, it would appear that we again fall victim to the militant feminist cry for “choice.”
Research has clearly shown that pornography is harmful and addictive. Addicts become desensitized over a period of time and move from “soft-core” to “hard core” pornography. Sexually-explicit hard-core pornography does not necessarily include elements of violence and coercion. Yet, by the standards of the Fraser Committee, this type of pornography is not even assumed to be of legislative concern.
It is naïve to believe that classification by a review board or the CRTC would address the serious problem of sexually-explicit videotapes and television programs being easily available to young people. This material pollutes our environment.
The Fraser Report is merely giving the government a means to pacify the feminists, without coming any closer to solving the real problem of pornography. It will, presumably, be easier for the politicians to pass legislation to regulate violent pornography than to satisfy feminist demands in the economic sphere.
Pornography has recently been called “the literature of sexual deviance.” Common sense tells us this is so and the recent research confirms it. Instead of regulating the kind of pornography that some pressure groups find offensive and leaving the rest, more careful consideration should be given to the research. Only then should legislation be proposed.