Throughout history, society greatly esteemed morals. What used to hold a place of respect by many now appears ludicrous and pointless. Sexual values, for example, manifests this recently acquired, negative viewpoint. But attaining these goals not only constitutes a positive achievement for society, but also exemplifies what God asks of us. In 1 Corinthians 4:8, it says to "flee from sexual immorality" because in our bodies dwells the living God. Our societies' lackadaisical attitude toward pornography and prostitution as well as its failure to encourage abstinence creates uncertainty and confusion in the minds of a younger generation still struggling and deciding what they should believe. Why should we contradict and deny the universal truths contained in the greatest book ever written? These truths represent universal laws appropriate for all people since almost all the world's religion profess many of these teachings as doctrine.
Too many for too long find abstinence meaningless. In America alone, by a teen's 15th birthday, 18% of girls and 27% of boys experience sexual intercourse. By their 17th birthdays, the figures are 52% and 58% for girls and boys respectively. These figures might significantly fall through the use of education from schools as well as parents. Not only does having sex before marriage spread disease, create unwanted pregnancies, and preventable abortions; it instills in the individual feelings of worthlessness, depression, and emotional instability. When people search for acceptance, affection, love and commitment through sexual activity before marriage, the results of their decision can affect them for a lifetime- if not physically then emotionally. Studies show sexually promiscuous teenagers become more susceptible to alcohol and drug abuse, as well as more trouble in school, and sexually active girls become more likely to experience depression, low self esteem, loneliness, or even to attempt suicide. Ann Landers, a renowned columnist for newspapers across the United States, said it well; "I met him, I like him. I liked him, I loved him. I loved him, I let him. I let him, I lost him."
Pornography, an issue permeating our society, creates downfalls for many people. The unrealistic image of women created through pornography not only degrades women but also devalues, dehumanizes, and diminishes their self-esteem. In addition to painting this demeaning image of women as mere tools to satisfy men's physical desires, it suggests that sex need not be related to love, marality, commitment or responsibility. This distortion normalizes brutality of women, implying that girls and women deserve this treatment. Victims of pornography include children as well as women. Children become helpless targets because vendors in the sex industry know they can make a few dollars exploiting these innocent children. Crippling our emotions and desensitizing our moral touchstone, society fails to recognize the dehumanizing and self-indulgent effects of pornography on our character, conscience and ability to value a person as a person. Because of the power of "political correctness" and the supposed importance of tolerance as a virtue, pornography's' contribution to the decline of our moral standards escapes recognition. However, Americans affirm a desire to control and decrease the use of pornography. At a public hearing, 26 out of 27 witnesses in New York City alone expressed concern and asked for remedial measures. Thankfully society seems to realize the need to abolish pornography.
Prostitution shares many of the attributes of pornography. In addition to its illegality, it also degrades its victims. Desperate young girls see a glamorous job opportunity to earn a minimum of $200 a night, when actually they give most of their earnings to their pimp who could care less for the well being of the girl. Often the girls end up with 5% of their total earnings. Prostitution, a very physically punishing business, regards women over 30 as too old, "used up" and with no market value. In two thousand interviews conducted over the years for the book The Lively Commerce, Charles Winick and Paul Kinsis found no more than one hundred older prostitutes who had any money. Also, the illegality of prostitution hinders future job prospects because of numerous police records. The author of Prostitutes Are Oppressed Victims writes "It is a sex act instead of a sexual relationship- and most definitely not the act of free women." Why should women squander their hard-earned freedom, respect and equality by using this freedom to sell themselves as a commodity to be used and then thrown away?
Our traditional sexual values have obviously declined and eroded in today's' society. Instead this should develop as one of our first and foremost priorities that we establish in our lives. In Ephessians 5:3 it says "there must not be a hint of sexual immorality, or any kind of impurity." Going against the rules given by God only plants an unwanted feeling of apprehension, suspicion, hurt and depression. As a society, we need to take sexual values to a new level of importance, appreciation and respect.
Word Count: 816