According to the Christian Post, Christian anti-adult content activists are expressing concern about dealing with the effects of adult content on their children.
Due to the ubiquity of smartphones, the up-and-coming generation has been “raised on hardcore porn to a level that’s never been seen before,” and there will be a massive “reckoning” within the Church if the Body of Christ fails to address this issue, the head of an addiction recovery program has warned.
“We may think that the porn situation is bad now, as we’re seeing pastors like Ravi Zacharias come out, but this younger generation has been raised on hardcore porn to a level that we’ve never seen before,” Ted Shimer, founder of The Freedom Fight, an online addiction recovery program, told The Christian Post.
“The Bible tells us that we’re going to reap what we sow. Those of us who work with college students, we’re seeing porn addiction like never before. These are our future Christian parents, mothers, fathers, church leaders. If the church doesn’t deal with it, there’s going to be a massive reckoning that is unfortunately not going to look well on the name of Christ.”
Shimer, who has mentored young adults for nearly three decades with the collegiate ministry Student Mobilization, said the rise in porn addiction is directly related to accessibility to technology. In 2007 — the year the iPhone came out — Shimer and his wife and ministry partner noticed a significant increase in porn addiction among young people.
“We really identified pornography and addiction to it as the single biggest obstacle to our vision and mission of building spiritual leaders for Christ,” he said. “So in 2007 is when we really took a deep dive into this topic.”
Shimer revealed that he’s heard firsthand accounts of children — both boys and girls — becoming addicted to pornography as early as seventh grade.
“When a mom hands her seventh grader an iPhone, she’s not realizing she’s handing her child 24/7 access to pornography,” he said. “And yet, that’s what’s happening. It’s the private access at such young ages that’s really the driver behind why we’re seeing so many young people with such deep addictions. It’s getting worse every year. It’s a massive, massive issue.”
“This is such a massive issue in the church, and we need more people who understand it and are equipped to help others break free. Because this next generation of believers that are going to be entering the church — I promise this is going to be a huge issue in their discipleship. If we haven’t been equipped to address this effectively, we’re going to be offering shallow and ineffective solutions.” (source)
Stories such as these are about as pleasant to read as rubbing one’s hand repeatedly on a cheese grater, and not because of the nature of the story, but the “head-in-the-sand” mentality that continues to define and as a result o this, contribute to the decline of Christianity in public life.
Hardcore porn falling in mass into young people’s hands is at this point a DECADES old problem. If you had Internet in 1995, when it really first went public, even the most innocuous of key words on a major search would get extremely explicit results. I say this from experience when my own sibling went to search for “kitty” because she loved kittens and cats with our parents and sure enough, we got a lesson in human biology that my parents quickly dealt with.
Seriously, the proliferation of adult content is a cancer but if you have been paying attention- which seemingly a great number of ‘pastors’ and parents have not been at all -that garbage is everywhere. It is so bad that as a parent, if you do not discuss it with your children at an early age and make plans to deal with inevitable exposure to it, you are setting yourself up to fail and inadvertently hurt your own kids.
It is one thing for Boomers to be confused about what happened because in truth, the world changed fast. However, adaptation and a failure to do this is not an excuse. Gen X has even less of an excuse because they had more experience in the tech world. Millennials have absolutely no excuse, and neither do Zoomers, because they grew up IN that world and know from experience, and they cannot claim ignorance at all unless they were living on a remote island or jungle village cut off from civilization.
Another problem with this constant complaining about adult content is the unwillingness to do something comprehensive about it. One can get creative in his own mind, but for starters and as referenced above, how about treating adult content like illegal drugs or child abusers looking to abduct and abuse children, and treating it like the predatory issue that it is from the viewpoint of a parent? What about limiting Internet time, helping direct activities in a non-helicopter parent way, or, something that may be very abnormal for so many American parents, actually spending time with your child directly in a way that involves personal communication and being an actual parent, sharing experiences with your children and helping to comprehensively form them?
Trying to avoid adult content in today’s world is foolish, and I am not saying “look at this” but rather that one must be in touch with reality. Instead of trying to hide from problems, one must help children learn to deal with them. This lesson is as old as time, for even the pagan Siddharta Gautama, the founder of Buddhism, experienced an existential crisis when he saw a poor person by accident for the first time, as the story goes that his father always tried to hide him from seeing poor people because he did not want his son to see how difficult life can be.
The mere existence of such content is proof of the reality of a fallen world. One does not unnecessarily expose oneself to it, but to leave one unprepared and not aware of and how to deal with it is also a form of mistreatment as experience helps with formation. One can read about pushups, but doing pushups makes one a strong person.
The same can be said here. Instead of bewailing the heathenry of society, one might want to instead prepare one’s children to face it, to be honest about the state of affairs, and see things for what they are, as that is usually the best way to face anything, and if Christianity is going to mean seeking and pursuing the sublime and not nationalistic impulses or personal goals, then Christians must deal in reality, no matter how good or ugly it is.