Blog Post

Presidential Candidates Silent on Obscenity Law Enforcement

By Susan Brinkmann, OCDS Staff Writer In spite of the fact that an astounding 75 percent of Americans want the next President to do everything in their power to ensure the vigorous enforcement of obscenity laws, both Presidential candidates have been silent on the issue. “Can it be that John McCain and Barack Obama are more concerned about offending avid consumers of hardcore pornography than they are about the harms that obscenity is causing to our nation and to its communities, families and children?” asks Bob Peters, President of Morality in Media (MIM), a nonprofit organization founded to combat obscenity and enforce standards of decency in the media. “Or perhaps worse,” he adds, “can it be that neither candidate views the explosion of obscenity as a serious moral issue that merits their attention?” In a recent press release, Peters explains that MIM organized a conference in May at the National Press Club, followed by an orderly demonstration at the Justice Department, to call attention to the Department’s failure to enforce federal obscenity laws vigorously. Both John McCain (R-AZ) and Barack Obama (D-IL) were invited to attend the Conference or to send a written statement expressing their views on enforcement of federal obscenity laws. A representative of the McCain Campaign called to say that the Senator could not attend but they hoped to send either Senator Sam Brownback or former Senator Dan Coates. Neither could attend. Another representative of the McCain Campaign called to say a written statement would be forthcoming. No written statement was ever issued.  The Obama Campaign did not respond at all. “After the Conference, follow-up letters were sent to both candidates. Neither candidate has responded to those letters,” Peters writes. “Back where I grew up (and I’m sure elsewhere), folks used to ask, ‘Cat got your tongue?'" These candidates need to address the many serious problems arising as a result of millions of individuals of all ages becoming addicted to viewing hardcore pornography, Peters said.   “Those problems include (among other things) the decline in and break up of marriages, promiscuity, the spread of sexually transmitted diseases, sexual abuse of children, sexual assaults against women, sexual trafficking in women and children, and on the job sexual harassment. The explosion of obscenity also undermines our nation’s efforts to combat religiously based terrorism.” Compared to the Clinton years, the Bush Administration made progress in the war against obscenity, he writes, but the next President must do much more. “The American people deserve two answers to the question, ‘If elected President, will you do all in your power to ensure that federal obscenity laws are enforced vigorously against commercial distributors of hardcore pornography?’ At this point, it is not clear they will get even one.” © All Rights Reserved, Living His Life Abundantly/Women of Grace.