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Porn In Canada Essay

1835 words - 8 pages

During the 1950's there was a social movement against the pornography industry in Canada. Religious and Feminist groups were concerned about the harmful effects regarding the danger and degradation of women. The opposition to this movement was that pornography was a freedom of expression and sexual orientation. This brought about many political debates and controversies about what is ethically right and what is a personal freedom. This created many problems for the Canadian government on how to legislate pornography and up hold the Common Rights of Canada.
First Legislation on Obscenity and Criminal Law
In 1959 the Canadian government passed the first law regarding obscenity after a ...view middle of the document...

Some of the Feminist leaders in North America said that current laws interpret text in such a way that the government ignores the realities of women's lives. In other words, the Feminist group says, the law is too subjective and it must be thrown out and a completely new law be instated that will do away with pornography completely. In order for women to change this law they would have to prove that men who consume pornography also behave in this way by degrading and dehumanizing women. At this point in time there was no evidence supporting that if a man watched pornography that he was going use violence or demeaning behavior towards women. The other side of this argument is that pornography is the reality of sex and that it is a normal practice of sexuality. Pornography is some thing that both men and women enjoy and is used to shape their own human sexuality. It could be argued that the laws in a free society cannot limit or take away the right to read or watch something unless it is proven to harm another human being. It is the freedom of press that allows pornography to remain legal in North America.

Conservative Stance
Another group that had an opinion on this matter was the conservative religious groups. They argued that pornography was a danger to marriage and good moral values. These religious groups believe that sex is a gift from God and should only be between a man and his wife. However, conservatives did agree with the Feminist Against Censorship on the fact that sex does not degrade or dehumanize women when practiced in the right context. Sex is something that is equally shared between a man and women. The religious groups were fighting to protect what was given as a gift from God and not for it to be abused as entertainment for the public eye.
Mobilization of Science: Fact vs. Morality
Both Feminist and Conservatives joined forces to censor pornography on the basis that it degrades sex and oppresses women. In the late 1980's R.E.A.L Women of Canada stated that "scientific research was now available and that it unequivocally demonstrates the harm and danger that sexually explicit material inflicts on women and society in general." A 1987 study indicated that viewing sexually explicit material causes a loss of respect for women and dehumanizes them in the process…In addition the viewing of sexually explicit material leads to an addiction for such material and an increased desire for even stronger material" (R.E.A.L Women of Canada, 1987.5 (1) Reality).
Conservatives also agreed with the Feminist group on scientific evidence. Through the help of scientific research it was proven that men exposed to pornography lack the ability to maintain a committed relationship. This problem stems from the attitude men are dominate and sex is only for pleasure and not an expression of love. Conservative groups felt strongly about this being a health hazard for men addicted to pornography and it is a great danger to family...

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