4 ways porn changes us

Several days ago as I was driving to a meeting, a segment on NPR caught my attention. It was a thought-provoking piece, and I’ve been thinking about it ever since. They were discussing the prevalence of pornography and its impact on individuals and on our culture as a whole.

In the intro, All Things Considered host Ailsa Chang reported that PornHub, the largest free porn site, has over 100,000,000 visits a day, mostly from Americans under the age of 34 — people who have always had easy access to porn.

As a longtime pastor and counselor, I’ve seen the destructive nature of pornography up close. I’ve had friends and colleagues lose their families and their ministries because of their own personal struggles with porn. I’ve struggled with temptation myself, more often than I’d like to admit. And I know I’m not alone. Pornography is a daily temptation for millions of men and women of all ages and backgrounds.

People get involved with pornography for all kinds of reasons: curiosity, comparison, fantasy, escape, shame, compulsive thoughts, and sexual abuse, just to name a few. According to Webroot Cybersecurity, some 40 million Americans regularly visit porn sites. And they watch a lot of internet porn. Consider these stats:

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Change is hard

Sometimes even the simplest changes can be hard to take. For example, many users were frustrated by Facebook’s recent roll-out of a newly redesigned app that was missing the trademark blue borders. We get annoyed when our grocery stores move products to a whole other aisle or section. We get exasperated when our bank scales back drive-through services in order to force us to navigate online banking. That very thing has happened in recent weeks to some people I know.

Well, for listeners of NPR’s long-standing morning show, it was a change in the program’s theme music that caused some disorientation for many on Monday morning.

Since its inception in 1979, this theme had been part of the morning routine:

But this week listeners were greeted with this instead:

While producers and anchors had teased the change last week, most listeners didn’t take note until, well, the first notes were played.

“It’s so generic. The old music was distinctive,” one listener tweeted.

“Don’t fix what ain’t broke,” another chimed in.

One person required more characters to express his dismay: “It is just terrible. Simply awful. Gross even. Please…..Please. As much as I love Morning Edition, it’s going to make it very difficult to listen.”

Other listeners had positive things to say, but as with most such situations, the negatives seem louder and more numerous.

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