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Disturbing: American Approval of Pornography, Pre-Marital Sex Hit All-Time High

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A near-majority of Americans find pornography morally acceptable and a similar percentage think that sex as a teenager is also morally acceptable, new polls from Gallup show.

According to Gallup, these are the highest approval numbers for either one during the history of the poll.

The polls, released last week, show that 43 percent of adults think that pornography is morally acceptable. That’s “a seven-percentage-point increase from last year and the highest level since Gallup first began measuring moral perceptions of pornography in 2011.”

“From 2011 onward, notable shifts in opinion are apparent for actions such as doctor-assisted suicide, gay/lesbian relations, sex between unmarried people and having a baby out of wedlock,” Gallup noted.

“Until this year, though, Americans’ perceptions regarding the morality of pornography have changed at a more modest rate than these other issues. From 2011 to 2017, the percentage of Americans who find pornography morally acceptable rose by six points, whereas Americans’ opinions on those other issues changed by an average of nine points.”

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That increase was mirrored by the rise in the number of individuals who thought that pre-marital sex was morally acceptable during the teenage years, with 42 percent saying they thought it was moral.

Gallup reported on that question “the percentage who find it acceptable has grown by 10 percentage points since Gallup first polled on the question in 2013, including a six-point increase in the past year.”

Fifty-four percent still felt that sex during the teenage years was morally unacceptable, although this is far from the biggest spread in the poll’s history.

Back in 2014, for instance, 64 percent said it was morally unacceptable versus only 30 percent who found it morally acceptable.

Do you think these numbers are alarming?

The numbers on that poll have, however, been all over the place since they first started being recorded back in 2014. The same can’t be said for the numbers on pornography.

When the poll started in 2011, 30 percent found it was morally acceptable. That increased slowly but steadily to 34 percent by 2016.

In the past two years alone, however, acceptance has grown nine points, to 43 percent.

That number is rising faster among Democrats, a majority of whom now find it to be acceptable. Last year, that number was 42 percent. It jumped 11 points this year to 53 percent.

While only 27 percent of Republicans found pornography to be morally acceptable, that’s still up 11 points from where it was in 2016, when 16 percent found it morally permissible.

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Surprisingly, this is as we’re becoming more and more aware of health issues regarding pornography. Five states have recognized it as a public health crisis and even an op-ed in The New York Times has noted that the mechanized industry it’s currently become doesn’t lead to healthy outcomes for anyone.

As for pre-marital sex, we’re starting to realize that when sex education doesn’t happen at home but with politically correct educators or online with porn, things can go drastically wrong — especially in the pregnancy or STD department. Perhaps we should take solace that today’s teens are actually having less sex, but our children model our behavior. When 43 percent of us believe that pornography is at the very least amoral, if not a morally sound choice, it doesn’t bode well for what the next generation is thinking.

The saddest thing to come out of these numbers is the quantitatively low value we place on human sexuality. When people say that pornography or premarital sex is okay, what they’re saying is that they have low standards for people’s behavior.

The fact that we’re even asking these questions proves that, at some level, we know there’s something deeply devaluing at a human level about premarital sex or assembly line filth. The more we approve of them, the more we prove we don’t value ourselves — or anyone else, for that matter. And as it turns out, we’re depreciating our worth at an alarming clip.

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C. Douglas Golden is a writer who splits his time between the United States and Southeast Asia. Specializing in political commentary and world affairs, he's written for Conservative Tribune and The Western Journal since 2014.
C. Douglas Golden is a writer who splits his time between the United States and Southeast Asia. Specializing in political commentary and world affairs, he's written for Conservative Tribune and The Western Journal since 2014. Aside from politics, he enjoys spending time with his wife, literature (especially British comic novels and modern Japanese lit), indie rock, coffee, Formula One and football (of both American and world varieties).
Birthplace
Morristown, New Jersey
Education
Catholic University of America
Languages Spoken
English, Spanish
Topics of Expertise
American Politics, World Politics, Culture




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