In a letter to Attorney General Bill Barr, four members of Congress have asked him to begin prosecuting obscene pornography with obscenity laws that are already on the books. Reps. Jim Banks (R-IN), Mark Meadows (R-NC), Brian Babin (R-TX), and Vicky Hartzler (R-MO) all signed the letter and explained the harms that widespread pornography use has on society. 

“The explosion in pornography coincides with an increase in violence towards women and an increase in the volume of human trafficking as well as child pornography. Victims are not limited to those directly exploited, however, and include society writ large. This phenomenon is especially harmful to youth, who are being exposed to obscene pornography at exponentially younger ages,” the letter reads.

In addition, the letter makes clear that no new laws need to be passed in order for the creation and distribution of such material to be criminally prosecuted.

“U.S. obscenity laws exist that, if enforced, can ameliorate the problem. Those U.S. laws prohibit distribution of obscene pornography. Yet the enforcement of obscenity laws was stopped by the Obama Administration. It’s our recommendation that you declare the prosecution of obscene pornography a criminal justice priority and urge your U.S. Attorneys to bring prosecutions against the major producers and distributors of such material.”

Rep. Banks explained the purpose behind the letter in a statement to The Daily Citizen

“The Internet and other technologies have helped create an unprecedented era of convenience. But there is a dark side. Anyone connected to the Internet – including children – has on-demand access to billions of photos and videos of people having sex or committing other lewd acts. The prevalence of pornography in our society has consequences, especially for our children. It’s time we start talking about it,” Rep. Banks said.

The anti-porn organization Fight The New Drug (FTND) has compiled stunning statistics into how much pornography is viewed each year. According to FTND, “more than 5,517,748,800 hours of porn were watched on Pornhub (the largest distributer of porn) in just 2018. That’s equal to 629,880 years of content consumed in 1 year, on one porn site.” 

FTND also found that, “In 2017 alone, Pornhub got 28.5 billion visits. That’s almost 1,000 visits a second, or 78.1 million a day – way more than the population of the entire United Kingdom. That number has since jumped to 33.5 billion site visits in 2018.”

The average age of a child’s first exposure to porn is 11 years old. This means that many children are first exposed to pornography at even younger ages.

Despite the widespread viewing of pornography, and the demonstrably negative effects on all involved with it, there has recently been little discussion in the public square about what to do about it.

We tip our hats to Reps. Banks, Meadows, Babin and Hartzler. Bravo for urging the Justice Department to begin tackling a massive problem that many do not have the courage to discuss. 

Additional Resources: 

Resources to Help You Fight Pornography Addition 

Addicted to Pornography 

Helping a Spouse Overcome Addition to Pornography


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