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Protecting Our Children

Parents can Inadvertently Set up Youth for a Porn Problem

By JoAnn Hamilton
August 4, 2006

I don't think any parent would knowingly set up their youth for a pornography problem, but I get concerned that they will fail to protect their children from the initial introduction to pornography because they really don't understand four areas of concern.


These ideas were presented by Dr. John Harmer, chairman of The Lighted Candle Society, in a recent newsletter.  


First Dr. Harmer expresses his concern that parents simply don't take the time to know what is going on in the lives of their children. He uses the example of a nine-year-old given a school assignment to do research in an area that elicited inappropriate information and images. The good element is that the girl immediately told her mother. The bad element is that she saw a pornographic photograph that created an irreversible image in her brain.


Second, Dr. Harmer states: "Parents are woefully ignorant of the subtlety with which pornography is being marketed to their children." He tells how a mother gave her six-year-old a coloring book titled "Your Favorite MTV Stars" while they were sitting in a church meeting. So what is happening here is that "a well meaning but pathetically naïve mother handed her six-year-old daughter a coloring book which contained glamorized sketches of the female stars who every day are singing about illicit sex, drugs, carnal mayhem and lesbianism."


Third: "Parents willingly accept pornography in their own choice of entertainment because it is often camouflaged in humor. Recently, a motion picture patron recited her experience in attending a newly released motion picture with the comment: ‘We should have walked out, the language was so foul, but the show was absolutely hilarious.'" When parents compromise, children become confused.


Fourth: "Adults are desensitized to sexually explicit materials because it is all about them. T hey don't realize what is happening in the mind of a child when that same material is placed before them. Dr. Harmer uses the example of a 12-year-old in a supermarket checkout line reading the cover of Cosmopolitan Magazine mentioning "10 Ways to drive Your Man Wild in Bed." The woman on the cover was anything but overdressed.  


With the above-mentioned problems in mind, what can we parents do?


•  The daily involvement of parents in the lives of their children is very effective in protecting them from the tragedy of permissive sexual activity.


•  Parents need to analyze where and how their children's values are being formed.


•  Be aware that so-called sex education classes in public schools frequently utilize graphic representations of sexual conduct.


•  Wise parents employ tight rules regarding children's viewing of television and movies.


•  Go to your children's schools and personally review the materials your children are studying.


•  Discuss very specific standards of right and wrong with your children.


•  Install a good filter system on your computer. Keep computers located in common areas of the home. Never allow your children to have a computer in their rooms.


•  Ask managers of stores to cover inappropriate magazines, and thank those who are doing so.


These strategies will go a long way in protecting your children.



For information on how to protect your children see www.strengthenthefamily.net

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