Public Health Crisis Rhetoric

In the past few years, politicians and moralists have been sounding alarms about a supposed “public health crisis” resulting from the scourge internet pornography. The only problem? The data doesn’t back it up. But that hasn’t stopped state legislatures from passing numerous resolutions, or the Republican Party introducing the language into their platform, or President Trump from signing a pledge promising to eradicate it.

Across the country, in state legislators and in party platforms, politicians have introduced resolutions and pledges declaring internet pornography a public health crisis. It is not grounded and fact, and is already being used as a pretext to get around First Amendment restrictions on adult entertainment.

No reputable, science-based public health organization has labeled pornography a public health crisis. Not the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the National Institutes of Health, the American Medical Association, the American Academy of Pediatrics, or any state health department.

For religious conservatives, anti-sex legislators, and anti-porn censors, the rise in accessibility of adult material, coupled with a conservative political moment, has become a cause for action. They claim that this access to porn will result in more sexual assault, destroy marriages, and contribute to a myriad of other social ills, from sexual dysfunction to homosexuality.

Ironically, over the past two decades, the same period in which adult content thrived, sex crimes, including sexual assault plunged (even as reporting has gone up). The divorce rate is at a thirty-five-year low. Teen pregnancy is rarer than it has been in the past fifty years. The anti-porn activists may paint a picture of a world out of control, but the facts doesn’t support it. What the data shows instead is that men who watch porn are more likely to agree with feminist principles, to have better sex lives, and greater tolerance for sexual diversity.

The true public health crisis is the lack of adequate, science-based sexual health education in United States, perpetuated by socially conservative politicians like these for over 35 years. This has led to unbelievably high STI and HIV infection rates amongst our young, as well as a teenage pregnancy rate of 26 per 1000 in the USA vs 6 per 1000 in Europe. Regressive policies like this will achieve nothing.

That’s why we’re making sure the Free Speech Coalition is the leading voice against morals-based initiatives, and working with health departments and medical associations to discuss the facts around sex and sexuality in a clear, reasoned, fact-based manner. Because a health policy based in outdated morality isn’t just bad for the adult industry, it’s bad for public health.


GOP platform

Proponent GOP

See Section 6: Ensuring Safe Neighborhoods: Criminal Justice and Prison Reform

View the GOP Platform Manifest here

Alabama HJR 201

Proponent Rep. Jack Williams [R]

Introduced March 16, 2017

View the Resolution here

Alabama HJR 166

Proponent Rep. Arnold Mooney [R]

Introduced March 9, 2017

View the Resolution here

Arkansas HR 1042

Proponent Rep. Karilyn Brown [R]

Introduced March 14, 2017

View the Resolution here

Hawaii HR 113

Proponent Rep. Andria Tupola [R], Rep. Tom Brower [D], Rep. Romy Cachola [D], Rep. Richard Creagan [D],
Rep. Lynn Decoite [D], Rep. Bertrand Kobayashi [D], Rep. Sam Kong [D], Rep. Lauren Matsumoto [R],
Rep. John Mizuno [D], Rep. Calvin Say [D], Rep. Cindy Evans [D], Rep. Marcus Oshiro [D],
Rep. Joy San Buenaventura [D], Rep. Gene Ward [R]

Introduced March 14, 2017

View the Resolution here

Kansas SR 1723

Proponent Sen. Mary Pilcher-Cook [R], Sen. Larry Alley [R], Sen. Molly Baumgardner [R], Sen. Edward Berger [R],
Sen. Richard Billinger [R], Sen. Barbara Bollier [R], Sen. Elaine Bowers [R], Sen. Jim Denning [R],
Sen. John Doll [R], Sen. Bud Estes [R], Sen. Oletha Faust-Goudeau [D], Sen. Steve Fitzgerald [R],
Sen. Bruce Givens [R], Sen. Dan Goddard [R], Sen. Tom Hawk [D], Sen. Dan Kerschen [R],
Sen. Jacob LaTurner [R], Sen. Julia Lynn [R], Sen. Ty Masterson [R], Sen. Robert Olson [R],
Sen. Mike Petersen [R], Sen. Dennis Pyle [R], Sen. Gene Suellentrop [R], Sen. Dinah Sykes [R],
Sen. Mary Taylor [R], Sen. Caryn Tyson [R], Sen. Susan Wagle [R], Sen. Richard Wilborn [R],

Introduced March 14, 2017

View the Resolution here

Kansas HR 6016

Proponent Rep. Susan Humphries [R], Rep. Douglas Blex [R], Rep. Shelee Brim [R], Rep. Dave Crum [R],
Rep. Roger Elliott [R], Rep. Randy Garber [R], Rep. Ron Highland [R], Rep. Trevor Jacobs [R],
Rep. Monica Murnan [D], Rep. Leslie Osterman [R], Rep. Randy Powell [R], Rep. Abraham Rafie [R],
Rep. John Resman [R], Rep. Adam Smith [R], Rep. Eric Smith [R], Rep. Bill Sutton [R],
Rep. Brian Weber [R], Rep. John Whitmer [R], Rep. Kristey Williams [R], Rep. John Wilson [D]

Introduced March 8, 2017

View the Resolution here

Minnesota SB 1605

Proponent Sen. Michelle Benson [R], Sen. John Hoffman [D]

Introduced March 1, 2017

View the Resolution here

Minnesota HB 1788

Proponent Rep. Tim Miller [R] Rep. Dave Pinto [D] Rep. Kathy Lohmer [R] Rep. Jeff Backer [R]
Rep. Matthew Dean [R] Rep. Peggy Bennett [R] Rep. John Poston [R] Rep. Joshua Heintzeman [R]
Rep. Cindy Pugh [R] Rep. Bob Dettmer [R] Rep. Jim Nash [R] Rep. Glenn Gruenhagen [R]
Rep. Sondra Erickson [R] Rep. Abigail Whelan [R] Rep. Linda Slocum [D] Rep. Mary Murphy [D]
Rep. Ilhan Omar [D] Rep. Peggy Scott [R] Rep. Roz Peterson [R]

Introduced March 23, 2017

View the Resolution here

Missouri HCR 38

Proponent Rep. Nathan Beard [R]

Introduced February 28, 2017

View the Resolution here

West Virginia SCR 29

Proponent Sen. Patricia Rucker [R] Sen. Mike Azinger [R] Sen. Craig Blair [R] Sen. Donna Boley [R]
Sen. Charles Clements [R] Sen. Ed Gaunch [R] Sen. Robert Karnes [R] Sen. Kenny Mann [R]
Sen. Michael Maroney [R] Sen. Mark Maynard [R] Sen. Jeffrey Mullins [R] Sen. Randy Smith [R]

Introduced March 9, 2017

View the Resolution here

Utah SCR 9

Proponent Sen. Peter Knudson [R] Rep. Marie Poulson [D]

Introduced March 21, 2017

View the Resolution here

Texas HR 112

Proponent Rep. Jeff Leach [R]

Introduced January 17, 2017

View the Resolution here

South Carolina HCR 3887

Proponent Rep. James Burns [R] Rep. William Chumley [R] Rep. Anne Thayer [R]

Introduced March 2, 2017

View the Resolution here

South Dakota SCR 4

Proponent Sen. Jenna Netherton [R] Sen. Jim Bolin [R] Sen. Bob Ewing [R] Sen. Jason Frerichs [D]
Sen. Brock Greenfield [R] Sen. Jeffrey Haverly [R] Sen. Phil Jensen [R] Sen. Joshua Klumb [R]
Sen. Jack Kolbeck [R] Sen. Ryan Maher [R] Sen. Jeff Monroe [R] Sen. Thomas Nelson [R]
Sen. Al Novstrup [R] Sen. Arthur Rusch [R] Sen. Jim Stalzer [R] Sen. Jim White [R]
Rep. Taffy Howard [R] Rep. Arch Beal [R] Rep. Thomas Brunner [R] Rep. Blaine Campbell [R]
Rep. Roger Chase [R] Rep. Michael Clark [R] Rep. Drew Dennert [R] Rep. Lynn Disanto [R]
Rep. Julie Frye-mueller [R] Rep. Bob Glanzer [R] Rep. Timothy Goodwin [R] Rep. Brian Gosch [R]
Sen. Jenna Netherton [R] Rep. Steven Haugaard [R] Rep. Spencer Hawley [D] Rep. Leslie Heinemann [R]
Rep. Kevin Jensen [R] Rep. David Johnson [R] Rep. Dan Kaiser [R] Rep. Jason Kettwig [R]
Rep. Isaac Latterell [R] Rep. Oren Lesmeister [D] Rep. Steve Livermont [R] Rep. Sam Marty [R]
Rep. Sean Mcpherson [R] Rep. Tom Pischke [R] Rep. Nancy Rasmussen [R] Rep. Larry Rhoden [R]
Rep. Tim Rounds [R] Rep. James Schaefer [R] Rep. Wayne Steinhauer [R] Rep. Burt Tulson [R]
Rep. Mark Willadsen [R] Rep. Nancy York [R]

Introduced January 31, 2017

View the Resolution here

Oklahoma HCR 1002

Proponent Rep. Travis Dunlap [R]

Introduced February 6, 2017

View the Resolution here

Georgia HR 447

Proponent Rep. Paulette Braddock [R] Rep. Dominic Lariccia [R] Rep. Jan Jones [R] Rep. Scott Hilton [R]
Rep. Jason Spencer [R] Rep. Joyce Chandler [R]

Introduced February 28, 2017

View the Resolution here


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