What's wrong with porn?
Well this question, surprisingly, is a lot more ambiguous than most people would realize. A lot of old-time Catholics would probably answer, "of course pornography is wrong," while the reality is, MANY people, particularly men, surf pornography on the internet frequently, and think nothing of it.
They would argue, quite often, that the people (usually young girls) who perform various sexual acts on the internet are getting paid very well, are doing so freely, are over 18 (although I'm not so sure about that), and are therefore empowered. Many young people in the porn industry think that they are empowered themselves as a matter of fact, controlling others with their sexual power, and making tons of money in the process.
But the reality is, as in the case of prostitutes, porn stars are paid good money to allow themselves to be turned into sex objects. And OBJECTIFICATION is the problem in pornography.
Human sexuality is a gift from God - in fact its a sacred thing, in which we, through our intimacy and procreativity, are meant and called to have an encounter with God. God is present in human sexuality. This is why we have a ritual that celebrates sexuality - its called "a wedding."
Porn, particularly internet porn, erases that sacredness, that privateness, that intimacy, that LOVE, that is intended to be present in sexuality. It is incredibly psychologically damaging on those who allow themselves to be objectified by it. They learn to view themselves as only valuable as sex objects; they grow to believe that they have no other value. Believing the lie, they often regress into deeper and deeper levels of self-degrading behavior, particularly as they age.
And not only that, porn portrays sexuality in a completely exaggerated and unrealistic way, undermining and demeaning genuine experiences of sexuality. Husbands become disatisfied with their wives, and the fact that they can't realize the absurd ideal set by pornography. As such porn leads to the destruction of their relationships.
Not only that, men who indulge in porn develop a warped and degrading view of sexuality and women in general. They grow to regard sex as a form of entertainment, and women as "boy-toys", whose sole purpose is to please men. Men fantasize about women who will act as "love slaves" catering to their men's every want and desire, rather than about women as they ACTUALLY are, dynamic, exciting, unpredicable. Porn teaches men that sex is about power and submission and SELF-gratification, rather than the sharing of mutual love and intimacy. As such they miss out on what sexuality COULD be, is INTENDED to be, if they had the patience, and if they got over themselves.
When people, particularly men, ask me about porn, my answer is usually a quick one: imagine that the girl on your screen was your daughter. That usually sobers them up pretty quick, and helps them to click their mouse away from the porn, and go check out the latest Star Trek news or ESPN stats instead.