Media, Children, and the Family: Social Scientific, Psychodynamic, and Clinical Perspectives

By Dolf Zillmann; Jennings Bryant et al. | Go to book overview

20
CHILD PORNOGRAPHY IN EROTIC MAGAZINES, SOCIAL AWARENESS, AND SELF-CENSORSHIP

Judith A. Reisman Institute For Media Education Arlington, Virginia

Although it is understood that accepted scientific research findings can dramatically affect legislative, judicial, and individual conduct, it is less recognized that even hotly contested social-science research findings can also quietly affect changes in conduct by the agents under scrutiny.

The American people are unusual among the world's population for many reasons, one of which is their ability to successfully lobby the extant power structure or businesses for social change. American "special interest" and consumer groups garner funds and political "clout" to protect whales and dolphins, to leverage for their own pro or antireligious views, to urge medical preference for AIDS or breast cancer research, to end or increase privileges for the tobacco, liquor, and marijuana industries, and so on.

The Supreme Court of Canada unanimously ruled in February 1992 that pornography harms women and is generally no longer acceptable in that Northern clime ( New York Times, February 28, 1992, B7). Here in the United States, family rights' groups are joining with other environmental lobbyists to campaign for the strengthening of laws on "second-hand pornography effects" as well as for tougher penalties for sex offenses, illegal drug use, and other criminal acts. Whereas government prosecution and

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