demonstration

From my Soc 119 blog in response to an article about Tea Party protests:

When I see pictures of protesters holding signs that read “Marxism is an Obama-Nation” or that feature “Undocumented Worker” as the caption to a photo of our president, I’m irritated because these people are obviously irrational, yet still receive enough attention by the media to grow their following. I say irrational because if you’ve received even the least extensive primary education our country can offer, you’d know that our President may not be born elsewhere than in the United States. So saying that he’s undocumented is ridiculous. And frankly, what good is a sign like that going to accomplish? 

But I noticed it again on our campus last night. Outside of Eisenhower Auditorium, before the doors open for an event called Porn Nation, I noticed two people holding signs that read “Filth Not Faith”. Porn Nation is a presentation by recovering Porn addict Michael Leahy that’s been given at over 170 campuses nationwide about the way in which pornography (defined as “creative activity (writing or pictures or films etc.) of no literary or artistic value other than to stimulate sexual desire” http://wordnetweb.princeton.edu/perl/webwn?s=porn… )has shaped our culture and our expectations of relationships today. For me, I’ve always understood that Pornography is harmful to relationships and individuals too, so naturally I was curious to learn why these two felt the need to protest Mr. Leahy’s talk. Among other points, they made the claim that sex is natural and that sexual freedom is good, and as quoted in the Daily Collegian this morning, that “nations which have greater access to porn have lower rates of rape and pedophilia.” (http://www.collegian.psu.edu/archive/2010/03/25/g… 

Later, during the Q and A, about a dozen students lined up to voice their frustrations with Mr. Leahy relating his argument more to personal testimony rather than statistical evidence. So I wondered; those two kids sitting outside -what evidence is there to indicate that rape is less common in the west because we have access to porn? There isn’t any; those two subjects may be true, but more likely, we have less incidence of rape (or reported rape) here than in Somalia because as a developed nation, along with having widespread access to the internet (and pornography), we also have better law enforcement. 

When I talked to them I asked them if they would be coming inside to listen to talk themselves. They didn’t think it was necessary; they were informed enough. 

The reason I’m frustrated is because Penn State students (we’re rational, right?) chose to attend Mr. Leahy’s talk with the sole intention to undermine it, not to be informed. For them, they already know what’s right and what’s natural. But the reality is that we’re 20 year old kids; how much experience do any of us really have? I’d argue not more than our professors or our parents.


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