When was the last time you took your kids to the airport and bought some candy and magazines? Did you notice what your kids see at their "short-eye-level" when you pay for your items? They see what they can also notice at many grocery store check-out lines and magazine racks: they see soft porn - half-naked, provocative photos of well-endowed men and women.Now, I'm no prude. I wear jeans below my waist, and I have some belly-button "bling." But I do believe that there ought to be such a thing as a free society maintaining its First Amendment rights, while at the same time jealously protecting the innocence of children.A recent female caller complained that her boyfriend occasionally looked at some photos or videos of naked women on the Internet. It is unbelievable to me that, lately, there is such hysteria about men viewing naked women or male/female sexual encounters. Did somebody just discover that men are very interested in sex and are visually stimulated by viewing women's bodies?Of course, Internet porn can be a problem, particularly when it becomes compulsive and a substitute for real-life intimacy, or self-medication for emotional problems. However, much of the time, it is just a curious male having a stimulating moment.I brought up to that caller that I thought the guys who do the workout ads for some of those exercise machines are "hunks," and exciting to see. She agreed. If all I did was play a continuous loop of these ads, I'd be having a serious emotional problem. There is a
difference between "casual," and "compulsive."That said, our society has a big problem making "crass" more casual in the public square. The fashion police should arrest most of those young women with big bellies and big butts hanging over those ridiculously low-cut, tight jeans, and short, too-tight tops, as well as young men with no tops, and with their pants falling just at or below their pubic hair line. Their parents either don't care, or have given up attempting to be leaders, or have joined the ranks of the "crass" themselves.This society should shun malls that harbor Victoria's Secret, Abercrombie & Fitch, and Frederick's of Hollywood, as these are establishments which use provocative photos and displays to promote their products within clear view of families and children walking through the malls. I mean, there you are with your adolescent sons and daughters, looking up at practically naked women and men in their underwear, with seductive looks in their eyes. What are you supposed to say to your children about that?These images tell your children that sexuality, nudity, their bodies, and intimacy are just "everyday stuff" - no big deal, certainly not private, and definitely not special. Is that the lesson you want them to learn?One mother of a 12 year old boy wrote to me that after they came home from their town's mall in which they personally experienced all of the stuff I've just mentioned, he suggested that they should do their shopping online from now on.Not a bad idea.