When Pornography Becomes Political: The Implications of Utah’s Proposed Phone Filter Bill

When Pornography Becomes Political: The Implications of Utah’s Proposed Phone Filter Bill


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According to Fight the New Drug, pornography can have a lasting impact on individuals, relationships, and society as a whole. Its addictive nature doesn’t discriminate against any demographic. As a matter of fact, according to Boston University, pornography use is one of the primary indicators of present or future domestic violence according to longitudinal studies, no matter what demographic.

Besides domestic violence, according to the National Institutes of Health, pornography is also linked to sexually aggressive behaviors in adolescents. There are some individuals who have no negative reaction to sexually explicit images, but this is the exception. Women, in particular, have found that when their spouses do enjoy the effects of sexually explicit images, they are more likely to be pressured into sexual behavior which has been seen in those pornographic images.

The internet, however, is exceptionally capable of adaptation. According to Indiana University, international filter laws are nonexistent, mostly due to natural complications with international law. Brazil does not want their cultural concept of modesty to be moralized by the United States, any more than the United States wants their cultural concept of modesty dictated by Iran. Utah, of course, has a stricter cultural concept of modesty than much of the United States and is attempting to pass a bill that will cause all phones sold within the state to come with pornography filters automatically installed. This is a hot button issue, but it should not be.

Utah has a society primarily composed of members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. This society is a proponent of a patriarchally based home culture that teaches specific cultural modesty and sexual rules. Unfortunately, as such, these general doctrines can easily be twisted to pervert a sexual relationship between spouses, including pressure to mimic porn. This is, of course, domestic abuse. The pre-installed applications will not prevent such things. Only specific parity in doctrinal discussions and changing the culture in the home can do that.

Those who want to uninstall will Google how to do so. However, as many sexually explicit images appear after curious, casual questions about things such as slang or practices children have heard about happening, being able to block those things is an added tool that people can use if they are attempting to stay away. While those who are intent upon viewing can disable the installation, and if it is enabled upon purchase, those young eyes who can be most harmed might be protected a few years more.

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