A Columbia man says his pornography addiction led him to become suicidal in 1992. Art Dyer, a chaplain at the MU Health Center in Columbia, says he supports a proposed Missouri Senate resolution that would declare pornography as a public health crisis.
“I had a secret addiction to pornography, which my wife did not know about. But, the secret life created such conflict within me that I became discouraged,” says Dyer. “It was only through talking to her, working it out and a lot of counseling, a lot of therapy, that I was able to deal with my addiction.”
For the past seven years, Dyer has been working to help those to come out of sexual addiction. He says he’s amazed at how many young people who are having relationship difficulties with the women in their lives because of pornography.
Bev Ehlen with Concerned Women for America of Missouri says she supports the resolution that would also acknowledge the need for education, prevention and policy changes about pornography.
“It’s not your grandpa’s Playboy or detective magazine with the onslaught of internet pornography,” she says.
Ehlen goes on to say 20% of pornography is child rape.
Heather Sparks of eastern Missouri’s St. Charles County says pornography is used as a training manual for sex trafficking.
“Traffickers and sex-spirers get ideas from porn and make their victims watch as a way of showing them what they’ll be expected to do,” Sparks says.
No one spoke in opposition to the resolution that contends pornography perpetuates “a sexually toxic environment” and contributes “to the hypersexualization of teenagers and children before they hit puberty. The measure is sponsored by Sen. Ed Emery, R-Lamar.