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Sex vs. Violence: Which Would You Choose?

Merc

Problematic Shitlord
V.I.P.
Here's a nice controversial topic inspired by someone I'm sure people are tired of hearing me talk about, George Carlin, who once said, "I'd rather show my children video of two people making love and than two people killing one another." (Paraphrased)

So where do you fall? Two questions.

One, if you had kids, which do you think would be more harmful for them to be exposed to and why? I ask because America has certainly become more sexualized, still maintains a very prude attitude towards the human body and sex in general (in a day and age where court systems try to call teenagers pedophiles for seeing pictures of girls their age nude).

Two, which do you personally find more harmful to society as a whole?

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Personally, being a romantic, I think the heavy Christian and Catholic influence in this country has done more to desensitize us to violence and more to scare us with sexuality. To me it's the primary source of where many Americans find their morals on the subject as the body is frequently treated with a very high amount of shame. TV shows get racy but some things go ridiculously far in terms of censoring while violence grows exponentially.

Now if you know me, you know I'm the type that has a hard time believing in a lot of media influence. I know it's there, but I focus on the necessity of the human mind in the process. To me, it's a lot easier to explain love and human relationships than the vast majority of reasons we maim and harm one another. Not to mention, it's a common trend that earlier exposure to sexuality (pertaining to things like sexual education) leads to a smarter and less harmed population simply due to information and understanding instilled during and sometimes before sexuality becomes a part of our kids' lives.

But that's just my rambling. What do you think?
 

Major

4 legs good 2 legs bad
V.I.P.
To play a little devil's advocate here, I'm going to say that sex is more influential on a child's or adolescent's mind than violence. I think it's easier to teach a child that violence is wrong at a very young age before they are really even subjected to it.

Sex, on the other hand, is totally different. It's usually portrayed in a very pleasurable manner, something that everyone should want to do. I imagine it's a lot harder for a child to understand what sex is all about and why it's best not to do it until later in life when it's being shown everywhere as the best thing in the world. Also, while sex may not have the immediate direct negative consequences that violence does, teen pregnancies are still a major problem that can have an impact on generations to come.
 

Stegosaurus

Registered Member
(Answers, then explanations)
1. As much as I like to stray from generalizations, my gut leans towards saying that watching killing would be more detrimental than watching fornication.*
2. I’ve witnessed way more riots spontaneously break out than I have orgies. I don’t believe there’s any data to the contrary. I would argue that violence is more detrimental to society as a whole than sex.**

*Of course, it depends upon the genre of porn. I could see how, relatively speaking, a video of hardcore S&M with genital mutilation (even if done so with consent and for “pleasure”) could be more damaging to a child than a Western such as The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance.
**Now, the mob-mentality is powerful in isolated and spontaneous cases, but people show much more discretionary action and critical thinking when just hanging around the T.V. at night.

I’d like to tie this into a Henry Rollins commentary, from his Provoked tour, in which he states that there is a, “sexualization of death” trend. (I’d even argue it’s been present since the dawn of civilization, as evidenced by the juxtaposition of female/male nude characters in violent and often sadistic images/tapestries/paintings/porcelain-stoneware/religious texts etc…)
 

Merc

Problematic Shitlord
V.I.P.
To play a little devil's advocate here, I'm going to say that sex is more influential on a child's or adolescent's mind than violence. I think it's easier to teach a child that violence is wrong at a very young age before they are really even subjected to it.

Sex, on the other hand, is totally different. It's usually portrayed in a very pleasurable manner, something that everyone should want to do. I imagine it's a lot harder for a child to understand what sex is all about and why it's best not to do it until later in life when it's being shown everywhere as the best thing in the world. Also, while sex may not have the immediate direct negative consequences that violence does, teen pregnancies are still a major problem that can have an impact on generations to come.
Well it's more "sexuality" than just sex to be honest.

The act of sex is only part of it. Also, do you believe that them knowing about it earlier on will make them more likely to engage in it? Because I've heard mostly favorable arguments that information is the best preventative measure. Not like they need to be making macaroni pictures of people fucking, but just a general source of information starting in say fifth grade (my school system) to help ease them into this new stage in their lives.
 

Wade8813

Registered Member
I think Echoes brings up a good point - acting out murder is worse than acting out (consensual) sex, but watching them doesn't have the same impact on whether or not you'll do those behaviors (for various reasons).

I’ve witnessed way more riots spontaneously break out than I have orgies. I don’t believe there’s any data to the contrary. I would argue that violence is more detrimental to society as a whole than sex.
Those results are probably skewed by several factors - large groups tend to form because people are angry, not horny; it's easier to become overwhelmingly angry than overwhelmingly horny (especially while everyone around you is dressed); rioting can give people a feeling of getting something done even if it's really counter-productive; etc.
 

shelgarr

Registered Member
Both of them come in a lot of different varieties. Lord of the Rings violence is not crime violence, or horror show violence, or war movie violence, or cowboy shootouts. Sex as well can be boob and up/down sheets, or R, X, XXX porn. Of the two, I would lean toward choosing violence. It seems more abstract than sexuality on TV. Although, Passion of the Christ nauseated me the whole time.

Violence is what I allow the kids to see as well. I see violence as an activity that my kids will not be prone to. It can be explained and something that is away from us. Whereas sex is something they'll experience at some point to some x degree, and that time will come. I don't think they need to witness versions of it earlier than their own readiness.
 

Ilus_Unistus

Registered Member
First, I must say as always Merc a very good question and discussion topic.

Personally, I think sexual activities or sexuality as a whole to society is frowned upon while violence seems to be more "tolerated" in general by society. To me this seems wrong, or incorrect.

Sex or sexuality is something many see as taboo, but in truth it is a lovely thing between consenting adults. If I had to subject my child (if I had a child) to one or the other, it would be sex/sexuality.

Violence is seen everyday, in the news, on the streets or even by the leaders of the world and to many is a part of everyday life. I have seen football games on the TV with people to start riots, people attacking other people and it is tolerated and rarely are charges brought to the people to start it, it is just socially acceptable and something that happens. Fights in hockey games, no charges again and completely acceptable. These I see as wrong, and sending the wrong message to the youth of the world. Violence promotes violence, it is this simple. Sexual actions or sexuality are not violent, until a violent person partakes in it.
 

Stegosaurus

Registered Member
it's easier to become overwhelmingly angry than overwhelmingly horny (especially while everyone around you is dressed); rioting can give people a feeling of getting something done even if it's really counter-productive; etc.
Oh absolutely--no argument there--but it also seems to prove the point that one is more...er..."contagious" than the other? Perhaps? Hmm, well the inherent difficulty is that it is very difficult to quantify "doses/amounts" of exposure of sexuality and violence (how much of one is an equal dose to how much of the other?), and then measure their resulting levels of damage.
 

Major

4 legs good 2 legs bad
V.I.P.
Well it's more "sexuality" than just sex to be honest.

The act of sex is only part of it. Also, do you believe that them knowing about it earlier on will make them more likely to engage in it? Because I've heard mostly favorable arguments that information is the best preventative measure. Not like they need to be making macaroni pictures of people fucking, but just a general source of information starting in say fifth grade (my school system) to help ease them into this new stage in their lives.
The thing is, sex is really difficult, if not impossible, to teach to kids who aren't sexually mature yet. You can teach them the "how" but not the "why." They just can't possibly understand the feelings and the desire involved.

Sex or sexuality is something many see as taboo, but in truth it is a lovely thing between consenting adults. If I had to subject my child (if I had a child) to one or the other, it would be sex/sexuality.
Watching sex makes me horny. Watching violence doesn't fill me with rage and make me want to crack some skulls. Sex isn't always done between consenting adults, and that's where the problem is.
 

Merricles

Registered Member
I don't have to imagine if I had kids, I do haha. Two very young boys and a 14 year old girl. I am not against sex at all, however when it comes to my kids I would rather them watch Rocky beat up Drago or Dom race cars and shoot people then have them watch say, Diane Lane in Unfaithful or Sharon Stone in Sliver. The reason being, you can better teach kids about violence. They are embarrased to talk about sex. So, I can say 'hey son, those arent real bullets, they are just acting' and teach him that it is 'fake' violence. I can't say 'alright, now she is moaning like that with her tits flopping because she is practicing to be the easter bunny' and have him buy it. Next thing ya know, as a 6 year old kid he'll walk up to mom and start giggling her tits.

Everyone has their own thoughts on this, and I am not going to say that someone else is wrong if I don't agree. Violence it seems though is more common place and easier to 'teach' to children than sex is. Not that I don't intend to teach my kids about sex. I also wouldn't want my kids to feel too uncomfortable to sit in the room with Mom and I to watch a movie.
 
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