(Ways Language Minimize Victimization)
Earlier this week I had a conversation with a man I’ve gotten to know over the last year by reading his posts and watching his videos. Listening to him, it’s clear he has a heart for the vulnerable. His name is Kyle J. Howard and we soon realized a mutual frustration with the way certain words are used.
Our conversation centered on the misuse of the term, “child porn”. It got me thinking that some clarity is needed.
The arrangement of these words disgusts me on so many of levels, but I will begin with this… “child porn” is not pornography, it is the RAPE of a child!
To label video/images as “porn”, implies that there is a consensual and transactional interaction. Such as an adult man or woman receiving payment to permit their bodies be recorded and viewed by other adults in consensual sexual activities.
If you ask most any adult in the US, “what is pornography?” you’d probably get this type of response; “when 2 or more consenting adults agree to be paid for having sex on camera.”
And because most Americans view pornography as a mutual, consensual transaction; maintaining the word “porn” in front of the word “child” leaves the message to our brains, subconscious or otherwise, that it is not “that bad.”
Or many take the view, well I’m not doing it, I’m just watching it.
To do this, is an attempt to use language to lessen or soften the actual effects of this crime. And that is what the sexual exploitation of children is…a CRIME!
To record a child being molested and/or raped is not consensual!
To view a child being molested and/or raped is not a victimless crime!
To view this crime, YOU YOURSELF might as well be the one raping the child. Because that is what you are doing. You are re-victimizing that child OVER AND OVER AGAIN!
So let me say this as plain as I can. To record or view the video or images of children being sexually molested and/or raped is not just watching “porn”…you are another one of this child’s rapist!
And as Kyle Howard points out, “Pornography is largely made up of sex trafficked women. Porn itself makes one an enabler of sexual assault, sex slavery, and the like…we need to redefine how we see/understand porn entirely.”
He goes on to say, “I can’t think of a time where I haven’t referred to child porn as “child rape”. In discussion & teaching, I always refer to child porn as “child rape” in some way.”
So PLEASE stop calling it “child porn”. Its child sexually exploitive videos/images.
Language is the greatest tool we have for connecting with people. Therefore, precision with language is essential. Inaccurate words not only sow misunderstanding but also dehumanize.
Language matters and the way we use words is important.
Language shapes our responses to sexual violence.
In a recent article addressing how language matters in our responses to sexual violence, discusses how words that are used to describe sexual assault can “linguistically blur rape with healthy consensual sex”(p. 11).
For example, Attorney Claudia Bayliff observes that stating that the child “performed oral sex” sounds like a voluntary act, one of mutuality, as opposed to the man “forced his penis in her mouth.” Those two constructions create dramatically different word pictures.
In addition, euphemisms such as “child pornography” or “kiddie porn” minimize the violence inherent in such acts. 1
All of us need to be incredibly careful not to use the language of consensual sex when we are describing a sexual assault.
Don’t believe me? Do you believe we are exaggerating? Why then have we stopped using certain words?
Why do we use the term “little person”, rather than the word “midget”? Ask any African-American in the USA what they think of the “N” word. A word so offensive that it won’t be completed in respectful society.
Why do we use one of the LGBTQIA designations, rather than the word “faggot”? Or ask a person with a developmental disability what they think of the word “retarded”. Are you beginning to see the point?
It’s because those words harm.
That is the point of this article. When you use the word “porn”, you diminish the effects of a crime against a child. It’s harmful and hateful.
So what is the answer? How do we correct this? Claudia Bayliff gives us some concrete, simple directions:
- Avoid using the language of consensual sex to describe assaultive acts.
- Use accountable language that places responsibility on the person committing the criminal acts.
- Help educate others about the importance of using accountable, accurate language when talking about sexual violence.
And please, stop calling it child porn!
Copyright © 2020 Together We Heal, Inc.
1) Journal of Forensic Nursing, “Patient, Victim, or
Survivor: Does Language Matter? A Conversation
with Claudia Bayliff”
April/June 2015, Volume :11 Number 2, page 63 – 65
2) Cooper C. L. How language reflects our response
to sexual violence. Perspectives, 23 (3), 10-11. (2015)
3) Janet Bavelas & Linda Coates, Is it Sex or Assault? Erotic
Versus Violent Language in Sexual Assault Trial
Judgments, 10 J. Soc. Distress & Homeless 29 (2001).
4) James C. McKinley, Vicious Assault Shakes Texas Town,
N.Y. Times, Mar. 8, 2011, at A13.
5) Jackson Katz, DSK’s Alleged Victim Should Not Be Called His “Accuser,” Huffington Post (Aug. 20, 2011), http://www.huffingtonpost.com/jackson-katz/dsks-alleged-victim-shoul_b_930996.html
Healing The Dreams of A Broken Heart
Guest Blog Post By Pastor Deborah
Agape Love, Love Is Here Ministry
Hello, this is Pastor Deborah of Agape Love, Love Is Here. I am honored to be a Guest Blogger
for NAASCA. NAASCA is graciously is allowing me to provide a series of 3 Blogs for you to
read. The Series is entitled Healing The Dreams of A Broken Heart
These Blogs are a complete series of how a Broken Heart’s Dreams are healed and melt like
lemon drops. The Inspiration for the Blogs and to show the hidden spiritual revelations in a
movie, The Wizard of Oz, 1939. Starring Judy Garland and the Classic song, Over The Rainbow.
Enjoy each Blog. The Blogs Titles are 1. The Yellow Brick Road
2. The Three Companions
3. The Ruby Slippers
Each Blog is written and has a video that goes along with it. The Links are provided. Enjoy and
learn about HEALING THE DREAMS OF A BROKEN HEART.
Love Pastor Deborah
Agape Love, Love Is Here
Twitter, Linkedin and Youtube Channel of The Hidden Kingdoms
Blog Post #2
The Three Companions
The differences between Ontario’s interim sex-ed curriculum and 2015′s
Just two weeks before classes start, the Ontario provincial government has given elementary school teachers a new interim elementary health education curriculum, leaving many scrambling to figure out what they can and can’t teach.
The document stresses the importance of sexual abstinence, contains no references to consent and makes no mention of scientific names for genitalia – the words “penis” or “vagina” appear nowhere in the update. The parts of the interim plan that deal with sexual education are largely the same as the last health curriculum update, from 1998.
The following is a list of some of the differences between the sections related to sexual education in the interim and 2015 editions.
In the 2015 curriculum, students learn the names of different body parts, including genitalia, using scientific terminology (e.g., penis, vagina) as well as basic personal hygiene by the end of Grade 1.
In the interim version, by the end of grade one, students learn the names of “major” body parts, without using the names of any genitalia.
LGBT, gender identity and expression
The introduction of 2015 curriculum says teachers should always consider the needs of transgender and gender-non-conforming students.
In Grade 3, it teaches children that differences make people unique and to respect people with different skin colours, physical abilities, cultural values, gender identities, sexual orientations and so on.
In Grade 6, students learn to challenge stereotypes about gender roles, sexual orientation and gender expression, and how factors like gender identity, body image, mental health, and so on, can affect someone’s self-concept.
In Grade 7, students learn about physical and psychological factors related to decisions about sexual health, such as gender identity and sexual orientation.
In Grade 8, students learn about different gender identities such as two-spirit, transgender, transsexual and intersex, and how factors such as sexual orientation and gender identity can influence people’s decisions about sex, and that gay-straight student alliances can be sought out as support services.
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In the interim version, students learn about similarities and differences between themselves and others, such as body size and gender, in Grade 2. This version does mention gender identity in its introduction but only to flag it as a potentially challenging topic to teach. The introduction also states that students of all gender identities should feel comfortable and free from harassment. This version does not specifically mention that the topic of gender identity be taught in any grades. The word “transgender” is mentioned once, in the glossary, using the non-preferred term “transgendered.”
First Nations, Métis, Inuit
In the 2015 curriculum, students learn the basic stages of human development in Grade 2, including a teacher prompt about “teachings from different cultures, including First Nations, Métis and Inuit cultures, about the cycles of birth, life and death.”
In Grade 6, students learn how to build healthier relationships with others and themselves using skills based on First Nations, Métis and Inuit cultural teachings.
In Grade 8, students learn about the two-spirit gender identity, which is used by First Nations people to refer to someone with both feminine and masculine spirits.
In the interim version, students in Grade 4 learn about teachings of First Nations, Métis, or Inuit cultures to strengthen their relationships.
In the 2015 version, a teacher prompt urges Grade 7 students to be clear in their own minds about what they are comfortable doing, including delaying sexual activity. A prompt in Grade 8 notes that abstinence is the only way to be 100-per-cent certain about avoiding sexually transmitted infections or unwanted pregnancy.
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In the interim version, students learn in Grade 7 about abstinence as it relates to healthy sexuality, and in Grade 8 about “the importance of abstinence.” The curriculum’s introduction instructs teachers to portray abstinence as a “positive choice.”
In the 2015 version, students learn in Grade 6 that consent is defined as “a clear ‘yes’ ”, and that anything else, including silence or uncertainty, is not consent. In Grade 7, students learn the importance of clear communication with a romantic partner about all aspects of sex, including consent. Consent is taught again in Grade 8.
The interim version does not mention the concept of consent.
In the 2015 curriculum, sharing private sexual photos of others online is described in Grade 5 as “unacceptable” and “illegal.” Asking for sexual pictures or making sexual comments online is also discouraged.
In Grade 6, a teacher prompt describes relationships kids might see online as “not always accurate.” Ending a relationship online, it says, “may not be a sensitive approach.”
In the interim version, the potential of exposure to online sexual predators is introduced in a teacher prompt in Grade 4. In Grade 7, the risks of sexting, as outlined by a prompt, include messages becoming public, being “manipulated or misinterpreted,” or costing students future relationships or jobs. The 2015 version adds negative effects to the victim’s well-being to that list.
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Both curriculae teach students about how negative actions can affect other people in Grade 5, but the 2015 version makes specific mention of online sexual harassment.
Both curriculae teach students about risks associated with using the internet in Grade 4, but in the 2015 version, “sexual predators” is changed to “people who ask you for sexual pictures.”
In the 2015 curriculum, teachers are prompted in Grade 6 to explain wet dreams, vaginal lubrication and masturbation as normal, if asked. “Exploring one’s body by touching or masturbating is something that many people do and find pleasurable. It is common and is not harmful and is one way of learning about your body,” it reads.
The interim version does not mention masturbation.
Hello Again, Pastor Deborah here of Agape Love, Love Is Here with another Blog for you wonderful precious ones who have suffered since your childhood with the devastating effects of childhood abuse and trauma. This Blog once again brings a new, yet as old as Eternity itself.
In this Blog Post, one will once again will be presented with concepts that may be unfamiliar to you and will need some research, some pondering, some thinking on and asking others many questions.
To bring Healing and Wholeness to A Broken Heart, one first must learn what part of oneself is Broken and What Realm it is in. Once one discovers what Realm the Broken Heart is in, then one can apply the appropriate Medicine from that Realm to bring Healing and Wellness.
So, go to the link to the Web site of Agape Love, Love Is Here and watch the Video and or read the Blog. Come and Be Challenged and Then Go and Ponder.
Love Always And Forever
Pastor Deborah, Agape Love, Love Is Here