It’s utterly confounding to realize that you may be able to find a site that offers the kids’ movie you want for free – but the screen is likely to be surrounded by suggestive drawings or photos that link to pornographic content.
How do you say “outrage”? For most of us baby boomers who were told next to nothing about sex – and probably had a tough time explaining it to our kids – this is an almost unimaginable challenge to the belief that it’s important to protect children’s innocence.
In a 2012 New York Times article, “When children see Internet pornography,” a young boy is quoted as asking his parent, “Mom, why do women like to be choked?” The article also contains a few links to programs for trying to manage this dire trend – though most experts say it is impossible to completely shield your kids from it.
In a 2015 article, “Parenting in the age of online porn,” experts say statistics are not so far indicating a younger generation that’s out of control sexually – teen pregnancy is down, sex among ninth graders is down. Gulp – ninth graders. When one mother discovered a previous search phrase on her computer for “child porn,” her older son told her he’d been looking for porn made for children because he wanted to know what his body was supposed to look like at his age. There’s that beautiful innocence.
Some therapists feel this epidemic of easily accessible pornography is extremely damaging to children and young teens. Yet the jury is apparently still out among other therapists on just how bad the long-term effects will be. But there’s no question pornography can cause confusion, worry and/or fear even when children are able to process what they see with responsible, caring adults.
If we could legally stop advertising to children on Saturday morning cartoons, surely we can stop porn vendors from “advertising” on children’s content websites. Come on, legislators. Get with it.
Well, grandmothers, be deeply aware of the dangers when you search the Internet for free movies for your grandchildren. And do your due diligence on intelligent ways to handle it if it comes up with one of them.