How Playboy Became Boring
Last week the unthinkable happened….playboy decided to no longer include nudity in their magazine. At first this may seem like victory for Christians who fight against pornography until you read what the read the reason for this given by Scott Flanders, their chief executive.
“You’re now one click away from every sex act imaginable for free. And so it’s just passé at this juncture.”
This choice has placed a much-needed emphasis on the danger of online pornography, and by doing so highlighted an incredibly frightening truth explained by Samuel James in his article “The Utter Victory of Online Pornography”
Russell Moore points out the fact that this boredom comes from the emotional and physical release of pornography in an article entitled “Playboy is too boring to succeed”
First of all, it shouldn’t surprise us that a culture awash in graphic porn would find Playboy dull. Those with experience counseling in this area have told us for years that pornography is fueled by novelty and the “high” of the forbidden. What initially seems thrilling ultimately is mundane.
Interestingly Moore goes on by pointing out marriage (and sex) is meant to be a picture of Christ and the Church. By making this only a physical thing the deeper meaning is missed.
This is why sexual revolutions always turn out so boring. This is why the sterile, casual, condom-clad vision of sex in our culture is so dull. This is why pornography is so numbing to the soul. It is because in the search for sexual excitement men and women are not really looking for biochemical sensations or the responses of nerve endings. And, in fact, they are not ultimately even looking for each other. They are searching desperately, not for mere sex, but for that to which sex points–something they know exists but they just can’t identify.
One of the best articles on this subject I read last week was “how Playboy magazine legitimized pornography-and destroyed itself in the process” by Joe Carter. In it he explains how this idea of playboy becoming boring actually began when they made pornography a normal part of life.
What pornography needed to be profitable on a mass scale was to be removed from the sexual ghetto and brought into the living room. It needed someone to adopt it, domesticate it, and teach it manners. As a mythmaker on the scale of Walt Disney, Hugh Hefner did for porn what Henry Higgins did for Eliza Doolittle.
We all know that pornography destroys relationships, marriage, and a view of sexuality. But sometimes we need a not so gentle reminder of its power to destroy the thing that brought it into our living room in the first place.
The proper response to the power of pornography is explained in great detail in an awesome article by Eric Simmons entitled “I Hate Porn” where he describes in short sentences the affect pornography has on a life.
I hate porn because it turns potential missionaries into impotent Christians.
I hate porn because it destroys marriage, many before they even begin.
I hate porn because it extends adolescence and keeps men boys.
More than ever before there is a need for men (myself included) to remember the power of pornography…because if playboy cannot win the war apart from Christ we don’t stand a chance.