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Thursday, 08 August 2013 09:58

DoD Removes Porn From Army, Navy Base Stores

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Following a major campaign by a grassroots morality group, the Department of Defense (DoD) has made an about-face, announcing that it will no longer sell such pornographic magazines as Penthouse and Playboy on Army and Air Force bases. While it refused to designate the two magazines as porn, following a campaign by the group Morality in Media (MIM) the DoD decided to place Playboy and Penthouse on a list of nearly 900 titles — including 48 “adult sophisticate” magazines (i.e., pornography) — that will no longer be available at Army and Air Force Exchange Service (AAFES) stores.

The change came after MIM wrote to Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel to point out that Section 2495b of title 10 of the United States Code — also known as the Military Honor and Decency Act — “prohibits the sale or rental of sexually explicit material on property under DoD jurisdiction.”

An AAFES spokesman insisted that the decision to pull the smutty magazines had nothing to do with MIM's campaign, but was strictly a business move. Army Lieutenant Col. Antwan Williams said that demand for the “soft-core” porn has decreased by 86 percent over the past 15 years, as people — including military personnel — are increasingly turning to the Internet for all kinds of entertainment and diversion.

“The decision to no longer stock the material is a business decision,” Williams said, “driven by the time, money, and energy required to facilitate buying habits, combined with decreasing demand. Magazine sales are on a sustained downward trajectory due to the proliferation of digital delivery.”

The AAFES cited other non-porn magazines that got the axe, including the Saturday Evening Post and Sponge Bob Comic, their departure making shelf space for electronic devices such as smart phones and tablets that soldiers are spending more money on.

In its June 3 letter to Hagel, MIM noted that the Pentagon had “refused to fully implement” the 1996 Military Honor and Decency Act, and was “freely allowing the sale of such publications as Playboy, Penthouse, Nude, and other magazines that dominantly depict nudity in a lascivious way. Now our military is reaping what it has sown, the sexual exploitation and assault of thousands in uniform, particularly women, each year.”

Referring to its own PornHarmsResearch.com website, the morality group pointed to an overwhelming amount of evidence that “demonstrates a link between pornography consumption and increased sexual violence and objectification of women.... Thus, it is no surprise that the U.S. Military sees a steady increase in sexual assaults.”

In addition to asking for the removal of the offending magazines from base exchanges, MIM requested that Hagel also “prohibit access to pornography by electronic devices or other means on all military bases and government-owned facilities used by the military worldwide.”

The group noted that it had received “a steady stream of comments from servicemen and servicewomen and their spouses regarding the widespread use of pornography in the U.S. Military, especially by servicemen on military bases during deployment. Spouses particularly complain of the resulting addiction and violent behaviors resulting from pornography use, often developed during deployments.”

Despite the AAFES' insistence that it was going to drop Playboy, Penthouse, and other disgusting materials anyway, MIM took the move as a win in its ongoing fight against pornography. “It is a great victory that the Army and Air Force exchanges will finally stop selling sexually exploitive magazines,” said MIM's executive director Dawn Hawkins. “Hopefully the other branches will follow suit or Secretary Hagel will order their removal from all bases.”

At least one other branch has, indeed, followed suit. On June 13, reported Charisma News Service, Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus ordered the removal of all offensive and degrading materials — including pornography — from Navy work places, as well as from Navy exchanges, where a number of salacious and pornographic magazines had traditionally been offered.

2 comments

  • Comment Link aCultureWarrior Thursday, 08 August 2013 18:46 posted by aCultureWarrior

    Why didn't our politicians think about the Military Honor and Decency Act when they voted to allow same sex perverts to serve openly in our military?

  • Comment Link REMant Thursday, 08 August 2013 18:33 posted by REMant

    The only disgusting thing I find about Playboy and Penthouse are that, like the rest of the media, they aren't what they used to be, not that they really were to begin with. But some ppl like fantasizing. Anyway, the P or BX's used to carry a LOT of magazines, which they've now decided, not unreasonably, to cut back since they were not selling, and anything that will improve the quality of these institutions for the military ought to be encouraged,

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