Influential Pastor Urges Christians to 'Stop Porn'

Influential Pastor Urges Christians to 'Stop Porn'

SAN DIEGO — Amidst a ramping up of religious conservative “porn addiction” propaganda timed to influence the Senate debate on KOSA and COPPA, influential pastor Nick Vujicic has taken to the interview circuit to ask for porn to be stopped and for churches to get involved in “addressing sexual sin.”

In an interview published on the Christian Broadcasting Network (CBN) show “Faithwire” on Saturday, the San Diego-based Australian American pastor, who was born without arms or legs, brings up the controversial topic of “pornography addiction,” a characterization of compulsive behavior that has been widely debunked by scientists and psychiatrists.

“Let’s talk about your pornographic addiction,” Vujicic tells viewers. “When was the last time you actually saw pornography? It’s scientifically proven that, when you’re pornographically addicted, it rewires your brain.”

According to Vujicic’s religiously-informed theories of cognition and behavioral science, this supposed “rewiring” prevents people from “being renewed” in their minds.

“So what happens is we get comfortable and we get lazy and we just look for coping mechanisms to feel OK,” he added. “Just because you feel OK this week doesn’t mean anything.”

What Vujicic incorrectly describes as brain rewiring is, in fact, standard coping behavior by psychological standards. However, his prescription for rectifying what he terms addiction and brain rewiring is not therapeutic but theological: he demands that those “living in sexual sin” should “reveal, repent, and restore.”

According to the pastor, agreeing with his widely contested theory of “porn addiction” is a necessary condition for such recovery.

“Part of repentance is something called accountability,” Vujicic tells viewers. Presenting himself as an example, the preacher continues: “I’m not addicted to any pornography. I’m not addicted to drugs. I’m not addicted. I’m also not sacrificing my family for ministry. I’ve seen too many people not finish strong. Why? Because I have accountability. I make sure my family comes first. I make sure that we do all that we can to hunger and thirst for righteousness. That’s what we need to do.

“This ain’t rocket science,” Vujicic concludes.

Spreading Misinformation About Porn and 'Sex Trafficking'

Earlier this year, Vujicic and fellow anti-porn preacher Jaco Booyen made a TikTok-style vertical video urging viewers to “stop porn.” 

“Stop! Did you know that sex trafficking is actually a crime of force, fraud and coercion and the thing that drives sex trafficking the most is pornography?” their message runs. “It’s right in your own backyard, it’s in your school. Please be aware. Get educated. Go to Jaco Booyen’s Ministries’ website. Learn. Get the resources and make sure you share this video.”

Vujicic and Booyen’s blatant erasure of the difference between consensual sex work, adult content and “sex trafficking” follows the playbook of increasingly well-funded anti-porn lobbies such as NCOSE and Exodus Cry.

Vujicic’s San Diego ministry, — which uses the motto “Reframe your crippling fear!” — also prominently promotes a proposed new anti-abortion financial institution called ProLife Bank. 

“Noah built an ark to save lives,” the pastor’s website proclaims. “We are building a bank to do the same.”

An Uptick in Religious Conservative Propaganda About 'Porn Addiction'

The pastor’s CBN appearance is part of a notable uptick in religiously inspired “porn addiction” propaganda pieces emanating from conservative outlets, as senators prepare to debate controversial legislation that may lead to censorship of adult content.

Last week, leading conservative publication National Review published a piece titled “Tech Addiction Doesn’t Only Hurt the Young,” platforming the views of one Greg Schutte, a “professional counsellor” from Dayton, Ohio, who minimized the impact of socioeconomic factors on the unhappiness of families.

“Today, nearly all the married couples he works with are suffering from ‘addiction to electronics,’” Schutte told the National Review, before offering a fanciful estimate that “75 to 80 percent have something like a tech or social-media addiction,” including what he calls “porn addiction.”

As XBIZ reported, religious groups have emerged as the main architects of recent state laws seeking to ban pornography through vaguely written “age verification” requirements.

Earlier this month, Terry Schilling — the leader of the American Principles Project, a well-funded, anti-porn conservative lobby — took credit for the age verification laws passed in recent months by seven states, and admitted they were experiments so that the next Republican U.S. attorney general can prosecute anyone uploading adult content that could be seen by a minor.

Republican politicians — often with the acquiescence of Democrats from swing districts, who are too scared to stand up for free speech — have readily offered their services to groups such as Schilling’s.

Virginia State Sen. Bill Stanley, author of the age verification law that led Pornhub to shut down access in the commonwealth in June, recently defended the controversial, vaguely worded mandate by claiming that adult sites are harmful “in the sense of body shaming issues, developing proper relationships, what is normal.”

“What are on these websites are not normal,” Stanley declared.

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