Friday, November 17, 2006

Erotoxins and pr0n, the final chapter

And so we come back to the curious subject of "erotoxins," and their alleged role in the dangers of pr0n. Which, as I'm understanding it, by any other name, is pretty well synonymous with,

serves as a special kind of hate speech against women, that is reinforced biochemically by men’s masturbatory orgasms. other words, in Goff's words.

But so okay, let's consider this idea, this "hate speech that is reinforced biochemically by men's [why only men's? anyway] masturbatory orgasms."

Let's ask Mr. Wizard, shall we? Or, not, but okay, well here's All Experts:

Erototoxins, according to Judith Reisman, are addictive psychoactive neurochemicals formed in the brain upon seeing pornography, thus allegedly showing a link between pornography and such negative phenomena as serial murder, rape, child molestation, and erectile dysfunction. There is, however, no noted scientific basis for these claims.

Detailed searches of recent scientific literature fail to find references to erototoxins. No scientific literature from the last 30 years could be found that includes the term. This suggests that either scientists are not looking for and studying erototoxins, that they are referring to them by other names or that the theory is simply wrong. This absence of evidence casts doubt on Dr. Judith Reisman's November 2004 testimony before the U. S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation. [1]

Endorphins are substances produced by the brain as a result of sexual arousal, physical exercise, strong pain, laughter, etc. They cause pleasurable sensations and are somewhat addictive; drugs like morphine attach to the same receptors as endorphins. However, endorphins do not fit Reisman's definition of erototoxins, as their production is not specific to the consumption of pornography.

Oh, right, that might be what she actually meant: endorphins. Yeah. Runner's high; eating chile peppers; actual sex. Stuff like that. I guess that is sort of "addictive;" it feels good. Clearly, there's something wrong with it. Particularly if it also activates your sexy bits.

From a site called MindHacks. All about "neuroscience and psychology tricks to find out what's going on in your brain."

"According to Dr Judith Reisman, pornography affects the physical structure of your brain turning you into a porno-zombie. Porn, she says, is an "erototoxin", producing an addictive "drug cocktail" of testosterone, oxytocin, dopamine and serotonin with a measurable organic effect on the brain."

In the first instance, she's right. Pornography does physically affect the brain. In fact, everything we experience physically changes the brain in some way.

What Reisman is trying to do, is portray this physical effect as 'damage'. Furthermore, she argues the damage could be so severe, that an affected person would not be rational enough to engage in 'free speech' (notice the leap?).

Unfortunately, her self-published paper The Psychopharmacology of Pictorial Pornography Restructuring Brain, Mind & Memory & Subverting Freedom of Speech (PDF) is highly selective when reviewing the published neuroscience research.

Many of her arguments are based on one-reference claims, and some only on what she calls "extensive documentation". One unmentioned implication is the fact that, if sexual arousal from pornography causes 'brain damage', then so will real-life sex!

or, as another commenter notes, real sex would be far more dangerous, on account of it would mean

all the same neurotransmitters and hormones being released in greater concentrations.

from another commenter:

From the Desert News story Reisman states that Visual pornography should not be defended as a First Amendment right, because visual pornography reaches a different part of the brain than speech, "a brain that is visceral, nonspeech, right hemisphere."

She sure does like to distort the facts doesn't she. Even ignoring the fact that the right side of the brain handles pitch and inflection (like the overtones of a seductive voice). This would imply that the 1st amendment doesn't cover any form of media that uses imagery or music....

Finally, from the Guardian:

According to Dr Judith Reisman, pornography affects the physical structure of your brain turning you into a porno-zombie. Porn, she says, is an "erototoxin ", producing an addictive "drug cocktail " of testosterone, [ah, so -that's- why only male masturbation, i guess] oxytocin, dopamine and serotonin with a measurable organic effect on the brain.

Some of us might consider this a good thing. Not Reisman: erototoxins aren't about pleasure, they're a "fear-sex-shame-and-anger stimulant". Reisman's paper on the subject The Psychopharmacology of Pictorial Pornography Restructuring Brain, Mind & Memory & Subverting Freedom of Speech has helped make her the darling of the anti-pornography crusade, and in November last year she presented her erototoxin theory to the US senate.

Under the auspices of Utah's Lighted Candle Society (LCS), Reisman and Victor Cline, a clinical psychologist at the University of Utah, began raising money from American conservative and religious organisations. They hope to raise at least $3m to conduct MRI scans on victims under the influence of porn and so prove their theories correct. They foresee two possible outcomes: if they can demonstrate that porn physically "damages " the brain, that might open the floodgates for "big tobacco"-style lawsuits against porn publishers and distributors; second, and more insidiously, if porn can be shown to "subvert cognition " and affect the parts of the brain involved in reasoning and speech, then "these toxic media should be legally outlawed, as is all other toxic waste, and eliminated from our societal structure ".

What's more, people whose brains have been rotted by pornography are no longer expressing "free speech " and, for their own good, shouldn't be protected under the First Amendment.

But there's a catch. Much of Reisman's research in developing her theory has necessitated examining hundreds, perhaps thousands, of pornographic magazines and films. By her own reasoning her brain ought, by now, to be a seething mass of toxic smutmulch ...

Hahahaha! Oh. Wait.



antiprincess said...

egg, frying pan...this is your brain on porn; any questions?

is it only men whose brains turn to soup? only non-researchers? what makes her brain so special that she's somehow protected +2 against turning into a pornozombie?

belledame222 said...

She took it out and put it somewhere for safekeeping before she started?

piny said...

*shrug* Must be the same vaccine they give the good ol' boys at the Vatican. said...

This won't really have success, I consider like this.

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