There have been several supposedly “scientific” studies published this year that either disparaged people of faith or insidiously mocked religion.
That includes a study, published in the journal Science, which asserted that people who believe in God are not analytical thinkers.
There also was a study, published in the journal Social Psychological and Personality Science, which claimed that “highly religious” folk are less compassionate toward the needy than atheists.
Now comes yet another study, published this week in the Journal of Sex Research, which claims that adult film actresses are actually more religious than women who don’t get paid to have sex on camera.
“In terms of psychological characteristics,” the study’s five co-authors concluded, “porn actresses had higher levels of…spirituality compared to the matched group.”
This dubious study would be unworthy of comment except that it has gotten a lot of media coverage. It pretends to be scholarly research. But it’s nothing more than junk science.
Indeed, for those who blindly accept its findings, it leads to the absurd conclusion that there is some sort of link between sexual depravity and religiosity.
Uncritical thinkers could come away with the cockeyed notion that, just because a woman is sexually depraved – because she is a stripper or a prostitute or a porn actress – doesn’t mean she isn’t a woman of faith. Doesn’t mean she doesn’t love the Lord.
The authors of the Journal of Sex Research study argue that their findings disprove the “damaged goods hypothesis” with respect to “female performers in the adult entertainment industry.”
But close examination of the study’s methodology reveal obvious flaws that skew its findings.
It relied on the self-reporting of 177 porn actresses who responded to an advertisement posted at a Los Angeles health clinic, which was founded by a retired porn actress, and which catered to the adult film industry (before it was shut down last year by the L.A. County Health Department).
Apparently, it did not occur to the study’s authors that self-delusional porn actresses might misrepresent themselves as well-adjusted.
Might claim to have higher self-esteem, more positive feelings about themselves, a better support system, a more satisfying sex life and even a closer relationship with the Lord than women who don’t defile themselves for all the world to see.
The reality is that the 177 porn actresses who responded to the survey on which the study published in the Journal of Sex Research was based are indeed damaged goods.
And there is no better authority on the subject than Shelley Lubben, a former porn actress and born-again Christian. She is currently the Executive Director of the Pink Cross Foundation, a faith-based organization that reaches out to women caught up in the adult film industry.
The pornography business destroys body and soul, Lubben attests. Many porn actresses battle alcohol and drug abuse. They perform sex acts that are physically harmful and psychologically traumatizing. They contract sexually transmitted diseases.
There is a way for porn actresses to avoid that almost certain fate – give their lives to Christ. For whom the Son sets free is free indeed.