Long Term Effect of Child Pornography Child pornography in its traditional form was produced and distributed in the form of photographs and magazines. Children involved in explicit sexual activities were processed in photographs and magazines. Obviously, that was not an easy task because child pornography then needed commercial processing that required many employees employed in production. Any of the employees could have reported the production of child pornography to the authorities and it could have been checked and stopped. That was the reason why during those times, child pornography was not so common.
Furthermore, distribution of child pornography was also not as easy as it is today. During those periods, child pornography could have been distributed only by means of common governmental mail services or through some clandestine distribution networks. (Stewart, 1997) During the mid-1980’s, the home video technology evolved and it changed the scenario for child pornography. Paedophiles started using inexpensive camcorders to produce amateur child pornography videos and they could have done this without anybody’s help at their own home with least or no worries about information of their acts to any other body or the authority.
Thus, with the advancement of entertainment technology, the ways to easily exploit the children and create pornography of amateur children evolved. With the advent of internet in 1990, the scenario changed further in favour of paedophiles. With internet facility, they got an easy and much secure way to create, share and distribute paedophilic pornography anywhere around the world. It is difficult to regulate news groups, chat rooms and commercial on-line service and to check and stop activities involved with child pornography that are going on internet. Stewart, 1997) It should be noted that before the advent of computer and internet, child pornography necessarily included activities of sexual exploitation of children, but after the invention and commercialization of computer and internet, soon the means of virtual child pornography were evolved. Virtual child pornography does not include any sexually abusive act against any child; these pornographic pictures are created virtually by using computer graphics.
But that does not mean that now with the processing of virtual child pornography, the dangers of child pornography have decreased. Even Virtual child pornography can be used by paedophiles to lure children and use them for their ill-ideas. Thus, child pornography in any form is dangerous and can cause harmful effects on children and the whole society as it can be used to instigate sexual abuses against children. Sexual abuse can be extremely painful for the child. Traditional child pornography that includes actual abuse and exploitation of children is much more dangerous.
Victims of child abuse often suffer the experience of guilt and responsibility for the abuse and betrayal that makes them feel a sense of powerlessness and feelings of worthlessness and low self-esteem. Nightmares and flashbacks associated with posttraumatic behavioural stress are the common problems they may face. Their nature becomes bitter and inconsistent and while trying to cope with traumatic events of child sexual abuse, the victims often gets depressed, they can involve in prostitution or drug addiction, they may attempt suicide too (Kornegay, 2006).
It should be clear that effects of sexual child abuse vary from person to person (Sanderson, 2006). Some children may come up with the extreme effects of the sexual abuse they suffered, forget them and lead towards a better life if got a chance, while some other children may fail to recover their emotional and psychological strength and confidence. They may suffer failure in their general goals of life too. A victim of sexual abuse often finds himself alienated and different, the child often fails to express his or her real suffering to anybody else and that further complicates the consequences of the sexual abuse.
Some researchers have also tried to mitigate the effects of child abuse. In 1999, American Psychological Association refused to withdraw a psychological research study that claimed that sexual child abuse is not harmful to those children who shows “consent” for the sexual acts. In 1998, American Psychological Association published a study by three prominent professors Mr. Bruce Rand from Temple University, Mr. Philip Tromovitch from the University of Pennsylvania and Mr. Robert Bauserman from the University of Michigan, in its reputed Psychological Bulletin. The study claimed that hild sexual abuse does not necessarily produce long term negative consequences. They further suggested that even if some post-traumatic negative effects do occurs, they remain temporary and does not long last (O’Meara, 1999). Child Pornography has evolved from its traditional form to hi-tech virtual child pornographic form and now it is much easier to produce, share and distribute child pornography using internet media. The long term effects of child pornography can be extremely painful for children and some children may face such situational stresses and depression that can force them towards drug addiction and other serious ills.
On the other hand, there have been some studies that have tried to mitigate the long term effects of child pornography and child sexual abuse. Some of them have even tried to drop the terms “Child Sexual Abuse” or “Child molestation” in case where the child takes part in the sexual activity with “Consent”, these psychological researchers have recommended to use much mitigated term such as “Adult-child sex” (O’Meara, 1999). References and bibliography Christiane Sanderson, 2006, “Counselling Adult Survivors of Child Sexual Abuse”, London, Pg. No. 0 James Nicholas Kornegay, 2006, “Protecting Our Children and the Constitution: An Analysis of the “Virtual” Child Pornography Provisions of the Protect Act of 2003”, William and Mary Law Review. Volume: 47. Issue: 6, Pg. No. 2129+ Jennifer Stewart, 1997, “If This Is the Global Community, We Must Be on the Bad Side of Town: International Policing of Child Pornography on the Internet”, Houston Journal of International Law. Volume: 20. Issue: 1, Pg. No. 205 Kelly Patricia O’Meara, 1999, “Innocence Lost? ”, Insight on the News. Volume: 15. Issue: 22, June 14, 1999. Pg No. 10