A Light Matter (or The Dangers of Enforced Darkness)


John 3:19-20

“And this is the judgment, that the light has come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil. For every one who does evil hates the light, and does not come to the light, lest his deeds should be exposed.”

It was the late 1920’s and the most powerful man in Chicago was arguably Alphonse Capone. His underworld crime cartel ruled he streets and paid off the political structures. Where did he get this kind of power? The illegal distribution of liquor. Prohibition was on its heyday and the manufacture and distribution of alcohol was driven into the darkness. But instead of dying in darkness, it thrived and metastasized, infecting the very foundations of the civic order.

Ironically, when Capone was released from Alcatraz 11 years later, Prohibition had been repealed. Rather than returning to head up a crime syndicate running alcohol, he retired to Miami as a powerless old man to die of syphilis. Why? Because the way to disinfect society of his mafia gangs and wars was simply to make it legal and bring it into the light.

There are a few applications of this proven principle, and I won’t go over them all here. What I believe to be one of the greatest evils in our current civilization is human trafficking. More specifically, sex trafficking. How do we effectively purge out this scourge from our society? By learning the lesson of Prohibition and Al Capone.

Here is what I mean. Much of modern day sex trafficking is used to supply the demand for illicit sexual activity, as well as the creation and marketing of pornography. How do we bring this into the light? Eliminate demand? No, prohibition fuels demand. By bringing it into the light of legalization. For example, if massages with the so-called “happy ending” were legalized and treated as a consensual business transaction, it would eliminate the need to operate as a criminal enterprise. It would also mean it would be possible to know who their customers were. Again, the light drives out the darkness.

But what about the multi-billion dollar porn industry? Some of it is legal, while some is not. Bring it into the light of legalization (for adults). This is not just an online thing, either. It may seem radical, but what about rescinding public nudity laws. I doubt everyone would suddenly cast off their clothing. But if body parts were thought of as body parts, all bearing (Baring?) the image of God, why would someone want to go online to see them? That’s like sneaking around with a laptop and looking at elbows or ankles.

Does that mean we think everything goes and anything you want to do is moral? Of course not! Prohibition was been gone for nearly 90 years, but as a society we still look down on drunkenness. And with studies showing that it doesn’t actually harm anyone, including children, to see it in a non-sexual context, what we have to gain in the destruction of the porn industry and the trafficked illicit sex worker industry more than makes up for the losses of the illusion that no one participates in such things.

I realize this sounds radical or even sinful, but it’s a matter of public policy that will actually yield a better society, free from the stain of sex trafficking.

But that is just my opinion.