Physical pleasure, specifically sexual fulfillment, is an intrinsic part of human beings’ lives. It can bring great joy and happiness to people while at the same time strengthening the bonds of morality. This can be seen in the consummation of a marriage and the subsequent creation of a new life. However, physical pleasure is often sought for the wrong reasons, and though it may bring one person a great amount of enjoyment, many times it is at the expense of others and thus morally wrong. In modern society, the lust for physical pleasure has led to the creation of industries that profit from the marketing of sex. The pornographic industry, which degrades women and emphasizes male domination and violence, portrays sex as merely something physical with no emotions involved. It undermines the relationship between love and physical pleasure and appeals to people’s carnal desires which sometimes bypasses rational decision making.
This desire for physical pleasure has also led to the proliferation of child abuse, incest, prostitution, and rape. A young boy accidentally stumbles upon a pornographic magazine that his father has hidden. He becomes sexually excited and because of the images receives instant gratification. Because of his new feelings, he repeatedly returns to these magazines and eventually moves on to more graphic material. His outlook upon women and sex is negatively influenced and morally wrong. Another example of physical pleasure misconstrued is the Howard Stern Show, a nationally syndicated radio show. On this show, they are sponsoring a game in which they hide a woman somewhere in the New York area, and whoever finds her can have sex with her. This show has many young impressionable listeners.
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Prostitution, one of the oldest occupations in society which is mentioned specifically in the Bible, trades sex for money. Money and pleasure take the place of morals. People are willing to break the law and risk not only their lives but the lives of others for sexual gratification. Sexually transmitted diseases such as AIDS are very widely circulated due to unprotected sex especially among prostitutes, and the men that visit them often go back to wives and families. A middle-aged man with a family and a career drive into the city one night looking for a prostitute to enliven his ordinary life. He pays a woman for sex, thus committing a crime and adultery. Also, unbeknownst to him, he contracts a sexually transmitted disease that he then gives to his wife.
The women who become prostitutes are often abused, raped, and become addicted to drugs. For example, many girls who turn to prostitution are young runaways. They have no money or way to support themselves and are drawn into the business by the lure of money. Rape is also a major form of physical pleasure for some. Generally, women are the victims in these sexual encounters in which men force women to have nonconsensual intercourse. Most men derive great pleasure from this act even though it is at the expense of another. The victims however tell a different story, for they are raped not only physically, but are also raped emotionally and spiritually. This immoral act is committed for the sole purposes of physical and mental domination and sexual pleasure. The need to fulfill this desire becomes so strong that it perverts people’s senses of right and wrong.
A young college student attends a fraternity party in which there is alcohol. While at the party she meets a young man, whom she likes. He encourages her to drink more, then takes her up to his bedroom to “talk”. However, once there he initiates sexual overtures and when she says no, he physically forces her to submit. All of these physical acts, though done for pleasure, destroy the relationship between pleasure and morality. Any type of pleasure that is derived from the pain of others, whether it is physical, emotional, or spiritual, is morally wrong. Any show that objectifies women or any man that willfully cheats on and endangers his wife and family because of physical pleasure shows that the intention, as well as the act itself, is far away from morally correct decision making.