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“When,” Not “If”

By December 14, 2022No Comments

Episode 84

“When,” Not “If”

Live Presentations That Educate Youth On The Harms Of Porn

As porn becomes increasingly normalized in the digital age, education on its well-documented harms becomes increasingly important. Since 2009, Fight the New Drug has educated over 1M+ individuals worldwide about the harms of pornography through our live presentation program. Fight the New Drug’s age-appropriate and engaging live presentation program highlights research from respected academic institutions that demonstrate the significant impacts of porn consumption on individuals, relationships, and society.

In this Consider Before Consuming episode, learn about Fight the New Drug’s history presenting to audiences around the world and how you can educate your community on the harms of pornography by hosting a live presentation by Fight the New Drug.

Get 10% OFF your event booking fees for your first school, college, company, or community presentation when you use code: CONSIDER

Click here to request a Fight the New Drug live presentation today.

EPISODE TRANSCRIPT

FTND Ad:
You’re listening to Consider before Consuming, a podcast by Fight The New Drug, and in case you’re new here, Fight The New Drug is a non-religious and non-legislative organization that exists to provide individuals the opportunity to make an informed decision regarding pornography by raising awareness on its harmful effects, using only science, facts, and personal accounts. We want these conversations to be educational, uplifting, and hopeful. As we sit down with experts, influencers, activists, and people with personal accounts, we cover a wide variety of topics that may be triggering to some; listener discretion is advised. Today’s episode is with Fight the New Drugs Director of Public Outreach, Parker. We sat down with Parker to discuss the prevalence of pornography in our society today, especially amongst youth and the importance of educating teens and young adults on the harms of pornography. We discussed Fight The New Drug’s live presentation program and how you can get more involved by educating your audience on the harms of porn by bringing Fight the new drug to your community.

Garrett:
What is up people? My name is Garrett Johnson, and this is

Parker:
Consider Before Consuming.

Garrett:
And this is Parker. Parker is our, actually, I’m gonna let you introduce yourself, Parker.

Parker:
Yeah. I’m Parker. I am the Director of Public Outreach at Fight The New Drug.

Garrett:
The podcast today is focused on our presentation program, and so I would assume that the viewers and listeners are here because they’re interested in a presentation, or maybe they just clicked on it and they didn’t know that we have a presentation program, but it’s a pretty big deal. And I think one reason why people here is the obvious reason is that the, the harmful effects of pornography do not discriminate. And it is very prevalent in our world today. To give you a couple stats to help you understand how prevalent pornography is today, according to this study, 84% of males 14 to 18 and 57% of females, 14 to 18 have been exposed to pornography. Yeah. At some point that shows the prevalence of why these conversations need to happen. Another stat is that the majority of 11 to 13 year olds in this study had been exposed to pornography. So it’s happening, the exposure to pornography is happening at a young age. This is a adult content, it’s labeled adult content, but these stats show that underage exposure is an issue.

Parker:
Yeah, absolutely. So that first study Garrett talked about, it’s a big sample of teenagers in the United States, 14, 18 years old, and then that other study, the 11 to 13 year olds, the majority of them being exposed. The thing that I found was really interesting about that is, that same study interviewed the parents and they found that 75% of parents, think that their kids have not been exposed to pornography. So three outta four parents think their kids have not been exposed. And when they talked with those parents’ kids, they found that 53% of those parents who thought their kids had not been exposed, 53% of those kids had already seen pornography. So three outta four parents think their kids haven’t seen porn, and the majority of those parents’ kids have already seen porn. And I think that’s why the presentation program is great because it helps people to be able to educate in a healthy way.
You know, it’s not shaming. We’re talking about it with science facts and personal accounts. We’re really trying to help the, the youth to consider before consuming and have healthy conversations. And some other interesting research that I wanted to mention while we’re on this topic is, some recent research in, 2022, they found that, school staff and administrators see pornography, the majority of them see porn as a serious issue that affects their school’s culture and climate surrounding things like violence and our sexual violence. And they found that education programs on pornography such as like, fight and drug event, give the administrators more confidence in addressing these issues and helping prevent sexual harassment in their schools, which is also pretty cool.

Garrett:
Right. Going back to that stat that you mentioned, of the 75% of parents, they thought that their kids had not been exposed to pornography, but the reality was that 53% of those parents’ kids had been exposed to pornography. That’s a concerning place to be. As a parent myself, I can speak to that being a concerning place because if my kid has been exposed to pornography and I’m not aware that my kid has been exposed to pornography, that means the conversations aren’t happening. And so again, the goal of our presentation, the goal of Fight The New Drug, is to start healthy conversations. The way we do that is we use science, facts, and personal accounts.

Parker:
Accounts. Yeah.

Garrett:
So if you’re a parent and you’re listening to this and you’re not sure if your kid has been exposed to pornography, a presentation or a discussion about a presentation can be a good place to start. Speaking about the presentation program, it is one of the foundations of fight, maybe the foundation that we started on. The co-founders, if you go back about 13, 14 years ago when they started fight the new drug, one of the first things that they did was they were able to present to a school, to a public school. And so again, it’s like the foundation of Fight The New Drug. And a lot of people aren’t aware that we have this presentation program.

Parker:
Yeah. I mean, if you’re to think about Fight, you know, really a grassroots movement, we’re trying to make impact all over the world, and we do that through a lot of different ways, but individuals really are the ones who have the ultimate impact on their community. Right. Speaking up, making a change,

Garrett:
Can you speak to some of the milestones that we’ve reached with our presentation program in regards to the, the reach that the program has had?

Parker:
Yeah. You want me to brag about us a little bit? So, we’ve been fortunate to speak to over, a million individuals all around the world. World. We’ve done over 1800 live presentations since Fight The New Drug started, and then we’ve presented in some pretty cool places as well.

Garrett:
Yeah, I was gonna mention going back to what I said earlier about episode one of Consider Before Consuming with Clay, he talks about it being a global movement and you were gonna mention the places that we’ve spoken.

Parker:
Yeah. Kind of in preparing for this conversation, I went and looked, back at our records to figure out where we’ve been. And we’ve spoken in 38 states. We’ve spoken, in 10 countries around the world, and we’ve spoken on six continents around the globe. Which is pretty cool.

Garrett:
It might be good to know what type of presentations we do and who we speak to and how we tailor them to those groups.

Parker:
If I was to give like an overview, we have a few different types of presentations or like audiences we typically speak to. So, we speak to youth audiences like sixth grade and up. Right. The presentations are youthful, energetic, they’re age appropriate for anyone 11 and up. They are funny at times, they’re serious at times. And really, we’re gonna cover the information in an appropriate way, talking about how porn impacts individuals, relationships, and society. And then, we do presentations for communities. So that could be everything from, you know, a parent night at a school. So the parents are curious what we’re gonna talk to their kids about the next day, and we can get parents, the, the resources, talk to them about what we’ll share with their kids, specifically, get them resources on how to follow up the conversations after we leave.
Those same community presentations could be given to different organizations, groups at a conference, religious institutions, you know, all sorts of different groups and organizations all around the world. And then we also speak at, colleges. So if you’re a college student and you’re listening, or if you are an administrator at a college, you know, we speak at college campuses, and we give presentations that really help address, how pornography can be harmful. We dig into the science and research more than we would maybe with like a high schooler, and really help people to be able to make that informed decision and be aware, you know, most people today I think may have, there are many people today who have never even considered that porn would be harmful. Yeah. I often compare that to like a car. I think many people put gasoline in their car and they drive it around, but they really don’t know how, like an internal combustion engine works. They just know that it works. Right. Or how we get electricity or something like that. I think for a lot of young people today, porn is that same way. They grew up with porn being very normalized. They never considered how it may impact them, their relationships now in the future, our society as a whole. And that’s why the presentation program really is so important to get this information out to individuals.

Garrett:
Right, that’s a critical point that I, that I don’t want to gloss over. It’s that, well, there was two things that you said that I don’t wanna gloss over. The first thing was that you mentioned that we speak to religious organizations, even though we’re an organization that’s non-religious and non-legislative. We do go into religious organizations and all types of organizations, and we encourage, one of the reasons why they bring us in is because we are non-religious. And so these religious organizations bring us in so that we can present the science facts and personal accounts, and then we encourage those individuals to reinforce their, reinforce the science, facts, and personal accounts with their personal beliefs. And so that’s kind of a, a refreshing thing. I think that’s a big reason why a lot of people bring us in is because we do stick to the science facts and personal accounts

Parker:
And the parents and caregivers that are listening, you know, you’re obviously a great parent, that’s why you’re listening to this. You want to be able to help your kid. And the, we just think the presentation program is one of those ways that we can really get them as much information as possible. We can help start those conversations in the community. We can talk to the kids, we can talk to the parents, and we can get the parents, the resources. You know, someone might click around on our website and there’s a lot of great resources, but there really is something about a live and person event and being able to get those resources right into the parents’ hands, get the community excited about being able to finally talk about an issue that they felt was taboo for so long. And whereas for their kids it just seems normal and accepted. But for the parents, oftentimes it seems like it’s taboo.

Garrett:
One of the things we do in the presentation is we make it clear that just because someone openly consumes pornography or has a challenge with pornography, that that doesn’t make them a bad person. We’re again, just presenting these science, facts, and personal accounts so that people can make an educated decision.

Parker:
Yeah, absolutely. You know, we have a lot of blog articles on our website, but there’s a lot of them that are dedicated to helping people understand maybe the difference between like guilt and shame. And that’s something that we’ll talk about in the presentations, both with, community or with parents. Helping them to see that, you know, oftentimes people feel shame and research actually shows them, people feel shame around their pornography use. They’ll just continue to consume pornography because they feel bad. They don’t know what can help them feel better. They feel like they have no one to turn to, and the only thing that makes ’em feel better is porn. So they consume that and then they feel bad and they feel like they have no one to turn to. Nothing can make them feel better. And so they consume porn and it’s just a cycle over and over and over again.
And really what we want to do is to talk openly about porn’s impacts, to help people recognize it doesn’t have to be an uncomfortable thing. We can do this in actually an engaging way. And even with the kids, there’s times of the presentation that it’s extremely fun. We have volunteers on stage and give them free shirts and everyone gets really excited right. And being able to have and open up these conversations in a community and in homes, helping parents to feel empowered to talk about this subject with their kids, and breaking that cycle of shame for individuals who have struggled with porn, both a parent or a child.

Garrett:
Yeah. And that’s one thing that I do wanna highlight is that word engaging you, you spoke to how our presentations are engaging. I think it’s important to highlight that because if I put myself in the shoes of the viewer or listener right now, and they’ve never been to a presentation about the harmful effects of pornography, to be frank, I would imagine in my head that it would be pretty boring and dull and like, kind of like, depressing.

Parker:
I could see why you would say that. Yeah,

Garrett:
Yeah. For sure. But, but the reality is, is you mentioned the merch that we give out and the kids really do get hyped. Yeah. And they do get involved. And kids appreciate the opportunity to be able to consider before consuming.

Parker:
Absolutely. They, they appreciate that we can have a conversation that they, that entrust them. They, they feel like we trust that they can be mature enough to have this conversation. And you know, in the first couple minutes, the kids are just laughing, right. That’s our goal. We want the kids to be comfortable, we want ’em to have a good time, we want ’em to have fun, and we also wanna provide them with information to help them make decisions that can improve their life.

Garrett:
Parker, can you speak to some of the post survey results and the evidence showing that these are effective?

Parker:
Yeah, yeah. When we say post event survey, what we mean is oftentimes, before and after events we’ll have the audience take a pre and a post survey, and that way we can gather information on, the success of the program, things we might want to change and adjust in the future. And we found that in our post event survey results, about 82% of audience members find the presentation helpful and informative. And then another really hopeful statistic we found is 92% of attendees agree that porn is unhealthy after seeing a live event.

Garrett:
Right. And I think a significant amount of them go into the presentation thinking that porn consumption is just normal because it is normalized in our society, but just because it’s normalized doesn’t mean that it’s normal. And so that result, the 92% of attendees agreed that it can be unhealthy. They have a paradigm shift that allows them to consider before consuming. Over the years of presenting, we’ve collected a good amount of reviews, people that have had us come in, and then they have a positive experience and they write to us saying thank you. And I think that we should cover a few of those to give people, the listeners and viewers a better understanding of what this experience was like for some actual people who have put together a presentation. Do you wanna start off Parker and share one of those reviews?

Parker:
Yeah. Yeah. Garrett and I met beforehand and grabbed a couple that we thought were really inspiring. So quote, I work as a counselor at a school in Missouri, and I had the privilege of seeing multiple Fight The New Drug presentations. Fight The New Drug is leading the way in educating teens and young adults on the harmful effects of pornography in a hopeful, compelling and research based way. As a therapist, I sometimes received phone calls with pretty shocking situations. In one case, several years ago, I received a call from a dad looking for help and he was on his son’s cell phone and noticed that his son and fellow seventh graders were not only sending group text messages with links to hardcore pornography videos, they were also asking for nude images from girls in their class as well. And as shocking as that was, I pointed this dad to Fight The New Drug’s resources, which he helped share with the staff and other parents close quote, it’s kind of a heavy one I do wanna address. You know, we hear stories like this all the time, so if I drug, that seems less shocking to us. But if you’re a parent listening and you have a seventh grader and that’s surprising. You know, we just wanna go back to those statistics at the beginning. Right. The majority of kids between the ages of 11 and 13 have already been exposed to pornography. And there are ways to have healthy age appropriate conversations at varying ages with your children. So you can check out those resources at ftnd.org/resources

Garrett:
Another one of the reviews says one of the most rewarding parts of the Fight The New Drug event, was seeing fight the new drug present to all of the seventh and eighth graders at my kids’ school. The presenter was professional, talented, and the kids were very engaged. Seeing the students response to the presentation was deeply moving. And we look forward to having fight the new drug present again in the future. I fully support, Fight The New Drug and respectfully recommend you consider supporting their organization as well. The thing that I wanna point out from that review is that they are bringing us back to speak again as a person who has presented for several years now, Parker, four years or five years now that you’ve presented.

Parker:
I started speaking for Fight in 2017, so yeah, a little over five years ago.

Garrett:
So yeah, you’ve spoken to a lot of audiences and is that something you see often where people or organizations bring you back for a recurring event?

Parker:
Oh yeah, absolutely. There’s a lot of schools that just bring us in every two years, right? So if you have a high school and you have ninth through 12th graders, if you bring us in every two years, then someone might see it in ninth grade and then 10th grade, or they might, or sorry, and then 11th grader, they might see it in 10th grade and then 12th grade. So you get the chance to see it twice before they graduate. We’re always making updates to the presentation, so there’s new information all the time. Or you know, you might be at a junior high that’s seventh through ninth grade, and if we come every two years, you know, there’s always a new group of students coming through. Yeah, a lot of people do that. I think it’s really helpful both at public and private schools.

Garrett:
So you mentioned that the presentation is changing constantly. We’re always updating it with new research and personal accounts and things like that. Can you speak to that a little bit more, Parker?

Parker:
Yeah. So it’s actually pretty cool. This year, 2022, at the beginning of the year, we have been working for, I think it’s fair to say, years on, overhauling our presentation program, updating the scripts. So the presentations are scripted both to, ensure the integrity of the research we’re presenting to say what it does and what it does not say. And also, you know, to make sure that, a presenter is saying everything correctly in front of a young audience, right? We wanna make sure, sure, porn can be a delicate topic. We wanna make sure there’s no innuendos or something that can be misunderstood. And so we’ve spent years, rebuilding the scripts for the different audiences, our slide decks, going through and making sure we have the best, most available, most recent research, the assets that we leave with communities after the presentation’s over, the resources, all of that. And we actually just launched this new series of presentations toward the beginning of this year, around January. And then over the summer we did some, updates just based on feedback and things that we, you know, just minor things, things that we wanted to make better.

Garrett:
Now that we’ve mentioned some of the reviews that people have given Fight The New Drug, I think it might be cool to talk about the script, the slides, just what is a presentation Intel?

Parker:
The presentation obviously is scripted. You know, we’re dealing with sensitive topic, we’re speaking to young people, and we wanna represent the research accurately. And so we completely updated the scripts for all the different audiences, youth audiences, adults, community nights, right? Colleges, we rebuilt the slides. We’re really proud of our slide decks. They’re very engaging. We have new stories, personal accounts that we play videos of during the presentation. All the research is super up to date. It’s pretty incredible what our team’s put together. I’m really proud of it.

Garrett:
So for those listeners and viewers out there that are wanting to book a presentation, we should probably speak to that a little bit.

Parker:
So if you’re one of those people you’re looking to find out more information about what it looks like to host a presentation or have FTND come speak in your community, you can go to ftnd.org/live. Or if you’re on our homepage and you just click the tab on the right hand side, you can click live presentations. And from there it’ll have some brief information. It’ll answer maybe some questions, you might have some common questions, and then there will be a form that you just fill out with some brief information. And our member of our team will actually schedule a call with you after that to answer any questions you have, discuss what a booking looks like, how we can best serve the needs in your community, what audiences we’re gonna be speaking to, and all of those kinds of things.
We do have, a scholarship program that we recently launched. Scholarships are limited and, availability depends on individual circumstances. So we can’t give scholarships to everybody, but that is something that you can talk about with our team, when you, fill out the information and get on a call. So that’s a pretty exciting thing that we’ve been able to debut recently that can help a lot of people. Another thing that I wanted to mention while I was here is Fight The New Drug is currently looking for presenters in different areas of the country. You can apply to be a presenter from the jobs tab on our website. So if you’re someone who has some background in public speaking or maybe sales or, has done really anything in like entertainment or anything like that, you know, you probably have great people skills.
We’re looking for people like that to apply to become presenters. Uh, it’s not a full-time job, it’s a definitely a contracted position. You know, we reach out to you as presentations are available. It’s a really rewarding experience. You know, a lot of people reach out to us asking how they can get more involved or what they can do to help educate. And I would really honestly tell you that the presentation program is one of the best ways to do both of those things. Whether you wanna apply to become a certified presenter for Fight The New Drug, whether you want to host a presentation, you know, it only takes a couple of minutes to do to, to apply to become a presenter or to, reach out for more information about a booking and, and what bookings look like and, and how to get into a school in your community or, how to raise funds if you’re not able to do that. You know, we have resources for these things, and we have a great team here who can help work you through anything. But, you know, if you’re looking to get involved, if you’re looking to make an impact, presentations are a huge part of that, and a lot more people can get involved that way.

Garrett:
Yeah, it’s a great opportunity. Going back to the numbers that we already talked about, we’ve reached over a million people with our live presentations, and again, that wouldn’t have happened without people like the listeners and viewers today who actually take the time to make this happen. So, if you’re listening and you feel like you want to, to host a presentation, to coordinate a presentation, we encourage you to act on that and do it. Thanks for joining us today, Parker.

Parker:
Yeah, thanks for having me. I appreciate it.

FTND Ad:
Hey listeners, thanks so much for listening to this episode of Consider Before Consuming, a podcast by Fight The New Drug. Since 2009, Fight The New Drug has educated over 1 million individuals worldwide about the harms of pornography through our live presentation program. If you’ve made it this far into the episode, we want to offer you 10% off your event booking fees for your first presentation. That’s 10% off your event booking fees for any school, college, company, or community event when you use code, consider. We’ve gotten so many incredible responses from our audience about how much our live events have changed their perspectives on pornography and exploitation, and we’re certain your audience will feel the same. Request that fight the new drug live presentation for your school, college, company or community event Request more information at ftnd.org/live. That’s ftnd.org/live. Don’t forget to use code consider for 10% off your booking fees for your first presentation.

Fight the New Drug collaborates with a variety of qualified organizations and individuals with varying personal beliefs, affiliations, and political persuasions. As FTND is a non-religious and non-legislative organization, the personal beliefs, affiliations, and persuasions of any of our team members or of those we collaborate with do not reflect or impact the mission of Fight the New Drug.

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