Having An Affair With A Modem

A Fox "sexpert" argues that getting of to porn when you're married or attached is a form of adultery:

"They assume their partner understands that using porn, at least beyond a magazine like Playboy, is the equivalent of having an actual affair."

Julian Sanchez thinks this is "obviously insane". Ross doesn't:

Hard-core porn, in turn, is nothing more than an indirect way of paying someone to fulfill the same sort of voyeuristic fantasies: It's prostitution in all but name, filtered through middlemen, magazine editors, and high-speed internet connections. Is it as grave a betrayal as cheating on your spouse with a co-worker? Not at all. But is it on a moral continuum with adultery? I don't think it's insane to say yes.

Well, "not insane" is not exactly a strong defense. Wilkinson responds to Ross:

I think this only makes sense from the perspective of a once almost universal, now simply common, and in any case very silly assumption that sex with a spouse is the one permissible form of sex. So, any deviation from that one case of good sex is some grade of bad sex.

And Ross continues to defend his position. The reason Ross is unpersuasive to me is that the core sin of adultery, from where I sit, is infidelity with another actual person. The physical absence of such makes a huge difference. But then I'm a dissident on sexual matters as far as the Catholic church is concerned and Ross isn't. His view is coherent, if a little, to my mind, strained.

2006-2011 archives for The Daily Dish, featuring Andrew Sullivan

How to Cook Spaghetti Squash (and Why)

Cooking for yourself is one of the surest ways to eat well. Bestselling author Mark Bittman teaches James Hamblin the recipe that everyone is Googling.

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register.

blog comments powered by Disqus

Video

How to Cook Spaghetti Squash (and Why)

Cooking for yourself is one of the surest ways to eat well.

Video

Before Tinder, a Tree

Looking for your soulmate? Write a letter to the "Bridegroom's Oak" in Germany.

Video

The Health Benefits of Going Outside

People spend too much time indoors. One solution: ecotherapy.

Video

Where High Tech Meets the 1950s

Why did Green Bank, West Virginia, ban wireless signals? For science.

Video

Yes, Quidditch Is Real

How J.K. Rowling's magical sport spread from Hogwarts to college campuses

Video

Would You Live in a Treehouse?

A treehouse can be an ideal office space, vacation rental, and way of reconnecting with your youth.

Just In