Archbishop joins rejections against pornography congress in Colombia

Jasjot Singh

The Archbishop of Barranquilla (Colombia), Msgr. Pablo Salas Anteliz, joined the voices of rejection against holding an international congress on pornography in this city and called on the municipality to offer families proposals that strengthen human dignity and Don’t just focus on the economy.

From June 12 to 15, the Lalexpo 2022 Adult Entertainment Congress will be held in Barranquilla, which brings together the pornography industry.

Initially, the venue was going to be Cartagena, but the Mayor’s Office denied the permit due to the rejection of the citizens and considering it “a lewd event for the city.”

In a statement published on May 29, Monsignor Salas Anteliz called “on the municipal administration and the economic associations of the city, so that they look a little beyond the economic results and contribute to the sum of their efforts to offer our society and especially to families, children, adolescents and young people, proposals that contribute to strengthening dignity, self-esteem and respect for all people”.

Hours earlier, when the mayor of Barranquilla, Jaime Pumarejo, approached to vote in the presidential elections on Sunday, a woman publicly demanded that he “don’t let porn get to you to the city.

Pumarejo’s response was that it was not in his hands to decide if the pornography congress could take place. “The law and the Constitution say that I do not have the power to say whether or not it can be done.” “The Mayor’s Office cannot say which event it likes and which it doesn’t,” he argued.

However, on May 27, the Attorney General’s Office sent an alert to Jaime Pumarejo to express its opposition to the holding of the international congress on pornography and remind him that Cartagena denied permission because that event “contributes nothing to the fight against sexual exploitation that has affected Colombia so much”.

In his statement, the Archbishop indicated that he had received “messages of concern” from many families, professionals, women’s organizations and businessmen, “expressing their rejection of the holding in the city of Barranquilla of the Congress of the Porn Industry, which was bravely rejected in Cartagena and admitted in our beloved city”.

“I as Archbishop also join their voices of rejection. It cannot be possible that when it comes to money everything goes, everything is admissible as if money were the most important value in a society and the greatest concern of its rulers, ”he said.

The Prelate pointed out that it is “naive to ignore the dark side of the consumption of sex online or on the network, which promotes the misnamed ‘porn industry.’ As it is also naive to ignore the serious problems that we are experiencing in this matter in terms of sexual violence and all forms of aggression against our children, adolescents and young people.

Pornography generates “profound disorders” and affects “negatively the physical, mental and spiritual health” of people, he said.

In this sense, he recalled the words of Pope Francis to the participants of the Congress on Children’s Dignity in the Digital World, held in Rome in October 2017.

“The spread of increasingly extreme pornography and other inappropriate uses of the Internet not only cause disorders, addictions and serious harm even among adults – the Pope pointed out – but also affects the symbolic representation of love and relationships between the sexes. It would be a serious delusion to think that a society in which abnormal consumption of online sex is widespread among adults will be able to effectively protect minors”.

Bishop Salas said that as the Archdiocese “we are committed to this direction” and therefore on June 2 at 10:00 am, it will be broadcast on social networks, from the Archdiocesan Curia, “a participatory and ecumenical space, so that various voices, from their realities and specialties, express their points of view on the implications of the event that they want to program in the city”.

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