Ross Spano files bill declaring pornography a ‘public health crisis’

spano, ross

Does Florida have a pornography problem? State Rep. Ross Spano thinks so.

That’s why the Dover Republican proposed a resolution that would recognize pornography is creating a “public health crisis” in the Sunshine State.

According to the proposal: “The public health crisis created by pornography and acknowledges the need for education, prevention, research, and policy change to protect the citizens of this state.”

Like other bills filed by Florida GOP lawmakers, similar legislation has already been introduced and passed in additional Red states.

More than a year ago, Utah Governor Gary Herbert signed a resolution declaring pornography a “public health hazard.”

Tennessee lawmakers approved a joint resolution in June that “recognizes pornography as a public health hazard leading to a broad spectrum of individual and public health impacts and [social] harms.”

In Virginia,  Republican Bob Marshall filed a resolution last December to declare pornography “a public health hazard leading to a broad spectrum of individual and public health impacts and societal harms.” The text of his proposal calls for “education, prevention, research, and policy change at the community and societal level in order to address the pornography epidemic that is harming the people of the Commonwealth and the nation.”

Spano was unavailable for comment Tuesday morning.

Mitch Perry

Mitch Perry has been a reporter with Extensive Enterprises since November of 2014. Previously, he served five years as political editor of the alternative newsweekly Creative Loafing. Mitch also was assistant news director with WMNF 88.5 FM in Tampa from 2000-2009, and currently hosts MidPoint, a weekly talk show, on WMNF on Thursday afternoons. He began his reporting career at KPFA radio in Berkeley and is a San Francisco native who has lived in Tampa since 2000. Mitch can be reached at [email protected].


  • David Bruderly

    September 19, 2017 at 3:38 pm

    If Republicans want to solve a major public health problem, focus on real problems, like regulating the sale, ownership and possession of semi-automatic handguns and semi-automatic rifles, high-capacity magazines and silencers. Laws that empower people to use these commercial products to resolve disputes have destroyed more lives and caused more violence, injury and death than any pornographic sex movie, magazine, book or web site.

  • Amazed

    September 19, 2017 at 9:42 pm

    This is idiotic beyond words. The first question that anyone should ask has to be why this man is expending time, energy, and (our) tax dollars on this. Sir, are there not worthwhile causes to pursue rather than trying to have a personal choice (reading or looking at what you deem to be pornography) turned into a public health issue? There exists a body of criminal law to address sexual wrongs. Even if Mr. Spano is well-intentioned albeit misguided, the law of unintended consequences will soon be triggered: (1)public agencies, already bloated, will grow by demanding and getting add’l tax dollars to fill their ranks with porno-counselors by whatever name called; (2)an entirely new line of criminal defense will open to the misguided who direct their sexuality inappropriately. Not only will they have a “he/she consented” defense, but they will have an “I was sick” defense. Much like the person who eats poorly, too much, doesn’t exercise and sings the blues when they have a stroke or heart attack; (3)some entirely new legal causes of action will be pushed (why am I thinking a porcine lawyer from Orlando?) Just think-ads to join class actions to be brought by men who developed breast psychoses from a Playboy subscription. They can’t work, they can’t sleep, they can’t bear the sight of anything cone-shaped. To say nothing of women who claim similar hurts and fear objects of other shapes. All of which, of course, can be assuaged by money damages, from which a fee is earned. And with the fee can be bought more advertising busses, more TV advertising time and more ways to convince everyone that they are victims. Geez, folks, there is a simple and cheap preventative to the “public health hazard.” Don’t buy the magazines; don’t watch the movies; don’t surf “those” sites. And as Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young once said, “Teach Your Children Well.” Mr. Spano-think things through. Spend your time and the public’s money on worthwhile endeavors. And if it means anything to you, I’m a Republican, too.

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