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Arizona Senate passes bill deeming pornography a "public health crisis"

A Republican-backed measure in the Arizona State Senate to formally denounce pornography as a public health crisis has passed. The resolution, which does not require the governor's signature for approval, will now go to the secretary of state to be certified. According to text of the bill, the legislation claims that pornography "perpetuates a sexually toxic environment that damages all areas of our society." 

It goes on to claim, without any medical citation, that pornography is "potentially biologically addictive and requires increasingly shocking material for the addiction to be satisfied" leading to "extreme degradation."

"The societal damage of pornography is beyond the capability of the individual to address alone," the measure states. 

Currently, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, which designates and determines if a disease or disorder presents a public health emergency, does not list consumption of pornography as one of its core concerns.  

Introduced by Republican Rep. Michele Udall and backed by six other Republican co-sponsors, the measure also claims that pornography harms the nation's youth by contributing to the "hyper-sexualization of teens."

While the bill first passed in the Arizona state House back in February in a 32-28 vote, the bill stops short of of outlawing or restricting the consumption of pornographic material. 

For now, the measure states that it seeks to "counteract these detrimental effects" by educating individuals about the "harms" and potentially develop "pornography recovery programs" nationwide. 

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