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Netflix Teams with Christian Group to Tackle Toxic Sexual Norms Among Millennials

01-31-2018
LiberatedPoster

Netflix will debut a Christian organization's documentary on the American hookup culture and how it is leading to the sexual exploitation of millennials.

"Liberated: The New Sexual Revolution" will premiere Thursday and the film attempts to tackle the normalization of sexual exploitation on college campuses and the impact the porn industry is having on millennials. 

The documentary follows several students on their spring break trip to Florida. 

"Our goal in starting the project was to film many aspects of the sexual culture today, and we actually did," film's director, Benjamin Nolot told the OC Weekly. "We also shot footage discussing slut shaming, bikini baristas, and the porn industry. We got back and came across all this footage of girls being groped and felt like, 'We need to go back.'

According to a 2016 study by the Bureau of Justice Statistics, one in four college-age women have experienced sexual assault. 

The Christian nonprofit group, Exodus Cry, is behind the film and this is the group's second documentary exploring the roots behind sex-trafficking.

The group's first film, "Nefarious: Merchant of Souls," was released in 2003 and shares the stories of women and children sold into sex-slavery. 

"With Nefarious we followed the story of sex trafficking victims," Nolot blogged on exoduscry.com. "Many of them experienced powerful life-changing encounters with God."

"But it was the image of men lining up to purchase these women and children that haunted me more than anything," he added.

That led Nolot on the journey to shoot "Liberated."

"We decided to turn our cameras toward the culture to examine what it means to be a man, what it means to be a woman, and what it means to be a sexual being in today's world," he wrote. 

Although the film does not have overtly Christian themes it does approach the topic from a biblical worldview.

Minister Rebecca Bender is a trafficking survivor and is a board member of Exodus Cry. 

She told CBN News that she hopes "Liberated" will open people's eyes to the sex problem in America. 

"We're raising three and four and five-year-old little boys and girls in a culture where soft-core porn has become mainstream media," she said. "An example—every billboard, every commercial, every window dressing in the local mall. That kind of stuff is always before them. We do need to be aware of how it's going to affect them."
  
"I think Liberated does a really great job at showing how far it's gone," Bender added. 

Bender was just 18-years-old when she was trafficked by her boyfriend of six months. 

"I was an average, all-American kid from a loving family," she told TODAY

She said today's hook-up culture "grooms" college-aged women and makes them easy targets for traffickers. 

"Traffickers will specifically target girls who are actively involved or desensitized to the hookup culture," she said. "The lure is—'You're doing it anyway so we might as well get money.'"

"He tricks her to continue to do something she's already doing with the dangling carrot of—she'll be able to buy a home someday. Of course, she never gets the home because he takes all the money."

The ministry shared on their website that they want to see a shift in America's culture. 

"We reached the conclusion that we will never be able to stop the sexual exploitation of women and children if we don't shift the pornographic culture that fuels it," the website read. 

CBN News reached out to Netflix for comment on the documentary and why it decided to back it; but, did not get a response by the time of this article's publication.
 

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