You make a good point about the existence of crass human abuse and annihilation of freedom and victimization of the innocent being a much worse offense than lasciviousness.
I would argue, though, that lasciviousness -- the wanton display of a lack of control over one's sexual appetites -- is a vice that leads to the kind of annihilation of freedom and victimization of the innocent of which you speak, both individually and collectively.
If you were to compare a person's life who has given in to lasciviousness with that same person's life when they are in more spiritual control over their appetites, holding those carnal passions in their proper balance, I think you would see more manifestations of abusive behavior toward others in the condition where the appetites are less harnessed -- more victimization, more unbridled release of anger, more captivity to additional vices, and more broken hearts and trust of the loved ones in his/her life.
You are correct that lasciviousness, or lack of self control in any area of life, leads to many problems that must be solved, but it's opposite is even worse.
Consider this. Hitler did not drink or smoke and was a vegetarian, strict about his diet. He was always preaching about morality to his associates and would not have allowed a Las Vegas to develop. Many other dictators are also very strict about controlling lasciviousness such as presently in Iran or the recent Taliban in Afghanistan.
In the real world about half or more of the population would like to go to Las Vegas and let loose a bit and there is not a lot we can do to change this without creating the greater evil of restricting freedom.
It is the duty of the lights of the world to teach freedom first and then in that atmosphere of freedom to teach the people to head toward the path of righteousness or right-use of energy.
Let us pick four instances in the Bible where God caused destruction.
(1) Sodom and Gomorrah There is very little said about why these people deserved destruction except the example of where the crowd wanted to rape the angels, who they though were good looking men.
Now rape is a sin of violence rather than one of sexual pleasure.
(2) The Great Flood. Again the only reason given for God's wrath is "violence."
(3) The destruction of Jerusalem in the days of Jeremiah. Did this destruction come because they were licentious? It doesn't sound like it. Listen to the words of Laman and Lemuel: "And we know that the people who were in the land of Jerusalem were a righteous people; for they kept the statutes and judgments of the Lord, and all his commandments, according to the law of Moses; wherefore, we know that they are a righteous people; and our father hath judged them..." I Nephi 17:22
This is an interesting observation from these two wayward brothers. From their point of view the people in Jerusalem kept all the commandments - which implies they were probably pretty strict about sexual purity.
Why then did destruction come upon them?
Two major reasons were given. Unbelief and violence. They did not believe the messages delivered through the Holy Spirit and sought to destroy the messengers of light.
(4) The generation of the Jews after the crucifixion. Was God mad at them because of licentiousness?
That did not seem to be the problem as they were adamant about stoning or punishing sexual offenders in the days of Jesus.
Again their problem was violence and unbelief. They Crucified Jesus and sought to kill the apostles. Jesus also faulted them for refusing to listen to the message of the gathering.
Now what do we see from the fundamentalists in this age? Their main point of emphasis is on sexual misbehavior which has not been a reason for destruction in the past. The problem that brings a people ripe for destruction has always been the same. A refusal to listen to messages of light and correction and violence which causes people to be afraid to express themselves.
Mastery of sexual energies is, of course, important, but those who are far from mastery will be with us for a long time to come and teachers will fight a no win war if they seek to solve the whole problem in the immediate future.
If we took any religious leader and destroyed all his enemies we would find that most of the "righteous" who were left over still would not have much better control over their sexual energies than those who were destroyed.
However, almost all people know within themselves that violence and suppression of freedom is not right and if they hypocritically go against this understanding they go against their own souls and if the majority support such violence then such a people is in danger of destruction.
Make yourself an honest man, and then you may be sure that there is one rascal less in the world. Thomas Carlyle (1795 - 1881)
Copyright 2004 by J.J. Dewey, All Rights Reserved