Politics

Obama Stands Up to Fundamentalists on Censorship

| by Jerome McCollom

I was reading an e-mail from a very, very conservative organization on the religious right, and they were up in arms that the Obama administration has not done any obscenity prosecutions since it came into office.

My opinion, good! When it comes to what consenting adults view and watch, the government should not be involved unless there is an actual victim. For example, child pornography is illegal because children can't consent.

They are abused and scarred for life. While these laws make sense, they are unfortunately abused by stupid district attorneys who threaten to charge 15 year old girls who text pictures of themselves with child pornography felonies. That is not what those laws were made for, of course.  
 
I am a person who advocates public policy and laws should be based on harm reduction. This includes issues such as drugs, prostitution etc. There should be an actual victim, for example. Well, obscenity charges against adults who view material(s) made by/ with other adults, is just absurd. It's a waste of governmental resources, limits liberty and let's face it, pushes the views of the religious right on the rest of America.

Most Americans are religious, but they don't want fundamentalists imposing their views on them.  If someone doesn't want to view material, be it video or print magazines, that they consider obscene, than I have a word of advice. Don't. See, real simple. Don't. Now, if you believe that people should not view this stuff, than you can advocate that they shouldn't, along as you don't use the force of the law to do it. If you want to tell your fellow citizen that if they view this stuff their soul will go to hades, than you have the perfect right to state that drivel. I by the way, have the perfect right to call it what it is, drivel.  
 
 Why should there even be a category called "obscenity" that allows the government to censor what you read or view? Let's face it, books such as The Tropic of Cancer, with no actual images, were censored for decades. In the state of Florida, you be be prosecuted (and persecuted) if what you post online is deemed "obscene" by these latter day prudes. Also, what you write and post can be judged based on the absurd idea of community standards; which allows the most rigid and anti-sex community to prosecute you and put you in jail.

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Under the standards of some of these communities, Hugh Hefner of Playboy might find himself leaving the Playboy Mansion for a stint in jail. It's time to end the war on sex, be it on these inane prosecutions, broad bans on prostitution or even bans on sex toys in Alabama. Basically the Constitution of the United States does not apply according to some of these communities standards. These anti-sex advocates are also, ironically, the same people who want smaller government. I guess not when it comes to  the nation's bedrooms.