1994-03-27 - Re: Censorship–I Demand a Retraction!

Header Data

From: Brad Huntting <huntting@glarp.com>
To: tcmay@netcom.com (Timothy C. May)
Message Hash: 9ff5435fa11bc89986a4ea7c6856f9f27940e50725de3e485f6dc2fe0b91d333
Message ID: <199403271811.LAA13736@misc.glarp.com>
Reply To: <199403271001.CAA13468@mail.netcom.com>
UTC Datetime: 1994-03-27 17:10:53 UTC
Raw Date: Sun, 27 Mar 94 09:10:53 PST

Raw message

From: Brad Huntting <huntting@glarp.com>
Date: Sun, 27 Mar 94 09:10:53 PST
To: tcmay@netcom.com (Timothy C. May)
Subject: Re: Censorship--I Demand a Retraction!
In-Reply-To: <199403271001.CAA13468@mail.netcom.com>
Message-ID: <199403271811.LAA13736@misc.glarp.com>
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain

>>> "Because children read forums, I agree that obscene language 
>>> should be banned....

>> There's excellent essay on obscenity in Kurt Vonegut's _Psalm
>> Sunday_ which I recommend to anyone who doesn't find this statement
>> horrendously offensive.


> P.S. I can't _believe_ a Cypherpunk is actually advocating censorship.


Gee Tim...  I think we might have to send you back to the indoctrination
center for some vocab' rehabilitation.  After all, there are probably
children reading this list.

If I recall (and it's been a couple years since I read this),
Vonnegut makes the argument that the whole concept of obscenity
and it's censorship is a Victorian thought control device.  Whether
it's TV executives putting per hour quota's on forbidden words, or
yokeles getting _Lysistrada_ pulled from highschool classics courses,
it's censorship and it's obscene.

> As for kids reading this list or the Net in general, and seeing
> "obscenity" on it, how is this any different or any worse than kids
> sneaking a look at their Dad's "Busty Babes" (times have changed since
> I was a kid) or tuning in to a shot of naked butts on "NYPD Blue"?

Heaven forbid!

> What about young and impressionable children being exposed to atheism
> on the Net? Or to cultural values that offend their families? Or to
> any of a hundred other horrors?

> The only solution to this "problem" in a free society is for _parents_
> to control their own children, not to apply censorship and obscenity
> laws. 

Indeed, chain them to the bed and put bricks on their heads.

> And practically speaking, it's impossible anyway. The Internet is
> worldwide, with no centralized point of censorship. Tipper Gore can no
> more hope to censor the publication of "dirty" music lyrics on the Net
> than the Ayotollah can hope to stop publication of recipes for pork.

> It's a whole new world out there.

> Kurt Vonnegut: welcome to the monkey house. If Kurt really called for
> censorship, I'll have to reevaluate my respect for him. Too bad Frank
> Zappa isn't available to have a chat with him about the nature of
> censorship. 

Think about it Tim...  When I saw Vonnegut speak at C.U. in the
80's, he spent the majority of his speech damning the christian
right for it's neo-victorian book banning activities.


P.S.  Thanx for the correction, it's Vonnegut (two n's) and _Palm
Sunday_, not "Psalm".  All other spelling errors are deliberate
can be placed with extreme prejudice in the offended readers