1996-07-20 - Re: Filtering out Queers is OK

Header Data

From: mpd@netcom.com (Mike Duvos)
To: cypherpunks@toad.com
Message Hash: d536f3d76efe566c62064b9cb050c8c8ae597358501131c3e0fa0fd2b4c0b77b
Message ID: <199607191957.MAA03907@netcom14.netcom.com>
Reply To: <v03007605ae158803ab26@[]>
UTC Datetime: 1996-07-20 07:40:17 UTC
Raw Date: Sat, 20 Jul 1996 15:40:17 +0800

Raw message

From: mpd@netcom.com (Mike Duvos)
Date: Sat, 20 Jul 1996 15:40:17 +0800
To: cypherpunks@toad.com
Subject: Re: Filtering out Queers is OK
In-Reply-To: <v03007605ae158803ab26@[]>
Message-ID: <199607191957.MAA03907@netcom14.netcom.com>
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain

David Sternlight <david@sternlight.com> writes:

 > This is simply incorrect. It is a supportable advocacy for
 > most adults, but children's minds tend to be like
 > sponges--everything they take in (up until a certain age) is
 > thought to be true, interesting, worth experimenting with,
 > based on authority, etc. Read Piaget.

Piaget was very good at "proving" how fundamentally different the
minds of children were from those of adults, and at constructing
elaborate webs of complex terminology and doctrine to support his

Unfortunately, his experiments suffered from obvious flaws.  I
recall one in which he trained a child to relate the terms "more"
and "less" to whether the same amount of fluid was poured into a
taller or shorter container.  Piaget concluded that this
demonstrated that children have no quantitative skills.  Others
had a less flattering description of the research, and realized
that all Piaget had accomplished was to teach his subjects
incorrect meanings for a few common words.  Similar defects can
be found is most of his other constructs, and better designed
experiments do not demonstrate the effects he claimed.

 > What is more, a parent can't watch them every second while
 > they're on the net, nor will they ask all the questions they
 > should about certain material they see. I'd no more permit
 > young kids to view gay or bestial or porno sites on the net
 > than I'd let them view propaganda for how good pigs taste
 > (unsupervised), if I were an orthodox Jew.

Again, we are applying a standard to the Net which has never been
applied to libraries.  Any orthodox Jewish child can read all he
or she wants in a library about the wonders of pig-eating,
without any possibility of parental supervision or disclosure of
their un-Jewish interests.

But it is now being advocated that on the Net, no child has a
right to view even a syllable of any information their parents do
not want them to see.  While gay or bestial sex is frequently the
excuse for such antics, it is clear that parents will be using
this new technology to impose a level of control over their
childrens' minds which has heretofore never been possible.  This
should worry us all.

 > When they've passed the developmental stage (I rely on the
 > experts in this field for that determination) where they
 > have independent critical judgement and the security to
 > exercise it, THEN I would open up their horizons.

Generally, very young children do not have the neural wiring in
place to suspend emotional reactions to imagery based on
intellectual considerations. Seeing an picture of someone being
hurt in a movie causes them the same emotional pain as seeing
someone hurt in real life, even though they may know perfectly
well that the former image is fictional in nature.

Almost all children develop this important critical faculty by
the age of 12, by which point, they manage to only be sickened by
the evening news, and not by the latest "Nightmare on Elm Street"

While limiting the "horizons" of persons in their middle to late
teens is often justified by arguments about developmental stages,
the truth is that it is simply an attempt by their keepers to
control how they think and to what views, mostly political and
social in nature, they are exposed to.

 > I speak as a father who has raised four children who turned
 > out to be independent beings to successful adulthood and
 > families of their own, not as a theoretician.

Do they troll on Usenet too? :)