Friday, December 12, 2008

Gee, Thanks a Lot, MOM.

The last thing is, I think child porn of any type and brutal sexualized violent material is unhealthy, and kills your soul a little bit every time you see it and get off on it. If you want to indulge in it, and you are not harming anyone, fine -- but I feel it is unhealthy, cancerous. It's not something kind to do for yourself, even if it gives you immediate gratification.

And if we, as a society, can support the right for this type of porn to flourish and be distributed -- we are not separate, without responsibility, off-the-hook. How quaint to say, "I support the right to view drawn child porn, but I hold no responsibility for my fellow man or woman or child who may be psychologically crippled or physically harmed as a result of it."

The question, for me, is even if we only save ONE child from rape or attempted rape, or even just lots of uncomfortable hugs from Creepy Uncle Dave, is that not worth leaving a couple naked bodies out of a comic?

--"Jess", from Neil Gaiman's blog

I once would have thought that, steeped in feminism, which usually rejects the overbearing, patriarchal notion that Daddy Knows Best, some folks would be wary of falling into an overbearing, matriarchal position where Mommy Knows Best.

I find it somewhat amusing to read the Occasional Superheroine blog and see a hesitance to voice certain opinions for fear of the reaction; welcome to my blog, structured so as to remain anonymous while I challenge a few feminist orthodoxies (such as porn causes rape). Or, hell, Scott the Mad Thinker's blog. (His even better, since my readership seems to be minimal at the moment, while he still gets all kinds of criticism for doing the "There's so much rape in comics! No there's not!" back-and-forth again.) Negative reactions? Oh yeah. That goes multiple ways.

So Valerie is all in favor of banning drawn representations of children having sex. And, you know, she's wrong to think that way, but it's her right to have a wrong opinion. And hell, if Neil Gaiman couldn't convince her (like he ultimately convinced "Jess"), if a dogpile of opposing opinions on her own blog doesn't sway her, hey, fine, I won't try to change her mind. Write her off as one of the lost, get on with life.

I do, however, think this viewpoint ought to be opposed. And I could reiterate and regurgitate many of the points raised by so many others in that comments section. I've said most of them in one form or another before, and may again, but this time around, I want to come at the issue from a somewhat different angle.

So to Valerie and those who think like her: Cut it out. You're not my goddamn Mom.

I don't care what your views on drawn child porn are. I don't care what my views on drawn child porn are. What I do care about is that you in effect want to tell me I can't do something over some nebulous worry that it will cause something bad down the road. You'd have a better chance of convincing me of the evils of cigarettes and alcohol, and look how well Prohibition and the War On Drugs worked.

As a responsible adult, I take measured risks every day, as do we all, and just as I wouldn't expect to have my own right to drive a car, drink, smoke, own a gun removed because other people are idiots who are too irresponsible to keep from doing themselves or others an injury, so too do I resent the idea that just because other people are jackasses who can't or won't control their urges, I should have the right to view material that other people dislike taken away from me.

No, I neither need nor enjoy Simpsons porn (blech). That's not the point. Whether or not I choose to indulge in any of this stuff should always be my decision, not yours. And no matter how much you dress it up by referencing the bad acts of others, the end result is that you're looking to take away some of my rights.

Really, what a patronizing matronizing attitude! "Don't run with scissors! You'll put an eye out! And that porn is going to give you soul cancer!"

You don't like it? Fine. Want to protest it? Lovely, be my guest. But if you want to play Mommy, tell me I can't do something (for "your own good", it's always for your own good), and then run to Papa Government to spank me when I go ahead and do it anyway, that's when I tell you to cram it.

If issues of Free Speech fail to convince you, then let's settle on the more basic premise of you not telling me what I can or cannot do.

Especially if you have similar issues about others telling you what you can and can't do.

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