TELECOM Digest OnLine - Sorted: Re: A Shameful Surrender to Pornographers

Re: A Shameful Surrender to Pornographers
30 Apr 2007 23:24:06 GMT

Note: mention is often made of "the secret word" to include in the
subject line to prove that the submission isn't spam. Unfortunately, the
word is very secret. I've yet to see it mentioned in any recent posting,
and I can't find it in the submission guidelines on the website. So I
would like to request that Pat at least point out, without actually
speaking the secret word, how we are to determine the secret word so we
can use it.

[TELECOM Digest Editor's Note: For Gawd's sakes! This will be the last
time -- hopefully -- I have to use the word 'telecom'. Do not make me
say a word like that again in this Family Oriented Digest, please!
Now you were otherwise saying ... PAT]

In article <>,
Cathy Ruse, Christian Science Monitor <> wrote:

> from the April 02, 2007 edition -

> A shameful surrender to pornographers:

> To protect kids, why can't we require porn sites to check IDs?
> By Cathy Ruse

This article is so full of Moral Majority/Christian Right propoganda and
subtle lies it's almost painful to read.

> Last month, Judge Lowell Reed Jr ruled out even this basic measure of
> accountability as a violation of the free-speech rights of porn
> purveyors and their often addicted customers.

Ah, yes. Adults who visit porn sites are "often addicted". That
statement has a lot to do with child protection ... A carefully
crafted sentence to subtly influence the reader's perspective.

> Adding insult to injury, he said he was doing it for the kids:
> "Perhaps we do the minors of this country harm if First Amendment
> protections, which they will with age inherit fully, are chipped away
> in the name of their protection." So, by protecting the right of smut
> peddlers to exploit my daughter, Mr. Reed is actually protecting her
> right to exploit other children when she's an adult. The logic, and
> the arrogance, is breathtaking.

A typical Rush Limbaugh style statement. I've read it several times,
and it still doesn't make any sense. Now she's trying to imply that
"unprotected" children will grow up to exploit children ...

> The Internet has revolutionized the way Americans conduct their daily
> lives. All kinds of pornography -- from puerile convenience-store fare
> to pornographic images of violence and depravity surpassing the worst
> excesses of normal human imagination -- are now just a click away.

The Internet revolutionized our lives, because now we have access to
pornography. And not just pornography, but "depraved and violent"

> Indeed, children are accessing pornography at a previously unmatched
> rate and with unparalleled ease. A recent study published in the
> journal Pediatrics showed that 42 percent of children ages 10 to 17
> had been exposed to online pornography in the past year; 66 percent of
> the exposure was "unwanted."

70% of all statistics are made up on the spot.

66% was "unwanted"? I'm sorry, but I've been surfing the 'net for as
long as it's been around, and in my experience it's very difficult to
accidently end up at a porn site. It's easy to find, sure. But if you
get there, you probably wanted it.

> Nothing in US constitutional law or history suggests that the people
> are powerless to pass laws that further child safety. A 1968 US
> Supreme Court decision ruled that states may consider that "parents
> and others ... who have this primary responsibility for children's
> well-being are entitled to the support of laws designed to aid
> discharge of that responsibility."

"designed to aid" = "enforce the Relious Right agenda".

> Many such laws come to mind. Parents teach their children to say no to
> drugs but the law also forbids drug sales to children.

The law forbids drug sales to everyone. This is not specific to

> Parents warn children of the dangers of guns but the law also throws
> gun dealers in jail if they sell to children.

Gun dealers are prohibited from selling to many classes of people.

> Parents tell kids to stay away from porn but the law also requires video
> and convenience store clerks to check IDs.

Ah, finally something legitimately associated with age. Neatly
included at the end to subtly influence you to assume that there's a
direct correlation with the other two statements.

Also, each statement is "but the law...", not "and the law...", as if
to point out that they're somehow necessarily independent.

What about the laws that require parents to be responsible for the
actions of their children?

> Parental self-help measures are vitally important in protecting
> children online. But they do not eliminate the need for legal
> accountability for Internet pornographers nor do they supplant the
> constitutional authority of Congress to take action to further this
> compelling interest.

Some people just can't grasp the global nature of the Internet. Or they
apparently assume the "our' way is the only "right" way, and the US
should be creating the laws which govern the entire world.

Passing (unconstitutional) laws in the US cannot influence the
activities of websites hosted in foreign countries where such activity
is legal. I suppose we could be more like China, and censor all access
to the Internet ...

> The Child Online Protection Act requires no more of the porn industry
> than what our laws have always required that they make reasonable
> efforts to ensure that children are not among their customers. Reed's
> ruling surrenders the Internet to a ruthless and exploitative industry
> and nullifies an essential prerogative of civil society -- the
> protection of children.

Yes, it does. What she is proposing is akin to having the porn industry
record the name, address and driver's license of every person to visit
an adult bookstore. This goes WAY beyond just age verification. I'm sure
that, if such information were to be recorded, it would NEVER be
accessed by unauthorized persons, and if it were, they would NEVER use
it to further their own agenda.

I'm no fan of porn, and certainly not supportive of child
exploitation. But this is just another attempt to promote the (wrong)
Religious Right agenda.

These people are welcome to their beliefs and opinions, but I wish
they'd stop trying to force them down my throat through legislation.

John Meissen

[TELECOM Digest Editor's Note: Please remember the secret word is very
helpful to use (for me, at least) as the first word in any subject
line which is the same as the first UPPERCASED word in this
reply. Having said this about the secret UPPERCASED word in this
reply, I just bought myself another five hundred or more spams in
email tomorrow where the jackasses will begin their spam posing as a
legitimate letter with the word 'UPPERCASED first word' followed by
their nonsensical foolishness for at least another thousand words or
so. It does not matter if you UPPERCASE it or not, however.

Now a few remarks about the rest of your letter:

You claim drugs are illegal for anyone to use. That is
false. Tobacco products require one to be at least 18 and the
store clerk has to check your age. To use your illustration, what then
prevents the store clerk from making a little 'secret list' of names
(ala Joe McCarthy) copied from ID cards and abusing this list of
names? Alcohol (another drug) is available if you are over 21. What
prevents the bartender/7-Eleven clerk from compiling the same sort of
abusive list?

The only completely non-privacy invasive way would be by simply asking
the potential viewer "check this box if you are over majority age".
And naturally -- but of course! -- kids would never lie about that,
would they? That would be like asking children 'are you old enough to
buy these cigarettes and this beer?' and just taking their word for same.
I've never seen any children lie about things like that, nor about their
sexual urges either, for that matter.

And just because what you term the 'religious right' says something
does not automatically, as an entire subject, make their point of view
wrong. The porno peddlers _still_ want to sell their wares, do they
not? So the government, via the court, has now said "you may not
demand identification in order to view; we rely on filtering to do the
job", but they are going to examine the very same identification in
the process of you making a purchase. The porno guys are still not
going to show off their deep inside pages to you without it anyway.
But at least requiring an _effort_ by the looker to satisfy the
peddler as to age (in actual practice they seem to do the same thing
at the same time anyway to actually buy their stuff) seemed to work
out okay.

My point yesterday was that the very same people who climbed all over
the librarians about 'internet porn filters' not being any good are
now trying to say the same filters are pefectly good enough to use.

Don't forget the UPPERCASED word starting this comment as the secret
word! PAT]

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