‘porn’

When Adults Fail Children—For Life

The Iowa Supreme Court has affirmed the conviction of 18-year-old Jorge Canal, who complied with a 14-year-old friend’s request for a photo of his penis. The young man is now forced to register as a sex offender, meaning his chances of getting a college degree, job, or livable apartment are pretty much ended. According to the court, the girl “generally hung out with teenagers older than herself;” was “only friends” with Canal; thought the picture was sent “only as a joke;” and was not “a means to excite any feelings.” Nevertheless, Canal was convicted of “knowingly disseminating obscene material to…

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What Do We Actually Know About Sex?

I’m returning from New York, where I keynoted a big Planned Parenthood event. It’s wonderful to speak to groups of people who support sexual rights. It always feels like visiting family. (The family that makes you feel welcome, not the family that wonders if you were switched with their “real” child at birth.) After I spoke, I saw an old friend, and the subject of pornography came up (I hardly go anywhere anymore that it doesn’t). An influential sex-positive researcher, she told me she favored full access to sexually explicit materials—“except, of course, snuff films,” she said. That brought me…

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Indianapolis: Constitutionally, Three Strikes and They’re Out

America has triumphed over Indianapolis for the third time. In 1984, religious fundamentalists on the Indianapolis City Council teamed up with phony “feminist” Catharine MacKinnon to outlaw adult entertainment in the city. It was bad enough that the law criminalized making or selling pornography (yes, it criminalized certain kinds of expression); even worse, if a woman felt emotionally or physically injured and believed that the offending man had seen porn, she could sue the porn’s maker or seller for damages. It was a bizarre new way to think about human beings: if a man reads or views porn and then…

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Alabama: 19th Century Too Risque

The drawing below is a vintage 1895 bicycle advertising poster, featuring a nude nymph flying alongside a winged bike. The ad appeared at the height of the European bicycle craze, which liberated women to leave the house without petticoats, chaperone, or horse-and-carriage for the first time. Hahn Family Wines bottles its Cabernet with the famous ad as its label. The State of Alabama has now criminalized the sale of wine in these bottles, citing the law against alcohol advertising featuring “any person(s) posed in an immodest or sensuous manner.” Some say that censorship is a slippery slope. But the slope…

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Anti-Porn Leaders Lie to U.S. Attorney General

A whole lot of Conservative bigshots wrote a letter last week to Attorney General Eric Holder. They lied and lied and lied about pornography, then asked to meet with Holder as soon as possible so they could tell him how to rewrite Justice Department policies in response to these lies. Here are some of their specific lies: * “Pornography addiction is now common among men, women, and even many children.” Even among therapists who believe in “pornography addiction,” virtually no one believes that it is common among women or children. * “Hotels, cable TV, and satellite companies are making tremendous…

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