April 09, 2004

Solicitation

I am by no means a big fan of p0rn0graphy. Some of the emails I get contain pictures that seem to me about as explicit and arousing as a gynecological exam (well, maybe some people find those arousing), I'm forever annoyed at having to delete spam comments from this blog pointing to unsavory sites, and I truly worry about what my five year old will encounter when, a few years from now, he begins clicking around the Internet. That said, I found this analysis by Eugene Volokh on what form the coming crackdown on pornography would take to be extremely disturbing. Read it, and the Baltimore Sun story to which he links.

To briefly summarize, Volokh sees no way to approach the problem without first, presumably, being able to uphold the legality of blocking Internet sites, and then, well, blocking them.

It seems to me that this approach is aimed ultimately at preventing consumers from being able to buy the stuff. What I've always wondered is this: In most jurisdictions in the United States, it's illegal to both solicit sex for money and to provide it for money, unless, apparently, a camera is present. It seems to me that if there are real victims of the skin trade, it's those who perform in the films. Whether or not the odd arrest would be likely ultimately to help or hurt them (I tend to think, in all honesty, it would be the latter) is another question altogether, but I think cracking down on obscenity is foolish when a great deal of the p0rn0graphy industry is based on exchanging money for sex.

Posted by Ideofact at April 9, 2004 11:42 PM
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