Pornography, Obscenity, Freedom of Speech and Freedom of Expression

October 8, 2010 at 12:49 PM

Recently, the situation at the Loveland Museum in Colorado has highlighted the idea that pornography/obscenity masquerading as art is acceptable because to many, it comes under the banner of “freedom of expression” and “freedom of speech.”

Interestingly enough though, for those of us who disagree with and have taken the time to voice our opinions against the display of such puerile,obscene, and blasphemous “art,” we are shouted down and told to shut up.  We are told that we have no right to state our opinions and this world needs to be freed from religious zealots.

Comments like these are issued by people who claim to fully endorse freedom of expression and freedom of speech.  However, it is obviously clear that they only support these ideals when they agree with their particular position.  They do not support my right to express myself verbally when that opinion sends a gray cloud over their mindset.

That does not surprise me because even though people claim to want to “live and let live,” they really do not.  They want to live and let live only so far as people agree with THEM.  They do not want to hear my opinion and given the opportunity, they would shut me down from exercising my freedom of speech and expression solely because it angers them.  Too bad.  If they have the right to express themselves by either creating a piece of junk people call “art” or they support the artist who takes the time to create that junk, then I have every right to express my dislike for that same piece of art AND their opinion of it.  That’s the way it works here in America and until or unless we become a dictatorship, I will continue to express my voice in spite of the fact that liberal fascists do not like what I have to say.

On the heels of discussing the infamous artwork in the Colorado museum, which depicts Jesus on the receiving end of a sexual act, this email was sent to me from a person by the name of SAL:

Sal said…QUOTE:  The nature of art is similar to the nature of religion, in that it isn’t your place to decide for anyone else. Regardless of his intent to offend, it isn’t your business to decide what art should or should not be made or displayed. It isn’t my business to decide what religion you are allowed to be, it isn’t your business to decide what art he is allowed to make, or the gallery is allowed to exhibit. UNQUOTE

In response, let me just say that it’s obviously SOMEONE’S job to decide IF, WHEN, and WHERE artwork is displayed, isn’t it? Art does not simply appear on walls. People who decide what to put up in their museums, for how long they should keep said art up and why they should place it up, do so because that is their job. My job is to determine whether or not I agree with them. If I do not agree with them, of COURSE I can state that and whether anyone else LIKES it is totally beside the point. No one has a right to tell me that I am unable to exercise my freedom of expression or freedom of speech in this regard than I can FORCE the museum to take their offensive artwork down.

Of course, spoken like a true idealist and liberal fascist. The problem of course, is that Sal has decided that I cannot decide what my own opinion should be, nor should I voice that opinion because it OFFENDS him.

SAL CONTINUED…QUOTE: Additionally, very few people in America support extreme Muslim reactions to images of Muhammed, most people in this country believe in both the freedom to worship as one sees fit and the right to create images as one sees fit. I would be interested to see ONE example of anyone in this country, who isn’t an extreme Islamist himself, supporting the death threats and other over-reactions that have come with images of Muhammed. UNQUOTE

No, he wouldn’t. And it would be interesting to know where he dug up the facts as he proclaims them.

SAL WENT FURTHER TO SAY…QUOTE:
Christians in this country have more political weight and cultural pull than any other single group. Your silly example of one Black child using centuries of racial inequality against you ONCE, without mentioning the lifetime of advantages you’ve had from being White in America, is shallow, ignorant, debasing and incredibly self-absorbed, in addition to being irrelevant to the topic at hand.

This man created a piece of art that you don’t like, okay, don’t look at it. This woman took things into her own hands and decided to destroy something that doesn’t belong to her. If someone came and destroyed the art in your church because they don’t believe the same thing you do, how would you feel about it?
It’s called the social contract d*******. Maybe if you read a f***ing newspaper on occasion you’d realize we phased out rule by religious zealot a few generations ago.
UNQUOTE

And yet, Sal says that Christians in this country have more political weight and cultural pull than any other single group. Which is it? If I were grading Sal’s paper, I would give him a “D” because he is not only repetitious, but has contradicted himself several times. Sal needs to grow a brain and try to figure out what it is he wants to say before simply allowing his fingers to wander over the keyboard. If I had the patience required to deal with someone as self-aggrandizing as Sal, I would ask him to rewrite this, correct all misspelled words, figure out his thesis, and then stick with it.

The truth of the matter is that people like Sal enjoy telling me to shut up, to look away, to simply deal with it by not dealing with it.  They however, do not follow their own advice.

Sal’s sweeping generalizations and insipid arguments make no sense.

Sal has the temerity to take me to task for something that he is unwilling to do. My comments obviously bothered Sal, but instead of turning away from them, Sal decided he had to comment on them in order to try to insult me into silence. Sal does not even appear intelligent enough to realize that HE is doing what he accuses ME of doing.  But this is what liberal fascists do because they are hypocrites to the core.

I don’t know, but I personally think Sal’s time would be better spent by sticking hot pokers in his eyes. At least then he would have the satisfaction of knowing that he has actually accomplished something as opposed to trying to best me with intelligence that he simply does not have.

So what is the problem here?  There are several.  First, let’s define pornography.  According to the Free Dictionary by Farlex, pornography is:

QUOTE … the depiction of sexual behavior that is intended to arouse sexual excitement in its audience. UNQUOTE

During the twentieth century, you may recall that Americans debated the subject of pornography and whether pornographic material should be legally protected or banned.

Those who believe pornography must be protected argue that the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution guarantees freedom of expression, including sexual expression.

The First Amendment states QUOTE:  Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances. UNQUOTE

Regarding the First Amendment, in the area of free speech, does this include the right to speak your mind by using offensive language that could start a fight or incite a riot? Is Freedom of Speech then synonymous with freedom of expression, which would then allow the right to condemn the U.S. government and extending to offensive symbolic actions involving no written or spoken words, like burning the U.S. flag?

Does Freedom of the Press protect the right to publish scurrilous, defamatory, and libelous material? If not, can the government prohibit the publication of such material before it goes to print?  It is obviously not as clear cut as many would like us to believe.

Regarding pornography, traditional opponents of pornography raise moral concerns, arguing that the First Amendment does not protect expression that corrupts people’s behavior. Toward the end of the century, even some feminists advocated suppressing pornography because it perpetuates gender stereotypes and promotes violence against women.

Pornography has been regulated by the legal standards that govern the concept of Obscenity, which refers to things society may consider disgusting, foul, or immoral, and may include material that is blasphemous. Pornography is limited to depictions of sexual behavior and may not be obscene.

A good definition of Obscenity is QUOTE:  The character or quality of being obscene; an act, utterance, or item tending to corrupt the public morals by its indecency or lewdness. UNQUOTE

The U.S. Supreme Court has established that obscenity is not protected by the First Amendment. However, it has not been easy to define what is and is not obscene in all cases.

The following is a quote from Free Dictionary by FARLEX.  QUOTE:  In 1957, the U.S. Supreme Court, in roth v. united states, 354 U.S. 476, 77 S. Ct. 1304, 1 L. Ed. 2d 1498, stated that obscenity is “utterly without redeeming social importance” and therefore is not protected by the First Amendment. The Roth test for obscenity is “whether to the average person, applying contemporary community standards, the dominant theme of the material taken as a whole appeals to a prurient [lewd or lustful] interest.” The Roth test proved difficult to use because every term in it eluded a conclusive definition.

The Supreme Court added requirements to the definition of obscenity in a 1966 case involving the English novel Memoirs of a Woman of Pleasure, more commonly known as Fanny Hill. In A Book Named “John Cleland’s Memoirs of a Woman of Pleasure” v. Attorney General, 383 U.S. 413, 86 S. Ct. 975, 16 L. Ed. 2d 1, the Court concluded that to establish obscenity, the material must, aside from appealing to the prurient interest, be “utterly without redeeming social value” and “patently offensive because it affronts contemporary community standards relating to the description of sexual matters.” The phrase “utterly without redeeming social value” allowed a loophole for pornographers. UNQUOTE

Many of the people who are in favor of the “art” display of Professor Chagoya, who teaches at Stanford University – parents, take note – because they say he has the right to express himself and he has the right to exercise free speech.  As mentioned, these same individuals complain when people like myself exercise OUR rights of freedom of expression and freedom of speech when it disagrees with THEIR opinion, or expression of that same right.

Who is kidding whom?  Those who glorify the ideals of freedom of speech and expression glorify it only for themselves and others who agree with them.  They do NOT want me to exercise those rights because my opinion differs and offends them.

Our friend Sal told me to turn away, to not look, to ignore.  Yet, he did not follow his own advice about my comments, my thoughts, and ultimately, my freedom of speech and expression.  He felt the need to chastise me for holding and verbalizing my opinion about the situation in the Colorado museum in which flagrantly obscene material was displayed.

The reality is that people like Sal are one-sided hypocrites.  They SAY they want people to exercise their rights of free speech and expression, but in truth they only want that IF people agree with THEM.  They do not want to hear my opinion that the idea of some piece of artwork portraying Jesus on the receiving end of some sexual act is not only blasphemous, but patently obscene, by the definition previously provided.

What amazes me as I read through the comments on the museum’s forum is how many people thought it was wonderful to take their young children to this art show.  Why?  So they can discuss what the artist meant.  After all, artwork is open to interpretation, is it not?  Sure it is, so let’s sit down and have a huge discussion about what Chagoya means by placing Jesus Christ in a situation in which He would never have found Himself.  What could Chagoya possibly mean by that depiction?

Well apparently, Chagoya is protesting two things:

  • Racism, and
  • The problems of sexual abuse in the Roman Catholic Church

I am not sure how Chagoya’s work of garbage portrays his problem with racism at all.  As for his problem with some of the priests in the Roman Catholic Church, I am not sure why Chagoya chose to place Jesus in his depiction.  After all, would it not have been more accurate if Chagoya had placed a priest in that depiction?

The reality of Chagoya’s work of trash is that people can go to the museum and pretend to be highbrow.  They can sit down over a cup of lukewarm tea with their pinkies pointed to the ceiling as they discuss the many prints and paintings that surround them as if they are somehow better, more intelligent, more capable and free than you and I.

These individuals who take their ten-year olds, and fourteen-year olds to such a display can pretend that they are not corrupting the morals of these minors, all the while allowing them to stare at a scene in which Jesus is fully engaged in a reprehensible act that would have caused Him to sin, something He never did.

Yet, ask these same people when they are going to take these same children to see an X-rated movie, and they will look at you with shocked expressions as if you have stabbed them in the heart.  To them, the art on display has absolutely nothing to do with the contents of an X-rated movie.  The printed medium of art SAYS something.  It is designed to make you THINK, to DISCUSS, to CREATE a sense of CURIOSITY in the viewer.

X-rated movies they say, are nothing but smut, designed to arouse.  The problem with people like this aside from the fact that they are hypocrites is that they are not intelligent enough to realize the obvious mistake they are making.

What is the difference between a PAINTING of a nude woman and an artfully photographed nude woman?  In one, the artist used PAINT and BRUSH.  In the other, the artist used CAMERA and LIGHTS.  Yet, in the former, we see them in museums everywhere.  In the latter, they are relegated to magazines in areas behind the counter.

It is clear that for America at least, the idea of pornography and obscenity is confusing.  People who believe it is fine to highlight obscenity in art museums are the same people that would look askance at someone who they saw flipping through a “girlie” magazine.

The problem is obvious to everyone but themselves.  While they are busy looking down their haughty noses at John Q. Public for looking at a photographed image of a woman – calling it pornography – they have no difficulty looking at prints and paintings that are classified as “art” that show not only the same thing, but far worse.

So what’s it going to be, folks?  When does freedom of expression and freedom of speech cross the line to obscenity?  It is based on my opinion, yours, or someone else’s?

The reality seems to be that here in America, if the subject of the art is Jesus Christ being placed in a derogatory situation that is what the Bible would call SIN, to many that is perfectly acceptable as long as it is a drawing or a painting.  If we take Jesus out of the picture and replace him with a woman, then it becomes objectionable even though it is still a print or painting.  Why?  Because in that latter case, the woman portrayed in the scene is being abused, or taken advantage of.

It is very clear to me as I stated in the last show, it is perfectly permissible to harass, hate, and castigate Christians because we are not expected to fight back.  When we DO fight back, we are called hypocrites because we obviously do not LOVE as Jesus loved apparently.

People who argue this point have obviously never read the gospels.  They have never read the words of John the Baptist, or Jesus Himself.  Further, they have not read parts of the epistles written by Paul the apostle.  These men could be and were brutally truthful at times, calling a spade a spade.

Today though, Christians are supposed to turn the other cheek and essentially become a doormat for the world.  I don’t think so.  As a Christian, I am not about to create situations in which I must defend myself, or in which I invite the world’s angst.  At the same time, I do not believe that God expects me to play dead when the world calls me out.

Don’t believe me?  We will get into that in coming blogs.  In the meantime, take the time to read Matthew FIVE through SEVEN, the Sermon on the Mount.  You will be surprised what you actually read.

Entry filed under: 9/11, alienology, Atheism and religion, Demonic, dispensationalism, Eastern Mysticism, emergent church, Islam, israel, Judaism, Life in America, new age movement, Posttribulational Rapture, Pretribulational Rapture, Religious - Christian - End Times, Religious - Christian - Prophecy, Religious - Christian - Theology, salvation, Satanism, Sharia Law, temple mount, ufology. Tags: , , , , , .

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