13 November 2006

Scandalous! Outrageous!

Believe it or not, only now have the media and the good part of society discovered that, yes, there are minors watching (and participating) in erotic shows. First it was in Neuquén, and now in Rosario. The horror!

Come on! Erotic shows including softcore pseudo-lesbianism and partial stripping (the latter featuring both men and women) have been en vogue for years, and many perfectly respectable adult citizens have witnessed and enjoyed them, with very well-disguised guilt or embarrassment or without anything of the sort, in discos and resto-bars. And I don't mean only friendly gangs of horny 20-somethings, but also perfectly plain girls and middle-aged couples as well. Did they think the children would miss them? Did they think regulations would stop entertainment establishments from staging some light porn?

Is it a good idea? Probably not. Is it degrading? Being a feminist myself, I'd say yes, but it's not my call anyway. Is it harmful to the sexual development of minors to watch this overtly fake eroticism? Maybe. Is it ridiculous to make a big fuss out of this while ignoring the fact that these minors were also killing their own brain cells with alcohol, and their own lungs with tobacco smoke (first- or second-hand) in the very same establishment, where it is illegal but widely tolerated? Definitely.

In 1961, science-fiction author Theodore Sturgeon wrote a short story called If All Men Were Brothers, Would You Let One Marry Your Sister?. It was about an isolated planetary human culture which allowed consensual incest between adults. The story appeared in a collection called Dangerous Visions, compiled by Harlan Ellison, and Sturgeon added an afterword where he marvelled at the human capacity for closed-mindedness, saying most people simply consider that certain stuff is bad, and once established that as if it were fact, further avenues of thought and inquiry are shut off. He gave porn as an example, noting that very few people go past the criticism of porn as smut/garbage. These few might admit they don't like porn out in the open because kids can eventually "get their hands on it". Of these, only a few, if pressured, might admit that that is in turn bad because it gets the kids horny. Only but a handful will admit that they don't like the idea of kids being sexually aroused, and basically none will stand being pressured to come up with a reason why sexual arousal is bad for the kids (where it comes from is another matter). These attitudes have changed a bit since 1961, but the holier-than-thou attitude mostly persists.

Yes, fake eroticism fed to an alcohol-stupefied young mind is probably not a good idea. But let's cut the moral outrage.

1 comment:

  1. I really enjoyed this one. My husband once suggested the fastest way to eliminate porn given we are all sexual beings from birth anyway - is to have kids grow up in a demystified environment. Once shame and curiousity surrounding nakedness of human bodies is elminated for the kids as early as they could be aware of such things (from birth? At most 2-3) they would probably spend their money elsewhere - maybe on more booze but maybe not. But then, we don't want to kill business opportunities for the show operators now,do we?


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