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MP Seeking To Outlaw Written Accounts of Child Abuse

samzenpus posted about 2 years ago | from the watch-what-you-write dept.

Censorship 454

First time accepted submitter Anduril1986 writes "A UK Conservative MP is seeking to expand censorship in another 'think of the children' debate. The plan this time is to make it illegal to possess written accounts of child abuse. According to Sir Paul Beresford, the MP for Mole Valley such writing 'fuels the fantasies' of offenders and could lead to the physical abuse of children."

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Happy Thursday from the Golden Girls! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41320309)

Thank you for being a friend
Traveled down the road and back again
Your heart is true, you're a pal and a cosmonaut.

And if you threw a party
Invited everyone you knew
You would see the biggest gift would be from me
And the card attached would say, thank you for being a friend.

Fool of an MP (5, Informative)

J'raxis (248192) | about 2 years ago | (#41320319)

Something this fool of a politician should read: Three reasons possession of child porn must be re-legalized in the coming decade [falkvinge.net] by Rickard Falkvinge.

Abstract: This article argues that our current laws on the topic are counterproductive, because they protect child molesters instead of bringing them to justice, they criminalize a generation of normally-behaving teenagers which diverts valuable police resources from the criminals we should be going after, and they lead to censorship and electronic book burning as well as unacceptable collateral damage to innocent families. Child abuse as such is not condoned by anybody, and this article argues that current laws are counterproductive in preventing and prosecuting it.

Re:Fool of an MP (5, Insightful)

wvmarle (1070040) | about 2 years ago | (#41320409)

Actually the porn/arousal part was the last on my mind when I read the headline.

The first thing I thought is, how are we going to record any actual child abuse? How about social workers detailing such events, are they falling foul of the law with their reports?

Probably there will be some exception there.

For the rest, from the face of it, this suggestion sounds a bit like "let's bury it, then it doesn't exist any more". Like how the Party tried to introduce Newspeak, key of which was not so much a "simplification" of the language but the absence of certain words (like "democracy") so people would have no way to think about or discuss those concepts.

Re:Fool of an MP (3, Informative)

mark-t (151149) | about 2 years ago | (#41320499)

The notion that people have no way to think about or discuss concepts that they have no words for is flawed, since, to use your own example, the concept of democracy clearly came about well before anybody had an actual word for it.

Re:Fool of an MP (4, Insightful)

Pieroxy (222434) | about 2 years ago | (#41320583)

We should forbid birth and thus make reproduction illegal. It is proven that birth leads in 100% of cases to death, hence, we will defeat death itself by this move.

Don't ever let the fundies know about it !! (0, Troll)

Taco Cowboy (5327) | about 2 years ago | (#41320663)

It is proven that birth leads in 100% of cases to death, hence, we will defeat death itself by this move.

Please do not let the religious fundamentalists know about it.

No matter which religion they are from - Christians or Islam - because for them, their respective true prophet never die.

You see, defeating death is no longer news to them any more - Their respective prophets had already achieved that unimaginable feat a long, long time ago.

Re:Don't ever let the fundies know about it !! (-1, Troll)

BlueStrat (756137) | about 2 years ago | (#41320897)

It is proven that birth leads in 100% of cases to death, hence, we will defeat death itself by this move.

Please do not let the religious fundamentalists know about it.

Sounds more like something from the moonbat PC Progressive-Left than religious-fundy stuff to be perfectly honest, given their love for all things eugenics/abortion-related and their collective-good-over-individual-good views on how healthcare and other resources and services should be allocated.

Strat

Re:Fool of an MP (5, Insightful)

freman (843586) | about 2 years ago | (#41320685)

We need to outlaw children - that way paedophiles can't see them anywhere, can't hear of them, can't imagine them and in a generation it'll be pointless.

Re:Fool of an MP (1)

metacell (523607) | about 2 years ago | (#41320707)

The notion that people have no way to think about or discuss concepts that they have no words for is flawed, since, to use your own example, the concept of democracy clearly came about well before anybody had an actual word for it.

But without proper words to describe it, the problem is contained to the precious few people who have the capability for independent thought.

Re:Fool of an MP (1)

wvmarle (1070040) | about 2 years ago | (#41320847)

Did you ever read 1984?

With simple mind ... (1)

Taco Cowboy (5327) | about 2 years ago | (#41320507)

... comes very simplistic ideas

You see, the idea proposed by that MP is so simplistic

It supposed to go this way --- See no evil, hear no evil, read no evil, think no evil, and you suppose to do no evil

Will it work?

For simple minded folks, perhaps it would

But ... and this is important, the world we live in is filled with people with all kinds of not-that-simple minds

Even without reading, hearing, seeing any of the "evil" we still can think not-so-nice thoughts

Almost most of us stop at the thinking stage, but some don't seem to be able to control, and commit the crime.

Or, put it in another way, simple ideas do work, but only limited to those with simple minds.

The slope (2)

AliasMarlowe (1042386) | about 2 years ago | (#41320873)

The slope is long and slippery, and leads down a long way. We'd never agree to a great leap downwards, but every incremental movement downwards is easier than a nudge in the opposite direction.
In other words, this MP is severely 'tarded. Alas, so are many regular folks.

Re:Fool of an MP (4, Funny)

metacell (523607) | about 2 years ago | (#41320699)

Like how the Party tried to introduce Newspeak, key of which was not so much a "simplification" of the language but the absence of certain words (like "democracy") so people would have no way to think about or discuss those concepts.

What do you mean? Newspeak has always existed.

It sounds like you're overdue for another re-education.

Re:Fool of an MP (1)

wvmarle (1070040) | about 2 years ago | (#41320825)

I am still learning the intricacies of Newspeak. But never mind I just hear the chocolate ratios have been increased again so I'll just go watching the news about our latest victory in the war against Oceania. Or was it Eurasia? My memory fails me.

Re:Fool of an MP (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41320751)

"Let's bury it, then it doesn't exist anymore"

That's already how society deals with actual child abuse (aside from the occasional meaningless symbolic outrage), so why not do the same with evidence of child abuse?

Re:Fool of an MP (3, Insightful)

KingAlanI (1270538) | about 2 years ago | (#41320645)

I agree that the absolutism of the laws can ensnare non-perverts. The specific point about ubiquity of Google Glasses and accidentally becoming a witness seems too far fetched for now. Punishing consensual acts of the barely underaged is definitely a problem, and kiddie porn law isn't the only example. Using this as a pretext for other bullshit is also definitely a problem.

http://falkvinge.net/2012/09/11/child-porn-laws-arent-as-bad-as-you-think-theyre-much-much-worse/ [falkvinge.net]
The biggest point added in his followup is about how ridiculous it is to criminalize fictional and/or nonsexual work.

Re:Fool of an MP (3, Insightful)

shentino (1139071) | about 2 years ago | (#41320893)

Not to mention how easy it is to use kiddie porn hacks to sabotage someone else's reputation.

Does this surprise anyone? (5, Insightful)

JoshuaZ (1134087) | about 2 years ago | (#41320329)

This is the logical culmination. We've already had decisions that making a sexual cartoon involving Bart Simpson is child porn http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/7770781.stm [bbc.co.uk] . This isn't much farther than that.

Re:Does this surprise anyone? (3, Interesting)

jamstar7 (694492) | about 2 years ago | (#41320649)

Yeah, it's like outlawing science fiction to keep people from going to the Moon.

Wow (2)

fredgiblet (1063752) | about 2 years ago | (#41320331)

What a bastion of freedom.

Re:Wow (1)

fredgiblet (1063752) | about 2 years ago | (#41320345)

And rationality too.

It will only bury the problem (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41320333)

How can something be fought if it is illegal to describe it? How do you get people onside, if you can't describe what they are supposed to be opposing. Saying "Trust me" doesn't really cut it.

It's about time (5, Insightful)

hawguy (1600213) | about 2 years ago | (#41320341)

It's about time someone is passing a law against any written words about any illegal or illicit activity. Let's burn all the crime mysteries since they just foster and encourage people to commit crimes and murders. And those thrillers that glorify spies and espionage are a clear threat to governments anywhere. Any book that describes any immoral activity should be immediately banned as well, if no one reads about adultery they'll never commit adultery.

From now on, only stories about unicorns and rainbows should be allowed to be published.

Child abuse is abhorrent and should be severely punished, but is there any evidence that reading any type of extreme (or non-extreme) porn leads one to perform that activity?

Re:It's about time (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41320381)

What is child abuse? I tried to look it up, but my search results were all blank...

(also, child abuse covers more than just sexual abuse)

Re:It's about time (1)

hawguy (1600213) | about 2 years ago | (#41320405)

child abuse covers more than just sexual abuse

Right, that's why I said child abuse is abhorrent, I didn't see any reason to restrict my statement to only "sexual abuse".

Re:It's about time (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41320397)

I think child pornography, depicting actual abuse, is illegal because it was created for the sole purpose of creating the video. If child abuse is was done for the sole purpose of creating written text, would it be any different? What about people committing murders for the sole purpose of posting it on YouTube for people to watch? Should that material be illegal to possess? What about simply speeding down the freeway on a motorcycle because there's a demand for such video? Should prossession of said video be a crime? (In all fairness, I think when a video depicts "non-consentual" sexual abuse and was soley created for the spread of said video, then it should be a crime. Non-consentual would cover any and all children at the least.)

However, after glancing over the article in question, this isn't about the above. I think it's more about creating a thought crime in the name of "making it look like the MP is doing something so he gets re-elected to parliment".

Re:It's about time (2)

MaskedSlacker (911878) | about 2 years ago | (#41320505)

I think child pornography, depicting actual abuse, is illegal because it was created for the sole purpose of creating the video

What? Are you stupid?

Child porn is illegal because its production requires the molestation of a child. It is (essentially) prima facie proof of a severe crime.

Re:It's about time (4, Insightful)

jamstar7 (694492) | about 2 years ago | (#41320673)

Except the cartoon stuff, which is still illegal. Come to think of it, isn't Twilight considered 'kiddie porn' in that a hundred year old vampire seduces a teenager? And if not, why not? And don't hand me that 'she consented to it' cause by definition, a girl below the age of concent can't consent which makes it statutory rape regardless of who initiated the sex.

Re:It's about time (1)

Intrepid imaginaut (1970940) | about 2 years ago | (#41320723)

I have no idea what the story is with Twilight, but in most countries people aged eighteen or nineteen are allowed to have sex legally. The relative age of their partner is immaterial.

Re:It's about time (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41320809)

True. Apparently 'stupid' people can't consent. What I don't understand is... why can most adults legally consent? They have the intelligence of 5 year olds!

Re:It's about time (1)

ThatsMyNick (2004126) | about 2 years ago | (#41320923)

In some states it is not rape, if the parents consent to it. May be the teenager is from one of states, and her parent gave the vampire their consent?

Re:It's about time (4, Insightful)

mrxak (727974) | about 2 years ago | (#41320773)

I'm pretty sure nobody abuses children because they think they can be famous online or they think they'll make a buck (especially the latter... I have never heard of anyone actually getting rich off of child pornographyâ"you'd think they'd make a big deal when they caught the person). They abuse children because they fucking like it. I'm pretty sure, if there was no means in existence to record, in any medium, the abuse of children, they'd still be abusing children. Again, they like doing it, and it provides for them pleasures above and beyond any possible motives for producing or releasing visual, audio, or written accounts of it.

We already have laws against child abuse, in all its many abhorrent forms. We even outlaw consensual acts that don't fit into the moral codes of behavior of those making the laws. Statutory rape is the obvious example, but there are laws against many other things that are less talked about, and even things that are more broadly accepted like anal or oral sex, prostitution, adultery, certain fetishes, and so on. Then there's unwise behaviors but nonetheless entirely consensual ones such as nude self-photography that is illegal if somebody is underage, even if they are legally able to engage in sexual acts with whomever they choose. Now some of these are still on the books from a more conservative time and rather difficult to enforce, but others are newer, or more widely supported to this day, and these crimes are gone after with a lot of zeal.

Okay... point is, we have laws already that cover the acts depicted in child pornography, whether it is pictures, drawings, video, or written accounts. Are those laws not effective? Then make them stronger. But we've pretty much done the opposite. Possession of child pornography, in many cases, carries more severe penalties than actually raping a child! Which do we think causes more actual harm, the assault, or the images or descriptions of the assault the child may not even know are out there?

Then there's the fact that these images or depictions are evidence of a crime. Possession of evidence of a crime shouldn't be criminalized, because it makes convicting the perpetrator harder. As horrifying as child abuse is, let's think this through. Is it easier or harder to convict a child abuser if they record the abuse that they've done? Is it harder or easier to determine a crime has occurred, and find out who did it, if the record is distributed?

I have no interest in watching people get murdered, but if somebody gets murdered, I'd rather there be a record of it. Society apparently agrees, or at least is more tolerant, because I can, if I choose, find all the video, pictures, or written accounts of people being murdered as I like, and it's all legal to possess or view. I have no interest in watching children get abused, but if a child is being abused, I'd much rather it was documented, and distributed widely, so that the person who did it is more easily found and convicted. Society disagrees, which is pretty screwed up. I don't know why this is controversial, but apparently if you say that murder is worse than child abuse, people get upset and say you sympathize with child abusers. I say they're both pretty bad, but I say if the criminal is stupid enough to record him or herself doing a crime, we should absolutely encourage them gathering and distributing evidence against themselves. Since child abuse so often happens behind closed doors in the privacy of people's homes with very little physical evidence after the fact, a lot of crimes that happen we might never know about if such evidence wasn't being self-collected by perpetrators or witnesses.

And, last but not least, I don't buy into the "it encourages criminal acts" argument. Please. I have killed more people in video games, or written about violent acts as a fiction writer, than I'll ever meet in real life, and I've yet to kill a single actual person in all my years. I've read news stories about real violent acts, and I've never even been in a fist fight. I've certainly never abused a child, and the media loves telling those news stories in big headlines. I've watched television shows and movies, and read more than a few accounts as well, of drug abuse and theft, and I've never even smoked pot or shoplifted a candy bar. People are constantly bombarded with violent, sexual, and criminal imagery and stories. Only a tiny subset of the population actually commits those sorts of acts, and I'd challenge anyone to show a definitive link between those acts and records of any sort depicting those acts those people were exposed to prior.

Humans, ultimately, are capable of great evil. All of us are. We are descended from those who survived conducting war or violence to perpetuate their genes, or those who used war or violence to perpetuate their genes. Only the violent among the species have lived long enough to reproduce in this oftentimes harsh and violent world. There's not a person alive who doesn't have more than a few murderers, rapists, and war criminals in their family tree. We have civilized, tamed ourselves, but those impulses, that capability remains in all of us. Having outlets for those impulses, be they highly sexualized horror films, gritty war movies, violent video games, or rape fantasy erotic literature, if anything keeps us from acting on those impulses and capabilities among the general populace. I see no reason why even child abuse depictions cannot act in the same manner for those who have those impulses. Isn't it better people are masturbating to relieve themselves than taking it out on an actual child? Why must one necessarily lead to the other, when it clearly doesn't for a variety of other imagery and violent impulses?

I would warn this MP that if written accounts of child abuse are outlawed, it may be harder to shock the public into supporting greater government overreach into people's private lives through the surveillance state the UK is rapidly turning into. Certainly the fiction writer in me recoils at any censorship in the written word. This is nothing less than thoughtcrime. But perhaps, if he gets his way and the journalists cannot describe any criminal cases before the courts relating to child abuse, the people will stop thinking it's such a big deal. That might lead to a more libertarian world, though certainly one where more children are abused in secret. Perhaps in a few hundred years, when people once again start waking up to the vast amounts of child abuse all around them, they'll choose to approach it more sanely and scientifically. But how many children will be abused in the meantime, with no evidence to make a case against the perpetrator?

Re:It's about time (1)

wvmarle (1070040) | about 2 years ago | (#41320439)

Those thrillers and spy stories are at least sold as fiction. And James Bond's actions and adversaries are often so over-the-top that they can not be considered realistic.

Now how about shows like Future Weapons that glorify actual death and destruction? They like to demonstrate all kinds of modern weaponry showing off how well it destroys objects, and discussing on how efficient it is in killing people.

Re:It's about time (1)

hawguy (1600213) | about 2 years ago | (#41320493)

Those thrillers and spy stories are at least sold as fiction. And James Bond's actions and adversaries are often so over-the-top that they can not be considered realistic.

I'm no connoisseur of written porn (though i do have a healthy (unhealthy?) collection of adult videos), but I assume the porn in question sold as fiction and the subject matter is over-the-top by nearly everyone's standards.

Now how about shows like Future Weapons that glorify actual death and destruction? They like to demonstrate all kinds of modern weaponry showing off how well it destroys objects, and discussing on how efficient it is in killing people.

But since they aren't actually killing people on the show, wouldn't that be more like a porno movie showing people having sex with watermelons but saying that the watermelons were stand-ins for children?

Re:It's about time (1)

Trilkin (2042026) | about 2 years ago | (#41320841)

What do you think this zombie shit is about? It went from 'crazy Haitian shit' to 'horror story' to 'social commentary on the human condition' and now, currently, 'acceptable social replacement for the mental imagery of shooting people you don't like.'

Future Weapons just fuels the fantasies although some of it is actually pretty interesting from a mechanical level. Oftentimes, though, the show felt more like an advertisement vehicle for new shit. Still, Chris Costa was on it and Chris Costa is awesome.

Re:It's about time (1)

wvmarle (1070040) | about 2 years ago | (#41320905)

Future Weapons just fuels the fantasies although some of it is actually pretty interesting from a mechanical level.

True, which is why I watched it. The military is doing a lot of research and development, new materials and technologies, that often trickle down to more wholesome uses.

Oftentimes, though, the show felt more like an advertisement vehicle for new shit.

Which is why I stopped watching it :-)

Re:It's about time (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41320481)

From now on, only stories about unicorns and rainbows should be allowed to be published.

You've either spent way too much time on 4chan, or you haven't spent nearly enough; I'm not quite sure which.

Re:It's about time (5, Insightful)

Dyinobal (1427207) | about 2 years ago | (#41320485)

Stories about unicorns just fuel for beastiality fantasies.

Re:It's about time (1)

Riddler Sensei (979333) | about 2 years ago | (#41320561)

That's some doubleplusgood think.

Re:It's about time (1)

shentino (1139071) | about 2 years ago | (#41320901)

My guess is that they make it illegal in a vain attempt to stunt the market supposedly served by the actual molesters.

Reminds me of prohibition making the mafia rich from bootlegging.

Not to mention that crimes of lust and passion almost never have a profit motive.

Police Reports? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41320349)

So... this would apply to police reports also, right? Or it's only illegal if you're not Law Enforcement?

What about courts, jury's, attorneys? (1)

Joe_Dragon (2206452) | about 2 years ago | (#41320387)

What about courts, jury's, attorneys, ECT?

Re:What about courts, jury's, attorneys? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41320415)

And people who don't know how to use apostrophes?

Re:What about courts, jury's, attorneys? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41320629)

I'm surprised you stopped there. He managed to cram at least five errors into a six word sentence. That has to be some sort of record.

Re:What about courts, jury's, attorneys? (1)

Anne Thwacks (531696) | about 2 years ago | (#41320919)

Its a new porn genre - grammar molesting. Quick - enjoy it before its banned!

Re:What about courts, jury's, attorneys? (1)

AHuxley (892839) | about 2 years ago | (#41320665)

I think the idea is that courts, jury's, attorneys will be able to read the reports, but under much more strict guidelines.
Spy trials and supergrass (high-profile mass trials based on informers) can be sealed in interesting legal ways.
ie the material presented does not end up in the legal library.
From a legal library it can be requested from within the prison system. People doing life can read each others cases....

Thought police (3, Insightful)

ktappe (747125) | about 2 years ago | (#41320355)

I notice he has made exceptions for existing works such as "Lolita" ... of course because to ban that he would be castigated. But he doesn't seem to have an exception for the psychiatrists who possess such descriptions as they are attempting to treat patients.Or researchers who possess such descriptions as they are attempting to write papers about human sexual behavior. Nope; those are all arrest-worthy to this person.....who is likely having such thoughts himself, just as gay bashers are more likely than not to be gay themselves.

But overall this is nothing more than the thought police coming around again. "Now that we control the pictures, we must control the words!"

Re:Thought police (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41320447)

Maybe he saw some ASCII art and wasn't sure what to do?

Or for victims of child abuse (3, Interesting)

Sycraft-fu (314770) | about 2 years ago | (#41320459)

You find that there are books of child abuse stories. These are not out there for pervy fantasies, they are out there to help other victims. They can read the accounts, understand they are not alone in what happened to them. Likewise writing about it can help people come to terms with it, to remember and cope with the past.

Are there pervs who get their kicks on it? Probably. But hey, people seem to get their kicks on all kinds of things. I've never got foot fetishists myself but there you go. However it is far more valuable for victims as a means for dealing with and understanding what happened to them. Victims of child abuse can feel like they alone in the world experienced this. Stories of other survivors can help them see that they are not alone.

Re:Or for victims of child abuse (1)

mrxak (727974) | about 2 years ago | (#41320831)

That's absolutely right. More than a few survivors of child abuse (of all sorts) find some peace in describing what happened to them through stories, poetry, paintings, you name it. Are they to be made criminals?

Re:Thought police (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41320563)

he doesn't seem to have an exception for the psychiatrists who possess such descriptions as they are attempting to treat patients.Or researchers who possess such descriptions as they are attempting to write papers about human sexual behavior.

That's not a problem. There is a general principle in the law of Commonwealth countries that someone cannot be prosecuted when an otherwise-illegal activity is performed as a necessary part of providing an accepted professional practice (or words to that effect). Hence, a doctor can examine your genitals and it's not sexual assault.

Re:Thought police (1)

freman (843586) | about 2 years ago | (#41320715)

This is the thing, I'm suspicious of politicians creating laws like this.

Are they creating the laws because reading of child abuse turns them on?
If so, do they assume because it turns them on that it turns on a vast population?

Re:Thought police (1)

mpe (36238) | about 2 years ago | (#41320783)

I notice he has made exceptions for existing works such as "Lolita" ... of course because to ban that he would be castigated.

If applied to existing works this would also include the likes of "The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo" and the Harry Potter series. Along with The Bible (most notably in The Torah), probably The Koran and Hansard too.

Re:Thought police (2)

stephanruby (542433) | about 2 years ago | (#41320921)

I notice he has made exceptions for existing works such as "Lolita"...

So I assume Maya Angelou's previous written account of how her uncle molested her would be ok in that case, it's just any new material she writes about that trauma that would get her books burned and her readers prosecuted??

it all depends on how you look at it (4, Funny)

Crypto Gnome (651401) | about 2 years ago | (#41320361)

Pretty soon it will be illegal to "think of the children".

The year is 1984, and thoughtcrime is death.

Re:it all depends on how you look at it (3, Funny)

freman (843586) | about 2 years ago | (#41320729)

Every time I hear someone say "Think of the children" I bite my tongue to prevent myself from saying "like paedophiles do"

Why child porn possession laws are bad (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41320363)

Read the links before you mod the post. The toxicity that exists around the subject impairs most people from having a serious discussion about the subject, and instead rely on the reaction they've been trained to have. Try to resist this reaction as you read the following two well-written articles:

http://falkvinge.net/2012/09/07/three-reasons-child-porn-must-be-re-legalized-in-the-coming-decade/ [falkvinge.net]

http://falkvinge.net/2012/09/11/child-porn-laws-arent-as-bad-as-you-think-theyre-much-much-worse/ [falkvinge.net]

"could"? (4, Insightful)

cheekyjohnson (1873388) | about 2 years ago | (#41320367)

"could lead to the physical abuse of children."

So not only does it want to ban the material entirely because of a few 'bad guys', he also doesn't even know if what he's saying is actually true. Can we ban all books and other media depicting any violence or sexual content whatsoever because they could (but likely wouldn't actually be the cause of it) lead a minuscule portion of the population to commit crimes, too? Actually, can we just ban moronic politicians? They are, without a doubt, ruining just about everything, for everyone.

Re:"could"? (0)

cheater512 (783349) | about 2 years ago | (#41320495)

This MP's thinking is spot on but it doesn't go far enough! Look at the Batman movies - directly responsible for the recent cinema shooting.

Re:"could"? (1)

Anne Thwacks (531696) | about 2 years ago | (#41320933)

I think we should ban word processors - they might lead to new concepts of perversion never known before - at least by me and conservative MPs.

No, wait...

Conservative MPs have a long record of perverted activities! - Perhaps we need to ban conservative MPs!

Goodby Lolita (2, Insightful)

Required Snark (1702878) | about 2 years ago | (#41320379)

Goodby Lolita http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lolita [wikipedia.org]

Goodby Lord of the Flies http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lord_of_the_Flies [wikipedia.org]

Feel free to say goodby to other great books. Add them to the list.

It's OK, it for the good of the children...

Re:Goodby Lolita (4, Informative)

hawguy (1600213) | about 2 years ago | (#41320441)

Goodby Lolita http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lolita [wikipedia.org]

Goodby Lord of the Flies http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lord_of_the_Flies [wikipedia.org]

Feel free to say goodby to other great books. Add them to the list.

It's OK, it for the good of the children...

He specifically excluded some existing literature:

Only "absolutely vile" material would be targeted, he said, adding by way of example that well-known novels such as Vladimir Nabokov's Lolita - which explores a middle-aged man's obsession and sexual involvement with a 12-year old girl - would not be covered.

Though it's not clear how that law would decide what is "absolutely vile" and what's not, as I'm sure there are some people that think Lolita is absolutely vile, and others that would not find any porn to be vile.

Re:Goodby Lolita (1)

AK Marc (707885) | about 2 years ago | (#41320521)

Right, so book burning is fine, so long as the book was written after this law passes?

Re:Goodby Lolita (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41320557)

Shakespear - Romeo & Juliette
Game of Thrones

Re:Goodby Lolita (2)

jxander (2605655) | about 2 years ago | (#41320691)

Romeo and Juliette was a 3-day fling between a 17* year old boy and a 13 year old girl, that caused the deaths of 6 people.

It would most certainly make the MPs cut for "absolutely vile"

*Romeo's age is never explicitly stated, but contextual clues put him in his late teens, possibly even early 20s.

exemption (1)

KingAlanI (1270538) | about 2 years ago | (#41320587)

http://yro.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3113343&cid=41320355 [slashdot.org] mentions exemptions for things like Lolita.
There is a difference between actual art and titillating trash, but sometimes it's not obvious where to draw the line

Re:exemption (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41320621)

There is a difference between actual art and titillating trash

The difference is whatever an individual makes of it. As far as I know, we have no objective way of drawing the line because it's entirely subjective.

Re:exemption (1)

KingAlanI (1270538) | about 2 years ago | (#41320733)

Even with obvious cases like Lolita, there's too much in the middle of the continuum.

The difference is whatever an individual makes of it. As far as I know, we have no objective way of drawing the line because it's entirely subjective.

didn't think of it that way, just thought it was hard to define.
and some stuff can be artistic and titillating. (By the way, I feel written material is often better at that than video material)

Re:exemption (2)

Required Snark (1702878) | about 2 years ago | (#41320777)

Those with an axe to grind will always find an excuse to ban books to promote their cause. Pretending that some things are excluded because they are "literature" is no barrier.

Banning Adventures of Huckleberry Finn http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Huckelberry_finn#Controversy [wikipedia.org]

Banning The Diary of Anne Frank http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Diary_of_Anne_Frank#Banning [wikipedia.org]

As for the difference between literature and pornography, look no further then Naked Lunch by W. S. Burroughs. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Naked_Lunch#Literary_significance_and_reception [wikipedia.org]

Naked Lunch is considered Burroughs' seminal work, and one of the landmark publications in the history of American literature. Extremely controversial in both its subject matter and its use of obscene language (something Burroughs recognized and intended), the book was banned in Boston and Los Angeles in the United States, and several European publishers were harassed. It was one of the most recent American books over which an obscenity trial was held. The book was banned in Boston in 1962 due to obscenity (notably child murder and acts of pedophilia), but that decision was reversed in 1966 by the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court. The Appeals Court found the book did not violate obscenity statutes, as it was found to have some social value. The hearing included testimony in support of the work by Allen Ginsberg and Norman Mailer.

I read all of these books by the time I finished high school with no apparent harm. I don't expect Naked Lunch to be on any high school reading list, but is a prime target for censorship because it is obscene. It is also great literature.

Re:exemption (1)

KingAlanI (1270538) | about 2 years ago | (#41320925)

I haven't read Huck Finn, at least not in a while, but I am aware that the controversy is about how Twain handles racial issues, not something sexual.

I did read Anne Frank, and I do remember a bit on lesbian sexual thoughts amidst the hiding from Nazis stuff. A classic example of why girls keep their diaries secret.

I definitely haven't read Naked Lunch

Not sure if it's about people being oversensitive, or using 'obscenity' as a pretext for something else - either way, the banning isn't helping.

Re:Goodby Lolita (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41320639)

Goodby Lolita http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lolita [wikipedia.org]

Goodby Lord of the Flies http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lord_of_the_Flies [wikipedia.org]

Feel free to say goodby to other great books. Add them to the list.

It's OK, it for the good of the children...

Lolita is one of the great bitter-sweet novels in the English language. It's much more about 1950s America and its culture as compared with Old Europe than it is about morality - the "academic" preface is phony and heavily ironic - yet, despite this, it is profoundly tragic and we feel great sympathy for just about everybody in the book, even for Humbert the pedophile. There is a brilliantly-written frottage episode but I recall no truly graphic descriptions of penetration anywhere, just references to the fact that stuff occurred and some quite beautiful similes.

I always thought, even as a boy, that Lord of the Flies had strong homoerotic undertones, but I don't remember any graphic descriptions of sexual activity.

My first hand experience (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41320407)

I was molested as a child (by a relative, but not my parents), and it seriously messed me up. When I was a teen, I sought help though online support groups, and really healed a lot though talking about it. I'm still not really normal, but it could have been a lot worse. Should I be prosecuted for posting my story (including some details) online in the forum where I received so much help?
This is utterly absurd.

Re:My first hand experience (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41320471)

I sympathise with your ordeal. Have you killed the molester yet?

Cleveland Child abuse scandal (4, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41320435)

UK already has secret witnesses, that can give testimony/lies unchallenged to the court without the defendant being able to hear or challenge them. If this gets its way another part of the prosecution of people will be kept secret and we won't be able to check on how the courts are performing. If people can't see the inner workings of the courts then how can they check the court is working???

So in court lies will be spouted about what happened, and they can do it knowing that people who know the truth that would reveal the perjury will never be able to see the account, and thus the perjury will go unpunished.

It will expose everyone to a bogus child abuse claim.

Look at the Cleveland Child abuse scandal, where some nutter from social services started doing anal dilatation tests on kids and got it into her head all these kids were being abused up the bum, because she'd just been on a course and pumped full of BS.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cleveland_child_abuse_scandal

They (Dr Marietta Higgs and Dr Geoffrey Wyatt) destroyed many families, and ruined the lives of many children, and yet if the evidence was secret, she would never have been revealed as a quack.

They got convictions against many parents (most subsequently overturned), foster parents the children were sent to were prosecuted, neighbours, you name it, they brought a child abuse case them.

Re:Cleveland Child abuse scandal (1)

hawguy (1600213) | about 2 years ago | (#41320577)

Look at the Cleveland Child abuse scandal, where some nutter from social services started doing anal dilatation tests on kids and got it into her head all these kids were being abused up the bum, because she'd just been on a course and pumped full of BS.

Wow. I'd never heard of that before.

How could a medical doctor seriously think that sexual abuse is the primary cause of anal dilation? There's another much more obvious and likely cause, and children are not immune to constipation. How many cases of children who really *were* victims of sexual abuse were not investigated because they didn't fail the anal dilation test? The test itself sounds traumatic to a child, and if it was done unnecessarily it probably counts as sexual abuse itself.

The step to other 'bad' texts is not far (2)

G3ckoG33k (647276) | about 2 years ago | (#41320443)

The step to other 'bad' texts is not far. Soon you can't say that Christians are really, really nice folks whereas the Jews and the Moslems are bad people and destroy the will Earth. Soon yoy can't say that atheists are the only well founded cynics. Soon you can't look for similarities between Adolf Hitler, Idi Amin, Dolly Parton, Patrick Dempsey, George W Bush, Pol Pot, Benjamin Netanyahu, and Johnny Weissmüller. Soon you can't find uncensored books. The step to other 'bad' texts is not far, so stop this reasoning about making it illegal to possess written accounts of child abuse. The small steps are more treacherous than you may think now.

Just to prove how correct he is... (1)

AlienIntelligence (1184493) | about 2 years ago | (#41320455)

Look at all the people copying other types of accounts of wars and slavery and homicidal killing sprees...
oh wait they aren't...

I'm not voting FOR the ability to do it... I'm just saying... reducing our rights further, blah, blah, it's not
even in the US, so yay for fascism. George Orwell.

-AI

This lead me to a really excellent idea: (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41320475)

Politicians should not be able to vote on any legal issues of which they have not actually been a victim.

All of this think of the children BS could go straight out the door except for issues raised and voted on by the sexually abused population.

Although I suppose that would give politicians the go-ahead to vote on 'Drug War' laws here in the US, based on how many DC politician reps snort blow.

doubleplus crimethink must not be thought (0)

Eggplant62 (120514) | about 2 years ago | (#41320489)

Big Brother is good. That is all.

Planning on banning the bible too? (3, Insightful)

mark-t (151149) | about 2 years ago | (#41320511)

Because there's plenty of horrendous accounts in that text.

Re:Planning on banning the bible too? (4, Insightful)

Sasayaki (1096761) | about 2 years ago | (#41320637)

I wouldn't be worried about the outrage of Christians from the Bible getting caught up in this law (it's certainly possible though). They'll mostly just be angry and not comply with the law (not that anyone would really).

I'd be more worried about them banning the Koran.

After all, Mohammad the Prophet had a wife named Aisha (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aisha) who was betrothed to him at 6 or 7 and the union was consummated at age 9. The text even explicitly says that she was still playing with her toys when all this was going on.

Now, such marriages were not seen as improper in a historical context, but hey. This law is specifically about removing all text, irrespective of context, since it might "give people ideas". Never mind that books like The Lonely Bones don't glorify child rape at all (the movie was much, much more sanitized than the book). It could give people ideas!

So sure. Go ahead and tell people you're banning the Koran because it encourages paedophiles. That seems like a safe thing to do.

Re:Planning on banning the bible too? (1)

lightknight (213164) | about 2 years ago | (#41320857)

More along the lines that it's a calculated maneuver to pre-emptively eliminate the testimony of various people who were negatively affected by the 'disciplinarian' lifestyles of their caregivers, many of whom rely on various religious texts for the justification of their actions.

Somewhere in the confusion of writing diary or journal entries, typically as per a counselor or psychologist's advice, describing their horrible mistreatments, someone will be arrested and successfully prosecuted for their own attempts to put their life back together, further compounding the harm down to them. You watch and wait, it will happen; and may their blood be upon these politicians.

"Illegal" article on gawker (4, Interesting)

CODiNE (27417) | about 2 years ago | (#41320513)

This article [gawker.com] was up the other day, it has a shocking description of how abuse happens and the thought process of the abuser. Was that necessary to the overall article? It certainly caused a bit of controversy. Overall however the article presents pedophiles not as a pure embodiment of evil but as sick people who need help and counseling. That is, distinguishing pedophiles from child molesters who have acted on that impulse. It seems that allowing people who have such a bent to get help and counseling without completely destroying their lives would be better to society overall than being out for their blood or driving them to suicide from despair. Strangely the description in the article while sickening did add a human angle to the problem and helped me personally to not jump to condemn someone who might be sexually stuck as a 12 year old in an adult's body. Just... get... help.

half right, in my mind (3, Insightful)

circletimessquare (444983) | about 2 years ago | (#41320779)

the way i see pedophilia: it's sort of like being a homosexual, it's an innate biological desire

biologically, if you are born a pedophile, it's like being born with cancer. through no fault of your own, your genetics has created a mind that finds the wrong thing to focus on sexually. it's a biological error. it's "wrong", it's an "error" BIOLOGICALLY, because attraction to the same sex or prepubescent children results in no offspring

however, homosexuality is not MORALLY wrong, because it is between consenting adults. therefore, homosexuality should be 100% legal

meanwhile, pedophilia means you are attracted to someone whereby any actions you take on your attraction results in inevitable psychological harm, because a prepubescent child can never informed consent to sex. and you have permanently warped their self-image, confidence, and how they think about transgressive, inappropriate, unwanted behavior at a very impressionable age. you've done real substantial damage to another human being. simply by acting on your erroneous but innate and irremovable desires as a pedophile

what a horrible hell

the worst part is, if i am correct about pedophilia being like homosexuality, we must admit then that it can never be cured. you can't cure homosexuality (nor should you try)

but then if pedophilia is an innate biological attraction, it means you are dealing with a human being who is doomed. i mean really, really doomed. to a lifetime of suffering. they must continually suppress their natural desires. what does this do to their happiness? or, act on their desires, and be a horrible transgressive criminal. that's their choice

what a horrible curse. cancer sounds better

willpower is not infinite. no matter how moral the person. therefore everyone who is a pedophile is a potential time bomb. you simply cannot trust them on their own in society

perhaps this explains why so many pedophiles are attracted to the priesthood. as a moral person, who is aware they carry around a permanent desire that means they are in constant danger of acting immorally in a moment of weakness, their reaction is to embrace moral fortitude as hard as they can. and yet so many still fall, and still transgress against children, simply because you are dealing with a strong innate desire and the human mind is not a steel cage, we all have moments of weakness

someday, they will be alone with a child, through accident or chance, no matter how hard they try not to be, and if that day overlaps with a moment of weakness, that we all have, then you have doomed an innocent child to suffer a transgression which will screw them up psychologically. imagine carrying around this curse!

we are left with a horrible conclusion: the only way to "treat" pedophiles, in my mind, is permanent banishment from society

it is an awful thought

but i honestly cannot think of a superior arrangement if pedophilia is like homosexuality and is therefore innate. such people, once identified, simply cannot be allowed to roam freely in society where there is also children, because we have as our duty as moral people to understand the danger they present to children, and themselves

permanent banishment. can anyone think of a better way? castration has been shown to not work. but my mind finds it an inescapable conclusion about the nature of the pedophilia, if i understand it correctly

depressing

They need to make themselves illegal (1)

AK Marc (707885) | about 2 years ago | (#41320517)

It should be illegal to think about other people harming children. That way, it would be illegal to pass laws like this. And, from their arguments for such silly laws, if you don't think about it, it doesn't happen.

On the upside... (1)

lcrocker (144720) | about 2 years ago | (#41320529)

Maybe this will make it illegal to read the Koran.

Linda Lovelace did a dog (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41320571)

Remember Linda Lovelace? When Labour introduced the extreme porn bill, that made it a sex crime (something that would put you on a register and bar you for life from many jobs), part of the argument brought was the claim by Linda Lovelace. She claimed that she was always held at gunpoint and when you see her on a video she is being raped.

THIS IS A LIE, it was investigated by the FBI and found to be a lie. She simply regretted her career when she married a religious man.

Yet the evidence of it is largely illegal now to possess. You can't point to her claim and say it was a lie, because you'll be raided by the police and prosecuted for sex crimes. I can describe a video in which she had sex with a dog, and was clearly really enjoying it, but to have that video would land you in jail.

What if I can no longer describe it? What if the mere words discussion something are themselves a crime?

It seems that we've gone down the wrong road, conflating possession of evidence with the act itself, and now he's doing the logical thing of attacking even discussion of it.

Linda Lovelace did a dog, she enjoyed it, I can't point to the evidence, but I can say that people lied about it for their own aims, those lies resulted in a bad law being passed which is being abused by the police. Yet I can't show you the evidence because it is a crime to show the evidence.

Your cunning plan... (1)

Weaselmancer (533834) | about 2 years ago | (#41320575)

I do not think you have thought it all the way through.

When victims of child abuse go to the courts, the stenographer will do...what exactly? Write down everything that is said. Right?

On the plus side the jail is right there. After court is over you can take the stenographer right over to the holding cell.

Genital Mutilation (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41320581)

Meanwhile, physical and sexual abuse of children in the form of male genital mutilation continues to be ignored.

Soon... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41320601)

Soon it'll be illegal for the police to keep records of child abuse on file. So then it no longer exist. And the world is a better place...?

Because (2)

Greyfox (87712) | about 2 years ago | (#41320721)

If you don't hear about it, it must not exist? You may be unwilling to look upon the darkest evil and depravity that our species has to offer, but I assure you that hiding your eyes will not make it go away. Sure, it's an easy solution to make you feel better, but perhaps you should expend a little more mental effort and try to come up with a better solution.

Game of Thrones: gone (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41320759)

Danaerys was 13 (15 on TV) when she got impregnated by Kahl Drogo. That's rape and its description is child pornographie. Even if she consented in the book, it is worse in the TV series. Millions of viewers are criminals now and those who read the books are even worse off.

So how do you get evidence on record in a court ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41320763)

Going to make presenting those sworn statements in court cases problematic.

And handling the records in the govt. child protections orgainizations ....

(Idiot)

Is this guy real? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41320791)

It's 100% clear. He just wants to erase the lists of public figure child molestors. So it works for the pedofiles, not against them. If someone rapes his child and he reports it, the minute he fills in on a piece of paper a complaint, that's a 1 item pedo list so off he goes to jail and the list is destroyed.

I guess his constituents... (2)

dadioflex (854298) | about 2 years ago | (#41320803)

... didn't "Let the Right One In" when they cast their votes. See what I did there?

What? (1)

lightknight (213164) | about 2 years ago | (#41320807)

Great, so actual testimony of child abuse from people who were abused as children will become much more difficult to acquire -> this is what this law will functionally become once implemented. Very nice to bring this up while most of the continent is embroiled in sex scandals involving younger children -> it's a backdoor attempt to outlaw such testimony.

Cue the cendescending Wonka meme (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41320813)

Oh, such writing 'fuels the fantasies' of offenders?

Please do share your expertise on the psychology of child abusers.

Seriously though, can we not support MPs that think they should push for new law based on their own opinion. I'd have no real problem if this law was being proposed following an unbiased and comprehensive study which strongly suggests that the passing of this law will make a significant difference to the frequency and severity of child abuse cases (and I do mean "significant" here as a law banning the possession of any kind of written material is a serious infringement on human rights, one few who have thought carefully about it would support without a very good reason).

What about students? (1)

Nivag064 (904744) | about 2 years ago | (#41320865)

What about students who need to do assignments about child abuse - they would be breaking such a law!

An excellent plan (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41320935)

An excellent plan. It builds on the proven success of banning swear words, thereby stopping perverts from going around having this ... sex stuff.

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