Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Free Speech...But Only For Some

"So I shed no tears for the absence of porn based on underage cartoon characters on the Internet. Nor will I miss feeling like a party to an illegal act every time I do an image search for cartoon and comic book characters.

However, there must be a rather sizable number of people actually visiting these XXX cartoon parody sites -- not just those who get off on such images, but just regular people looking for some gross-out humor. Will the latter category find themselves roped in with these crackdowns, even arrested? Would having an illustration of a "Peanuts Orgy" on your hard drive be enough to convict you as a sex offender?

It would be helpful, I think, for these boundaries and determinations of what is or is not legal to view and download to be clearly delineated and widely broadcast, as to prevent misunderstandings."

This is what I wrote in my first post on the Simpsons child-porn case. Please note the last two paragraphs.

Of course, this post has been misquoted and misrepresented ad nauseum. Why?

I believe it's because within that post I dare to merely suggest that there might limits to moral conduct. That, I think, is the real problem.

In this industry, you are allowed to lie, cheat, commit adultery, have references to sperm-dumpsters and anal rape in comics that are marketed to general audiences. You can have an extended segment in your comic book depicting a teenage girl masturbating. And apparently you can have a hard drive full of illustrated child porn.

But you can't take a moral stand.

An exaggeration? I just took a moral stand against child porn. I was crucified. I had people email me and insinuate that I would be destroyed in this industry unless I backed down and recanted.


This is the free-thinking comic book industry? A place where I have to recant?

No, self-appointed Internet "mouthpieces" of the comic book industry and fandom. I have no respect for you. You have become the same self-righteous dogmatic hardasses you've spent so much time railing against. Congratulations. You have used the same tactics -- misrepresentation, coordinated attack, calls for boycott and firing -- that your "enemies" do. You are official card-carrying assholes.

You wonder why kids don't read comics anymore? Why the readership numbers couldn't be higher in general? Wake up -- a portion of the United States thinks your industry and your fandom aren't fit for children. Or fit for any healthy individual. You think that's all fundamentalist Christians? I run into adults in New York all the time from all walks of life who think that comics are for "weird," "socially backward" people. For people with sexual hangups, who live in basements. They don't want to let their children go to comic shops. And they ask me: what's a "normal" comic that they or their child can read?

The biggest question I received in this debate has NOT been, "do you think people who possess Simpsons child porn should be arrested."

It's been:

"Why do you think illustrated child pornography is harmful when it's just drawings?"

And that's such a naive, blissfully clueless question.

Again: why aren't children reading more comics?

Who is looking out for children in this equation?

Friends of Lulu?

But J. Caleb Mozzocco has already stated that because of my stance against illustrated child porn, I am not fit to be the president of Friends of Lulu.

Or it could be that Mozzocco is a card-carrying dogmatic idiot using the same tactics that I'm sure he'd condemn if they were being used by Karl Rove, Sean Hannity, Rush Limbaugh, etc.

Free speech...but only for some.

Free speech...but only for some.

Free speech...but only for some.

A Danish cartoonist who makes fun of Mohammed is allowed to have free speech -- but the offended Muslim who marches through the streets to protest it is held up as a symbol of a repressive mindset.

I've been seeing offensive and stereotypical portrayals of Christians in comics for at least the past fifteen years straight -- but I see no complaints from the same pundits who decry other stereotypes in comics. Why is that? Why is it ok to use the symbol of the evil preacher over and over and over again, but if that brand of stereotyping was done regarding any other religion it would be thrown off the stands?

Why is the person who possesses illustrated child porn supported and befriended by comics celebrities, fandom, and pundits -- but the same respect for "free speech" is not extended to me? Why?

Tell me why.

It's free speech -- but only for some. Those who do not fit in with the "program" do not get the benefit of free speech or respect. Those people must be thrown out of their jobs, ostracized, and attacked.

Was there a little asterisk at the end of "V for Vendetta" that led to the following caption:

"Of course, if we were talking about a Right Wing viewpoint, it'd be ok to do all this to them."

Because that's where we're headed.

And if I'm a "Conservative," I am the most Liberal of all Conservatives.

What about real Conservatives? Or hardline Christians? Or hardline Muslims? Where does your idealistic belief in "I may not agree with what you have to say, but I will fight for the death for your right to say it" extend to?

Why not at least admit that you DO have biases? That you DO hate certain people? And that if you had your druthers, certain people would not be allowed to voice their points of view? Why pretend that you are something you are not?

Why pretend you are tolerant? Stop the charade, already, and embrace your fascism. J. Caleb Mozzocco, embrace your fascism, embrace your intolerance. Stop pretending you are some beacon for free speech when you are just a Karl Rove hangover and a mediocre blogger to boot.