a ten year old kid can go into Barnes & Nobles and buy any non-pornographic book/magazine they want. There is a discrepancy there.
This is where I run into trouble with something like this bill... essentially, I agree that some of these products should be restricted to verified "adults", but I think there are huge gaps in our classification of what's appropriate or not..
For example, your ten year old kid could go to the B&N to pick up a copy of American Psycho
.. or Tropic of Cancer
, or something 'cheerful' by Anne Marie MacDonald, etc. While the clerk might go so far as to raise an eyebrow (if they were even familiar with the works -- most of the time, they're barely out of childhood themselves), as long as the right amount of money makes an appearance, they'll dutifully pack up the books and send the kid on their way..
Now.... .... in many ways, I think that's a good thing.
I was lucky enough to have grown up in the kind of house where if I had brought those books home to read, my father would have sat me down and read them to me. Then there would have been DAYS of discussion about the content, and you bet your ass I would have BEEN TAUGHT about that content and why the author might have felt compelled to produce it.
I'm not just making this up either, at ~12, I pulled a copy of some short fiction by Anais Nin off my parent's bookshelf and began to flip through it.. "'the fullness of her honey pot?' hmmm.. what have we here?" Along comes Dad, plucks it out of my hands, and says "Oh! This is some very
fine erotica! .. Know what that is?" I nod my head, thinking "maybe he won't read it to me if he thinks I know already.." "Really? Hmmm... well there's a lot more to it than just sex, you know. Here sit down, let's have a look."
So yeah, I would never have been 'punished' for bringing home a Hustler or something.. I just would have had to read it with the old man! Don't ever make the mistake of having your father read erotica to you, kids. EVER. You will only come to understand it's deeper meaning, and WTF is the point in that
But, yeah.. ultimately I consider myself lucky to have grown up in that kind of environment. Even though it was sometimes embarrassing, the only real taboo in my household was not taking the time to understand or contextualize the 'art' you're exposing yourself to.. Children are EVENTUALLY going to learn about sex and violence, so rather than leave the responsibility of contextualizing those things to strangers, my parents felt quite strongly that it was absolutely their responsibility to teach me about that stuff.. It's really not rocket science; I can't imagine anything more organic..
Sadly, I am aware of how truly rare it is that parents take that point of view. Far too many kids grow up glued to the TV because it keeps 'em quiet and stationary, while their parents vegetate on the sofa right behind them not talking to one another..
No legislation will change that. It's a factor of our no-thought-required, first-world, 21st century life, unfortunately.. if you can't legislate that parents get better at parenting, then you better make it harder for the kids to get their hands on things that require
that parental attention.
This bill is still better than no bill; It is by far an imperfect solution, but life is full of those..
There is active parenting and there is passive parenting, and ultimately, it's the passive ones we need to concern ourselves with.. they populate the world with their sociological experiments. There's no telling what kind of moral compass will be guiding their progeny..
GW: Tashen Boke [R/Me]; Rosti The Ninja [Mo/R]; Gort Grimley [W/Ne]This comment was edited on Oct 8, 14:59.
I'm not even angry. I'm being so sincere right now, even though you broke my heart and killed me.