Tuesday, 23 July 2013

Won't Somebody Think of the Children?


Determined to make every facet of modern life abysmal and soul-crushing for the British public, Conservative Prime Minister and number one rent-a-twat-in-a-suit, David Cameron, has announced his plans to introduce a universal filter to block porn. Cue mixed reactions from the British public. Personally I find porn to be, quite honestly, rather sad and something that has never particularly interested me: It seems like an unnecessary existential crisis, that'll ultimately lead to one questioning one's purpose. But I accept that a lot of people do, for whatever reason, enjoy it. 

The reason I am writing about something I obviously do not care about, is because I sternly object to the government introducing what is, essentially, a form of censorship. How dare they control what people can do in their own homes (especially when said activity is mostly legal). And how dare they use the innocence of children as an excuse. 

As usual, such news has forced the spineless eejits out of the woodwork to naively spout their ridiculous rhetoric - quell surprise. Here I'll be looking at some of these bullshit claims. 

"Yes mother...Protect our innocence."
  1. Think of the Children.
Yes, let us think of the children. Children who in a different era would have been taken to a brothel by their father to bed their first wench. I'm also sure that no adolescents have ever stayed up until ludicrous o'clock to catch an eighteen rated movie on TV in the vein hope of catching glimpse of a nipple.

These same children whose parents would rather plonk them down in front of Call of Duty than actively parent. Whilst not wishing to imply violent media turns children into killers, why do we have a more relaxed view toward children seeing on-screen beat-downs and decapitations than a little bit of nobbing?

I'm rather tired of being considered implicit in helping to raise other people's children. I have no child myself - nor do I currently desire being a father - so why should my lifestyle have to work in conjunction with those that do? By that I mean according to the (implied) social contract, my responsibility to the children of others is minimal, and spookily similar to Asimov's Law of Robotics: I will not harm them, nor will I deliberately mistreat them. And that's it. If I want to walk down the street wearing a t-shirt displaying the artwork of Cannibal Corpse's Tomb of the Mutilated album, I will. If you - the parent - fear that your child will be disturbed or in anyway corrupted by a t-shirt that very literally depicts canis canem edit (in a most gruesome manner), then it is your job, and your job alone, to provide comfort, reason and context. But it's easier to complain and get the offending article banned.  

Ultimately, if you have the internet then it is up to you to monitor what your children get up to on it, and set the vital precautions in place.

So yes, let us protect our children. Because children were innocent before internet porn corrupted them. Because paedophiles only existed once Google was invented. It's not like most kids aren't capable of stabbing you to death for looking at them anyway.

"I'm not a pervert, I've just burnt away the layers of flesh on my dick through excessive wanking."

       2.  You'll Only Mind if You're a Pervert.

Oh, if I had a penny every time someone pulled this sort of: "If you're X, then you won't Y," argument, I'd have...a modest enough collection to clean out the slot machines in Bridlington. The suggestion here is that if you object to the government filtering porn, then you must be some kind of sexual deviant. I suppose that's a fair assumption: We can infer that King Leonidas must have loved pitfalls enough to have them so gratuitously placed around.

If some kind of bureaucratic organisation did indeed want to erode away our internet freedoms, then porn would be an excellent place to start. Argue, and the proponents of such action will be dismissive of you: Simply stating that you're just angry that they're taking away your porn. But if the government panders to this kind of moral hysteria then where will it all end?If you think about it, to do what Cameron is suggesting would require a sophisticated system to be put in place; the type of filtering system that could equally be used to censor other things (Foreign News, Anti-Government sites, etc.). So, we've got a sophisticated filter and a Prime Minister so willing to bend over to the moral crusaders. What can go wrong there?  Seriously, that's a worse idea than teaming up an Enterprise Red Shirt with Dirty Harry.

People can speak out against unjust matters that do not directly concern them. Just because I don't spend my time on the internet looking up so many tits that I feel like I'm flicking through a Bill Oddie calendar, doesn't mean I can't be concerned by the worrying precedent that such an action sets. Without wishing to invoke Godwin's Law, a certain famous statement by Martin Niemรถller comes to mind.

I wish refusing to accept Cameron's existence was this simple.

         3.  You Can Opt Out.

Of all the bullshit claims this one is the hardest to dispute. How can my fellow bloggers and I decry the level of totalitarian control such a bill would grant, when opting out of it is easier than getting Jezebel's legs open during happy hour? From that perspective, it's less David Cameron taking away the peoples' porn, and more him making it difficult for minors to access - what a benevolent bastard!

However, one thing needs to be considered here: To opt out you will need to specifically ask your Internet Service Provider.  Ignoring the fact that this will probably involve more bureaucratic hoop jumping than an EU run circus; the implication is that the government will have a list of every single person who has asked for access to pornographic content. "Ah," I hear you bemoan, rather know-it-all-ingly, "we're in the age of data mining and privacy invasion. The government already knows what you get up to." This is admittedly true. But whilst it is obvious anything we do online can be viewed, collected and placed into a database, it is hardly likely that the government has extensive files on what every single person has ever done on the internet. Whereas, in this instance, there'll be some government agency out there with a list of everyone in the country who has specifically requested adult content.

What would the government do with such a list? Nothing, probably. But ignoring the rather tawdry vibe of the concept, do you want to end up on a list that states you are using the very things the government is cracking down on? If it was foreign news sites in lieu of porn sites, how comfortable would you feel knowing that the government knew exactly what you were getting up to? And besides, data gets leaked and I imagine a good many people wouldn't like others to know what they get up to in the comfort of their own homes. I, for example, would be highly embarrassed if people knew that I eat like an anime character. Oh.

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