copyright 1996 by D. Glenn Arthur Jr.
[What's new at this site] Last updated 2001-11-07 (layout only).

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Civil Disobedience

What's my point in including this link here? Well, I oppose the Communications Decency Act (signed into law in the U.S. by President Clinton as part of a Telecommunications Reform bill then overturned on constitutional grounds in the courts). It should never have been passed, and it should never have been signed. Since grandstanding politicians in the US or elsewhere might try something similar again, I think it makes sense to leave this little explanation here.

The CDA would have infringed First Ammendment protection of free speech. It criminalizes "indecent" speech on the Internet.

The CDA purports to protect children. I do not think that my story, "The Chastity Belt", is appropriate for children, and I don't particularly want minors to read it. But I do not approve of the way the CDA attempts to "protect" children. That's the job of parents. And if parents want to make use of "local censor" tools which restrict which sites/files their own computers can access, as one part of doing their job as parents, that's fine. That's appropriate. Just as I have the right to speak freely, others have the right to not listen. There are companies offering such tools. (I am in the process of rating my pages for use with Safe Surf, one such tool. After I've rated all my pages and the Safe Surf folks have reviewed my ratings, my educational pages will be visible to children using Safe Surf compatible browsers. My more "adult" pages will be subject to the configuration options parents select on the software their children use.)) A parent using one of those tools can prevent his or her children from accessing sexually explicit (or otherwise inappropriate) sites without having any impact on what other people can see.

The CDA restricts what adults may read, view, or discuss on the net. It limits us to only that which is appropriate for children.

I am not a child.

So as part of my protest against the CDA, I'm including a link to a sexually explicit story. (Is it "indecent" and therefore now criminal? I don't know. "Indecent" is inadequately defined. But probably.) But since I don't think it's appropriate to every reader, I've included a warning.

I don't think those two actions are inconsistent. My explicit story is marked as such with a warning, so that it can't "surprise" anyone, but I make a point of making it _available_ to other adults who wish to read it.

(As an aside, the story has long been accessible on other folks' web pages. I guess folks liked it.)

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