Is Censorship ever justified? : LUSENET : Novenotes : One Thread

Are there any circumstances that censorship of materials for adults is justified? --Al

-- Al Schroeder (, October 03, 1999


The woman with the chocolate syrup is indeed a real example. Unfortunately. And thanks for the compliments about "making you think"---I thought that a quite effective way to do it. Someone in another forum said that elephant dung probably wouldn't smell, since they were vegetarians. Ummmm. I'm not a farm boy, but I've been on a farm, and cow dung certainly has an---aroma.--Al

-- Al Schroeder (, October 05, 1999.

Whew! That's a toughie. I'm not much impressed by some of this crap (REAL CRAP, now - (is it more 'artistic' because it's ELEPHANT crap)) that gets called art these days. I can't imagine why people are paying high prices for it. But nobody forced them to buy it. They may not have much sense, in my book, but no one should take away their freedom to squander their money.

Censorship is a dangerous thing. It gives too much power to zealots who would take control. Pretty soon, there's no freedom left. So I say we should never be tempted to use it. No matter how bad one thinks the particular mode of expression is.

-- Joan Lansberry (, October 03, 1999.

You know what I like best about Nova Notes? You so often give me a different way of looking and thinking about things - just like you did today. Use the elephant dung! Brilliant!

I don't know the answer to this one either - censorship = bad - but - on the other hand - I wouldn't pay 2 cents for this piece of "art" - and I do question whether tax dollars ought to support such work. I don't have a problem with artists creating whatever they feel compelled to create - just with the funding for it. (Is that story about the woman and the chocolate syrup true? Geez...) I'd like to see more arts funding from private corporations and groups.

-- Sandy (, October 03, 1999.

Firstly, let us agree that there is a difference between censorship and spending other people's money on dubious stuff. That out of the way, yes, censorship is justified if the expressions are of hate or scorn against persons or groups who can not easily defend themselves. Some of the propaganda material of the Nazis was pretty passable art, but the content was another matter altogether. However, these things will as a rule pop up only when the public sentiment is in favor of evil already, so censorship is more likely to come down on the good stuff.

-- Magnus Itland (, October 04, 1999.

one way of considering censorship. . . . if you don't like the material - - - - vote with your feet - - walk away, do not attend, don't look at it. elephant dung wouldn't be there if no one would take the time to view and review it. i guess some pooh bah who decides to use government money to put some monstrosity on display should be discharged for incompitence....... i don't think that is in the realm of censorship. what one does with the mouth or the pen is considerably different than what they do with guns, clubs and swords.

insubordination or direct defiance of the proper authorities (i.e. parents and teachers, etc.) i think should be treated with direct discipline. there are times that what is said is defiance of common sense and disruptive to the process of civilization. this is the knife edge we teeter on. i feel it is my perogative to call a politician a "dumb shit" - - - but not to tell a policeman to, "shove it" when he is trying to control a riotous situation. so what do we do ? try to use forbearance and tolerance - - - - try to avoid becoming inflamed by having a difference of thought or ideology. the ancient instructions to physicians was, "first, do no harm." i think this is a fine precept for us all to apply to all facets of life.

-- ici jongleur (, January 05, 2000.

Well, I don't think cencorship by the government is ever justified, but I think censorship by parents and legal guardians is reasonable. People have the power not to purchase something or to promote an alternative peice of art if something offends them.

-- AJ (, October 03, 2000.

cencorship isnt right if given by ANYONE! take music artists, they have the right to freedom of speech and can write and sing whatever they want and it shouldnt be censored! it takes away their freedom of speech

-- christina marie wilson (, April 24, 2001.

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