Friday, December 03, 2004

“Teh gay”, bad words, Micro$oft, and nice pictures

A photo taken from a model aeroplane

Censorship has always been all the rage: as long as there is a surfeit of liberty — intellectual, sexual, cultural, you name it — there’s always a movement which disagrees and says, firmly and didactically, that it’s BAD. And this week is the week where we all get to look forward to the 2,004th birthday of Jesus and get hot under the collar about intolerance.

(Actually, tolerance isn’t that hot either, but moving on…) Utah. Let us wander thither, and note the quite laughably prudish case of a teenager whose principal told him that to take his boyfriend to the prom, he’d have to get a note from his parents first. Aside from the issue of forcing him to come out to his parents to do so (if he hadn’t already) I think you get the idea of how shitty that was.

Sex education in American schools, with its new emphasis on Federal funding for solely those syllabi which only list the failure rates of contraception, is just as dangerous and twisted. You can’t contract HIV through sweat, or get pregnant from a bit of pussy–rubbing, but this is what these kids are to be taught if the Bush administration gets its way.

Even blogging isn’t safe from the monolithic censor, as Microsoft’s new online blogging software comes with a built–in engine which prevents you from using words like ‘anal’ or ‘Lolita’ — “Lolita is a novel by Vladimir Nabokov” is an unacceptable blog title but “Dick, Balls, Boobies, Goddammit” is. Heh. Stoopid.

Film gets it in the neck (erm…) next, with a film about Kinsey being the next target of America’s religious right. Kinsey liked blowing Americans (’ sexual lids off), you see.

And why all this? Well, according to people who aren’t liberal, being liberal about sex is a very threatening thing because it emphasises us as sexual, and therefore physical, beings — part of a species, not really touched by the divine. Sex is very bad PR for humanity in these people’s eyes. And suicide is very bad PR for the famous MIT and NYU in America. Universities’ corporate arms are scared that parents will sue. So one of them has decided that if you’re feeling suicidal for any reason, you can’t continue to study there. A vicious example of how important money is, to the utter slap–in–the–face exclusion of a rich and rewarding life.

Luckily, there’s plenty of reward on hand — or on plane — if you’re a radio–controlled model aircraft enthusiast and a photographer: you can take really wonderful pictures!

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