Thursday, March 26, 2009

Comparing "Sexting" to Child Porn is Ludicrous

Check out this latest article about how a budding new moral panic, the teenage cell phone phenomenon of “sexting” is about to turn into the next salvo on free speech and expression in America.

The ACLU, to its credit, is at least taking on this Pennsylvania county’s paranoid and destructive attempt at prosecuting teenage girls who sent provocative pictures of themselves to their boyfriends over the cell phone. And this prosecution is taking place despite the fact that THE TYPES OF PICTURES SENT BY THE GIRLS ARE NOT CLASSIFIED AS ILLEGAL IN PENNSYLVANIA!!!!!!!! So what the &^$%ing %#&* happened to equal protection under the law?

What happened is the latest case in the ages-old social phenomenon of the moral panic. A moral panic usually ensues when some strange and unusual event, some aberant occurrence is suddenly blown out of proportion (most easily by the mass media) and cast as a pernicious crisis threatening all of society. Sexting is just the latest moral panic, right after the scientifically baseless media violence hysteria, the steroid paranoia, the violent video game hysteria, the Satanic heavy metal hysteria, the comic book moral panic of the 1950s, the Red Scare, and all the way back to the colonial witch trials.

Sexting, as so perfectly argued by Fordham Professor Paul Levinson on today’s Culture Wars radio show, is not child pornography. It is not created under the same circumstances and it is in no way an equivalent of child pornography. Child pornography is the victimization of children, the videotaping or photography of children against their will by a pornographer, for distribution and sale. Sexting is teenagers voluntarily taking pictures of themselves and controlling those pictures by distributing them to friends and boyfriends. It is sexual experimentation and rebellion by kids at an age when every generation of teenagers had been rebellious, when they have experimented with sex and sexuality. Comparing sexting to child pornography is ludicrous.

But sexting is also a wonderful boon to various groups of censorious crackpots and control freaks like the Parents Television Council (check out their web page where they bemoan the creeping immoral menace of sexting) and the rest of their meddling ilk who use this as an opportunity to push for more intrusive laws and regulations that control private behavior. And just be sure and take a look at the part of the Pennsylvania sexting article that describes some of the punishment the authorities want meted out to these girls. A forced “re-education” program? RE-EDUCATION?? The Soviet Union used to have re-education programs in the Siberian gulags!!!

So don’t believe for a microsecond that all the moral watchdogs and media crusader groups are as appalled and saddened and outraged by sexting as they claim. These folks are happy as can be every time they imagine another kid “sexting” a picture of herself. The more kids sexting, the better, they must no doubt be gushing in their most private moments. Every such incident is just more ammunition for these parasites to launch their assaults on free expression and civil liberties.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

A Can't Miss Culture Wars Episode

Be sure and tune in to the March 26th episode of WSPC Culture Wars, when we talk to Fordham University Communication Professor and Science Fiction author Paul Levinson. Dr. Levinson, a strong supporter of our show and St. Peter's College, will talk to us about the intrusion of ideology and political dogma into the world of science and research.

Plus, Dr. Levinson has debated PTC head Brent Bozell and challanged him on the fact that his regressive and repressive organization has virtually no scientific basis for their anti-speech agendas. You must check those out on YouTube!

Also, Jennifer B. White, author of The Witch and the Devil's Son, will talk about aspiring authors trying to beat the odds and breaking into the big, bad world of New York commercial publishing. In this economy, the deck might be stacked against writers, but Jennifer, a PR professional, has tips for guerilla marketing tactics and how talented and imaginative first time writers can get their work some attention.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

More Culture Wars podcasts available!

More episodes of the WSPC Culture Wars radio show are available on podcast for downloading right here.

Be sure and check out our most attention grabbing episode yet, our debate with the head of the New Jersey chapter of the Parents Television Council from February 5.

In hindsight, I realize that our discussion with that woman was entirely too long to make the point that her organization has no proof, scientific basis, or even understanding of the issue of negative media effects. If you read her blog entry about our exchange right here, you will realize that she does a much, much better job of trashing the PTC's repuation than I ever could. Just read through her entire blog entry and take a close look at her defense of the nature of the PTC and why my criticisms are unfair. The PTC, she explains, is not a scientific organization and they can not be expected to offer scientific proof to back up their claims about all these horrific, heinous and brutal effects of the media. Need I say any more?? A major PTC figure basically admitting that everything they argue is essentially worthless because they can prove none of their assertions. What a gem!

But make sure and listen to the entire broadcast because everything that she argues - including her endorsement of PTC members threatening a school's donors - are loud and clear and easily understandable...contrary to her blog suggestions that her comments were made intentionally hard to hear.

Then, for a guest arguing the different side of the story, make sure and download our talk with USC sociologist Dr. Karen Sternheimer.

For more of Karen Sternheimer, check back in to the Culture Wars podcasts this week and hear our discussion with her about the modern celebrity culture and the social networking phenomenon. Then read more of Dr. Sternheimer's thoughts about identity and social networking at the Everyday Sociology blog.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

You can not be F*%#ing serious!!

And that was my reaction upon seeing the story about Dora the Explorer's makeover turning up all over news sites. Day after day after day!! Why is this still news? For example, check out the MSN A-list web search page right here.

Like I wrote some weeks before, I wouldn't be too shocked to look at the news one morning and see stories of stonings, the burning of witches, and the red-lettering of adulterers. We're sliding into a culture of ridiculous, puritanical paranoia.

These idiotic claims about a glammed up Dora, or video games and kids, sexy MTV videos, and violent films have turned into the new version of "the Devil made me do it." By claiming that these cartoons and toys and TV shows and movies are in some way harmful to anyone, are we not manufacturing a million excuses every day for people to avoid taking responsibility for their behavior. Just imagine the following:

"You see, ladies and gentlemen of the jury, my client is not really a murdering, thieving scumbag who should be locked away for life, but he's really a victim. He's the victim of video games and MTV. They made him do it. He should be treated and understood and felt sorry for. He's the real victim and he doesn't deserve punishment."

As for Dora being too sexy, I just wonder about where the Baby Boomer generation went so terribly wrong. How did people who brag about smoking dope, dropping acid, and free love raise a generation of paranoid nit-witts who get bent out of shape over an educational cartoon character.

As William Shatner would say, "People, get a life!"

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Stallone is God!

If Hitchcock, Kurosawa, and Ford were to suddenly come back from the dead, I don't think I could be any more psyched than I am about the news that keeps coming in about the developments on Sylvester Stallone's The Expendables!

Check out all the news on the stallonezone web page.

What will, no doubt, be the greatest action film ever made has just added Stone Cold Steve Austin to the cast. This, along with Jason Satham, Jet Li, Dolph Lundgren and Mickey Rourke already signed up. The film will start shooting on the end of this month.

Dolph Lundgren and Sly Stallone together for the first time since Rocky IV! A dream for all violent action film geeks!

The film had better be rated R!!

"Expendable...that's when you're invited to a party and don't show up...nobody cares."
"Rambo, you're not expendable!"

Thursday, March 12, 2009

WSPC Culture Wars Podcast Available!

Podcasts of Culture Wars episodes are being made available at

Check out the entire hour broadcast on January 22...the infamous episode that inspired the disapproval of the New Jersey chapter of the Parents Television Council.

Take a listen and let us know if the brief discussion of my book, The Asian Influence on Hollywood Action Films was dangerous, subversive, and threatening enough to family values and The American Way of Life to warrant threats of boycotts against St. Peter's College. E-mail your comments to

What I'm still convinced of is that God must love crazy people, because He makes so many of them...and they're all members of whacko media watchdog groups like the PTC and they're listening to our show.

Now at least they can enjoy our programs over and over again! Hey, we take 'em where we can get 'em.

More episodes are being uploaded over the next few days!!

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Author Barbara Oakley on the Next Culture Wars

Be sure and catch today's episode of Culture Wars when Dr. Barbara Oakley discusses her book, Evil Genes: Why Rome Fell, Hitler Rose, Enron Failed, and My Sister Stole My Mother's Boyfriend, looking at the history of and the current science behind the behavior of the successfully sinister.
From brutal dictators to Machiavellian manipulators, murderous sadists, and rapacious corporate swindlers, Dr. Oakley discusses the research of where and how evil thrives.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

The Battles of Culture Wars

Check out a lengthy article about our Culture Wars show and our PTC run-ins.

I haven't yet discussed the boycott and donor issue here, but this story goes into the matter in detail. Once our ongoing podcasting delay has been resolved, everyone can listen at their convenience and hear how this matter played out on the program.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Satan is Watching You!?

So do these look like the eyes of the Antichrist?

Some Detroit politicians think so and they, apparently, have nothing better to do these days than waste time trying to get an MGM casino billboard removed. Check out the story here.

It looks like the good folks of Detroit put a lot of intelligent thought into the kinds of people they elect into office.

Although this example is absurd, stupid incidents like this help highlight one of the major problems of life in modern America: knee-jerk impulses to get the government to control speech and expression. If some nut-jobs in Detroit are disturbed by this billboard, thinking it shows the eyes of Satan looking at motorists (these people are probably close kissing cousins to the good folks who thought the theme song of the old Mr. Ed TV show contained Satanic lyrics when played backward and who had nothing better to do with their time than look for Satanic messages in Judas Priest and Black Sabbath songs), is it really the job of the local government to step in and censor MGM advertising?

The best part of the story is about the pastor's outrage at families with kids in the car having to see the billboard. The pastor, of course, could advise all those parents who might be disturbed that the same Bill of Rights that protects that billboard is the one that lets them go to church and worship any way they want.

As one of our Culture Wars fans recently wrote us, "Isn't America great?"

It sure is, even as it lets so many lunatics run around, mount protest campaigns, and get media attention.

Or this could be just another prelude to 2012!!!!!