Warning! May Contain Pornography.

I would ask that you examine the picture below. Does it arouse strong sexual urges? Do you feel the need to scream hysterically for the censor? Is this naked child an embarrassment to you? Perhaps, for the sake of James Dobson’s apoplexy, its posterior could be hidden by a judiciously placed silver star?

I happen to like pictures of naked babies. I’m no pervert. I just find them cute. Probably 98% of the planet’s human population would agree with me. Of the other two percent, half would be tainted by perverted lust and the rest would demand a silver star for the sake of something they call “common decency”.

Whatever that is.

A certain supermarket chain in the UK, which shall remain nameless even though owned outright by US parent company, Wal-Mart, falls into the latter category. Mister Walton’s British management team consider such pictures may constitute pornography. Consequently, when the stores ran a promotion offering cakes from their bakery with a customer’s photograph printed onto the surface, one lady asked for a birthday cake featuring a photo of a five-month-old baby, in similar state of undress to the one above. The store refused citing a company policy of “no nudity”.

Eventually, a compromise was reached once mom had agreed to a large silver star being strategically placed onto the photo to obliterate baby’s bottom.[1]

What have we become?

The answer is frighteningly simple, we’ve become a victim society.

A victim society occurs when civil liberties, freedom of speech and expression, suppression of natural feelings, are all curtailed to a large extent for fear of accusation.

The USA has perfected the victim society, though Britain is fast catching up. Basically, we create a victim society when we allow a tiny minority of criminal and perverted elements to affect, not only our daily lives, but the very manner of our thinking. Instead of accepting real, though extremely rare, dangers for what they are, we envisage every other being on the planet as harboring the potential to do us and ours harm. The result is a distrust of everyone, by everyone, and is undoubtedly the primary reason gun control in the United States is opposed by the majority, despite obvious evidence that guns contribute significantly to violent crime in the nation.

Since 9/11, the US government and its attendant media have pushed the victim society syndrome to its limits for political gain. We are all aware of the “terror threat” lurking around every corner.

Even colors considered vivid and beautiful when formed by the petals of a rose, become frightening when displayed in this manner. Yellow – be scared; Orange – be very scared; Red – take refuge in absolute hysteria.

The effect of such constant bombardment by fear and oppression is insidious. As a part-time school bus driver I am constantly warned by my bosses, “Never, never, touch a child”; “Don’t allow hugs”; “Avoid forms of affection”.

Some of my kids have ridden with me for four years. They were four and five years old and are now eight or nine. They feel they’ve known me all their lives, and almost they have. Yet, the minds of paranoid, heavily indoctrinated, adults can twist an innocent action into something that could cause the most appalling repercussions.

“Suffer little children to come unto me,” might well brand Jesus of Nazareth a pedophile in this Capitalist-Christian world of 2008.

The supermarket rule, “no naked photos on our cakes” is likely a ruling from the high and mighty Walton family themselves. A blanket law. Understandable, if I took a photo of myself in the buff, lying on a rug with my butt in the air. A silver star might certainly then be appropriate. Unless, of course, I was five months old, and not sixty-two.

But, after all, why condone any exception? Rules are rules and Heaven forbid the sales staff be given an opportunity to think – make decisions – for themselves, even those based on common sense. Blanket rules, blanket laws, allow no leeway in our victim societies. Corporate America, Corporate Europe, are in control. By keeping us in fear of each other they can manipulate us whichever way they desire.

And are we, the people, not our own worst enemies? We happily allow them to convince us that, above all, we must live in fear of each other.

[1] “Asda refuse to print baby snap…..because he’s naked”, Daily Mail, June 25th 2008

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6 Replies to “Warning! May Contain Pornography.”

  1. Fear, RJA, that’s how control works. Keep everybody’s nerves on edge. No one has time for fact checking. Keep the propaganda coming via Fundie Central and their mouthpiece Walmart…..
    Have you ever read The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Attwood? She foretold it all…..
    XO
    WWW

  2. Hmmmm – I’m having trouble getting past the vision of you, in your seniority, in the buff, atop a birthday cake, RJ – that’s a vision to conjure with indeed!

    It’s a sad old world these days, I agree. We’ve progressed so far in some ways, but regressed in others.

    Are we as fearful as “they” would believe though? There must be millions who’d agree with your fine posting, and pooh-pooh any idea that they are controlled by fear. Is the fear “they” would have us believe in nothing but a myth? Does anyone actually take notice of those coloured terror threat thingies? I know we didn’t in our civil service office in the UK when we’d be informed the IRA was likely to be acting up on a particular day. Shrugged shoulders were the usual reaction. But then – that was the UK!! Stiff upper lips and all that.

  3. Shall remain nameless, eh, RJ?

    Ahem, to avoid any possible future legal problems for you (or me), I’m going to use one of the lawers (and politicians) own ‘tricks’. I’m just going to pose a question, which you don’t need to answer of course.

    Is it true, Mr RJ, that that nameless UK crew is called ASDA? Heh.

  4. What made me laugh is that the BBC reporting of this (http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/merseyside/7474968.stm) printed the offending photo. So the mother, who only wanted a bit of fun to embarrass her 21 yr old son in front of his mates, has now embarrassed him in front of the whole country 🙂

    I had huge problems when volunteering for a youth club for autistic-spectrum children; I was waiting for my CRB check to come through (it took over 6m months!), but the children couldn’t understand why they weren’t allowed to hug me *now*! In the end, we compromised by making sure that there was always a CRB checked adult in the room whenever I was in there with a child. Then they could hug me to their hearts content…

  5. “Policy”, be it company or governmental, overrides common sense in the 21st century. It seems that every day we are moving closer towards a world that I want no part of. I’m glad I’m old.

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