Home > Features > Here We Go, Again…. • Bookmark   • Newsletters   • Register Search Options


Here We Go, Again….

Here We Go, Again….

March 14, 2008
Text size: 
Get XBIZ News
XBIZ Research
Will virtual reality boost the paysite market?
Yes, it will soon
Yes, but in a few years
Out of 179 votes. Results based on votes submitted by members of XBIZ.net social network.
Yes, another set of doubtlessly earnest yet entirely misguided souls has demonstrated a complete lack of understanding concerning the “Miller test” for legal obscenity.

This time around, it is certain members of the Kansas State Senate and community activists who are not happy with reading material being given to students in the Blue Valley School District who appear to have missed at least one prong of the Miller test in their zeal to clean up Kansas’ classroom reading lists.

According to a report from the Kansas City Star, Sen. Karin Brownlee has proposed a measure that would “require school boards in the state to review supplemental classsroom materials that parents might challenge as obscene.”

“What’s acceptable in San Francisco may not be in Kansas,” Brownlee reportedly said to the House Education Committee. “Let the school board set the community standard.”

Fair enough — but what parents “might challenge as obscene” and what can be considered legally obscene are two very different kettles of fish, as I’ve blogged about before.

Apparently, one of the books that have drawn the ire of Blue Valley parents is Cormac McCarthy’s “All the Pretty Horses.” The book has some tough stuff in it, no doubt, and it is arguably not the sort of the thing that is appropriate for kids — however, there is no way one can claim the book is legally obscene.

Now, obviously I can't reproduce the work "as a whole" here, but a quick look at one of its passages will give some idea why I object to the book being termed "obscene."

”What he loved in horses was what he loved in men, the blood and the heat of the blood that ran them. All his reverence and all his fondness and all the leanings of his life were for the ardent hearted and they would always be so and never be otherwise.”

Clearly, these are words that appeal to the “prurient interest,” right? How much more “patently offensive” does it get?

Anybody who argues that the book “lacks serious literary value” (as a work must in order to be considered legally obscene) frankly doesn’t know the first thing about literature. To claim that McCarthy’s work is not literature is not just disingenuous, it is delusional.

This is not to say that parents are ‘wrong’ to think that McCarthy’s work is inappropriate reading for children. I’m not closed to that argument, and I do think parents should get fairly considerable say in what their children read, watch or otherwise consume, especially during their child's early, formative years.

To frame this discussion as an obscenity issue, however, is absurd — "patently" so, I’d have to say.


Porn ‘Public Health Crisis’ Is False, Dangerous

We are witnessing the early stages of a moral panic, the likes of which we have not seen since the Reagan Administration. As I write this, there are 27 states in the process of passing mandatory porn... More »

The Skinny on the New DMCA Requirement

The requirements under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) have changed, but the sky is not falling. We have, even as a law firm, been hit with an unbelievable amount of spam sent out by law firms... More »

2017 Outlook: Legal Matters Around the Corner

The adult entertainment business’ legal community recently weighed in the top issues that companies and the industry, as a whole, should be concerned about. XBIZ asked industry attorneys to discuss... More »
Stay informed of the latest industry developments. Get XBIZ newsletters delivered to your inbox. Subscribe today!
Enter email address:

* To manage existing subscriptions click here.

Submit your press release to
multiple news outlets with 1 click.
Subscribe to RSS news feeds or
add free content to your website.
Access XBIZ news and articles
with your mobile device.
Access the latest issues of the industry's leading trade publications in digital form. View online or download for offline viewing.


XBIZ.net Paysite Meetup

May 04 - May 04
Prague, Czech Republic

Eurowebtainment 2017

May 17 - May 20
Majorca, Spain

XBIZ Retreat

May 30 - Jun 03
Miami, Florida

XBIZ Miami 2017

May 30 - Jun 02
Miami, Florida
Everyday thousands of business professionals browse XBIZ's industry directory for quality products and services. Not listed yet? Your company could be losing potential new business. Submit your company today!
Use XBIZ RSS feeds to stay informed of the latest industry developments or as a content syndication tool for your website!