LONDON — Documents just released by the National Archives reveal that when Margaret Thatcher was prime minister of England, she considered banning sex toys to protect “public decency” using anti-pornography laws, Newsweek reports.
The documents also show Thatcher met with Mary Whitehouse, the anti-obscenity campaigner, at least twice.
Thatcher’s cabinet was allegedly concerned about the potential safety risk posed by sex toys.
“Some of the items in circulation are most objectionable, including some which can cause physical injury,” a note from Leon Brittan, who was home secretary, wrote in 1986.
Brittan said there was a “strong case” to bring sex toys under the “deprave and corrupt” test, which was part of the 1959 Obscene Publications Act. He also acknowledged the difficulty of banning “sex aids” with a law designed solely for pornography.
However, as other new outlets have pointed out, Thatcher was one of a few Conservative MPs who voted to decriminalize homosexuality in the ‘60s. Which is not too say she was a gay rigths pioneer exactly, as it was under her government that Section 28, which banned “promoting” homosexuality, was introduced.