While some industry analysts are convinced that effective self-regulation can prevent a government crack down, the FSC has a darker outlook on the situation.
"These [election] results are particularly bleak," said FSC Board Chair Jeffrey Douglas. "It's going to be really bad for the industry. You have a president whose attorney general is a Pentecostal lay minister who believes not only that virtually everything that everybody who works in the adult business does is a sin and that it is a grave sin for anybody to look at sexually explicit material; he believes that it is endangering his own soul to not combat it."
FSC believes that the opening salvo of the federal government's attack is likely to be the new 2257 regulations. Several First Amendment attorneys expect that those attacks, against both video production companies and Internet content suppliers, will come sooner rather than later. FSC is mounting legal challenges, and if an injunction is issued to stop enforcement of the regulations, FSC members will be protected.
"Even if Ashcroft retires, his efforts (like 2257) will quite likely continue to negatively impact the industry," stated Michelle Freridge, the executive director of FSC.
The FSC's lobbying efforts in California have so far prevented anti-adult business regulations from being enacted, and this year, Gov. Schwarzenegger signed into law the Access To Seized Records Act, which was written by an FSC member and the Legislative Coordinator who spent years developing sponsors for the legislation, which eventually was supported by virtually the entire California business and law enforcement communities.
But there is much more work to be done, says the FSC, citing that it is likely that President Bush will appoint at least two and possibly as many as four justices of the United States Supreme Court, including the Chief Justice and scores of federal district court and appeals court judges.
"Those are the people who are going to be making the evidentiary rulings and the sentencing decisions that affect potentially everybody in the industry," Douglas noted. "If one is prosecuted, the amount of damage that a Supreme Court justice can do to your life is far smaller than the amount of damage that can be done by the trial court."
Over the next four years, the FSC will protect the rights of adults to access adult materials, and they are asking for your support by joining them at www.freespeechcoalition.com.