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OP/ED on Stagliano Trial & More by The Colonel

Buttman Goes To Washington

By The Colonel


We live in such interesting times; chaotic, unbalanced, scary, and yet oddly interesting. I never imagined I’ll witness the beginning of the very end of America in my lifetime: The return of the great depression, systematic destruction of the middle class, collapse of privacy and civil rights; and in the midst of it all, the trial of a middle aged smut peddler who has a lifelong obsession with female bottom and calls himself Buttman.  His guilt is distributing movies depicting consenting adults performing sexual acts for the entertainment and viewing pleasure of consenting adults; and this is not happening in The Islamic Republic of Iran, this is happening in The United States of America. Perhaps we better stop jerking ourselves off with “the land of the free” schtick. It has become a worn out joke that doesn’t mean anything anymore.

The more I look at the current events, the more I realize how the United States government is getting more lazy, pathetic and shameless at orchestrating conspiracies, whether that conspiracy is crashing airplanes to buildings in broad daylight in order to start wars, or bringing down the financial market in order to gain control over it, or putting a pornographer on trial in order to send a warning message to the adult industry and create theatrical impressions. They don’t even care whether people believe and buy their bullshit or not, they just do what they please. Let’s take a closer look at the trial of Buttman and examine its facts to see how phony it is:

1. John Stagliano AKA Buttman is being accused of distributing obscene material. The movies in question contain scenes of girls dressed as nuns while fucking, and doing milk enema on each other. The aforementioned movies were neither produced nor directed by Stagliano, they were distributed by his video distribution company Evil Angel. A good question is why the government has decided to go after the middle man who has distributed the movies for a %30 profit shares instead of the people who have financed and directed the movies? The answer is because those people were not as famous as John Stagliano, and they would not make good candidates for the government’s celebrity trial. Furthermore, the nature of the material in these movies pales in comparison to the nature of tons of material which is available in porn market. Any fair, rational, unbiased and unprejudiced person can compare dressing as nuns and milk enema to humiliation, extreme bondage and depictions of rape, torture and murder and decide which is worse and where the line must be drawn; and how and based on what the limitations of acceptable behavior should be defined.  If a person inflicts actual, physical and/or psychological harm on another person under the pretence of making movies, then what he does could and should be considered wrong and he must be stopped; but as long as two persons are engaged in consenting sex without harming each other, no person, no government, no institution and no law should have the right to interfere with them and disturb them. Period.

2. The persecution team tends to establish its obscenity case against John Stagliano based on what is known as The Miller Test which was developed in the 1973 case Miller vs. California in order to determine whether a speech or expression can be labeled obscene or not. The Miller test has three parts:

A. Whether the average person, applying “contemporary community standards”, would find that the work, taken as a whole, appeals to the prurient interest,

B. Whether the work depicts/describes, in a patently offensive way, sexual conduct specifically defined by applicable state law,

C. Whether the work, taken as a whole, lacks artistic, literary, political or scientific value.

The work is considered obscene only if all three conditions are satisfied.

The key in this case is to define “contemporary community standards” in 21st century America, and then explaining how those “community standards” have been offended. The word “community” is derived from the Old French communité which is derived from the Latin communitas, a broad term for fellowship or organized society. In sociology, the concept of community has led to significant debate, and sociologists are yet to reach agreement on a definition of the term. There were 94 discrete definitions of the term by the mid 1950s. Traditionally a “community” has been defined as a group of interacting people living in a common location. The word is often used to refer to a group that is organized around common interests and values and is attributed with social cohesion within a shared geographical location, generally in social units larger than a household. The word can also refer to the national community or global community. However, since the invention of the internet, the concept of community no longer has geographical limitations, as people from around the globe can now gather in an online community and share common interests and values regardless of physical location. Let’s put it this way: A speech or expression can no longer be labeled obscene based on the community standards, because there is no such thing as geographical and physical community any longer. In 1973, porn movies were being shown in sleazy hole-in-the-wall theatres, with the posters of performers and scene descriptions on public display outside the theatres. During that time, one could argue that the co-existence of a XXX theatre with the school in a particular neighborhood is unacceptable. Today, porn movies are no longer being shown in XXX theatres; they’re available to everybody who has a DVD player or cable subscription or internet access who can watch whatever he wants in the privacy of his home. He doesn’t need to interfere with anybody to get what he wants to watch, all he needs to do is to sit in his room and press a button.  Hence, his act of watching porn does not interfere with any interests and values except for his own.  In other words, in 21st century America every individual is a community, and therefore community standards are personal and private and cannot be determined by an outdated method like The Miller Test.

3. Upon examining the obscenity case against John Stagliano, it becomes evident that the case has no merits and no logic or moral principle can justify the existence of such case in 21st century America. Therefore, it becomes evident that pursuing this case by the U.S government is not about the justice, law or well being of U.S citizens; this case is designed to send the adult industry a warning message, to tarnish the boundaries of the government intervention in privacy and rights of its citizens, and above all, it’s a theatrical gimmick to further divert people’s attention from the real issues and clear and present dangers such as two ongoing, seemingly endless wars, double-dip recession,  steep rise in unemployment and severe budget deficit, dangers that are threatening the very fabrics of America, and soon will turn this once decent country into a desolate land. Evil is not in graphic depictions of consenting adults having sex, evil is in despair, fear and financial stress; and today that evil is looming over America and its sinister presence can be felt in every American home, every American school and every American neighborhood. I don’t know if it’s too late for America or is there still hope; but I remember a quote from James Davidson who once wrote:

“In a Democracy the people get what the majority deserves.”

Disturbing but true.

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