Friday, December 09, 2005

It's getting extreme....

This whole Christmas and Freedom of Expression issue continues to provoke debate. Please read suzie's post on the Hanging of Santa.

Here is my comment on her post:

Well, it is freedom of expression, but so is pornography which we have deemed unsuitable for children. People should be more sensitive on BOTH sides of that issue. A gagged (blindfolded, actually, but same difference) and hanging Santa could be considered harmful to children in the same way that certain books, films, games, etc. are. How are parents supposed to protect their children from violent displays if there are no regulations? Yes, we have Freedom of Speech, but it is regulated to protect certain groups. There are laws about not placing Adult stores, liquor stores, etc. within certain proximity to Schools, Day Cares, Churches, etc.

As for paint color and grass height, there are MANY neighborhood associations that regulate those things and fine homeowners for violations.

I have never seen a Halloween lawn display that is this gruesome/offensive. Not that there haven't been somewhere, but most people are more considerate of others than to do that. When exercising our Freedom of Expression we HAVE to be more considerate of other people, esp. children.

If my neighbor did this I'd go over and ask him nicely to take it down because it is too violent for my kids. Do you think that most cities would allow a billboard with this picture on it?

Again, I find it ironic that it's the same people who find this offensive (borrowed kristi's link to this picture- I'm not picking on kristi here)

but not this (borrowed suzie's picture)

who are the first to cite First Amendment rights of free expression to defend their offensive actions. The Freedom of Expression is not a free pass to say or do anything you want regardless of the consequences.

Would we tolerate a person passing out pictures to our children with this image? Do the people who have no problem with the Hanging Santa have a problem with pictures of aborted babies that protestors carry around? Do people not care about how things affect children?


Nick Danger said...

abusing the first amendment hurts the first amendment

mr_g said...

It's certainly within his rights to hang it, but it is definintely in poor taste and most likely goes against many community standards. Perhaps a local ordinance would be appropriate to prevent something like this. And unfortunately, or fortunately depending on your perspective, the 1st Amednment protects people's rights to make offensive speech. And it doesn't stop people from exercising their right not to look or listen.

Sylvana said...

Although I can appreciate the message that the person may be trying to convey with these displays, I have to say that I agree with both Nick Danger and Mr G completely!

Kat said...

I'm offended by both pictures! I would never want one of my kids to see them. The first ammendment is such a touchy area. I think some people push the limits just because they can.

Both were in very poor taste.

Mike said...

Some people aren't content in just letting us assume their stupidity...they have to do something like this to prove it.

I'm all for people believing in whatever they want to believe....but public displays such as that are out of line.

Assorted Babble by Suzie said...

Rae Ann I am very happy you featured these despicable displays and your response to freedom of speech for adults to see. I am still in AWE at the few that feel this is acceptable. Your response summed up exactly the way I feel and there ARE regulations as you stated to protect certain groups. This clearly crosses the line for being suitable for children. Actually, my grown daughter had a dream last night in regards to this violent display and she expressed how disturbing it was to her. I can’t even imagine an innocent child witnessing this openly viewed for the whole neighborhood to see or being a parent having to explain it. The children must feel devastated, as do the parents.

To answer your questions, ABSOLUTELY I would have a problem with it; passing pictures and imagery you referred to - most certainly. I am beginning to wonder, if some people TRULY DO CARE about children and what affects them. Children are helpless unless adults stand up for their protection and rights. It is sad enough for what they are exposed to nowadays as it is - without traumatizing them more with displays like this. I can’t even imagine what you questioned.

Today - Saturday the Neo-Nazi hate groups are demonstrating in Toledo and causing problems as they did Oct 15 as well as other hate groups allowed to promote their hatred by saying it is their right for freedom of speech or expression. I think this also should have some type of regulation, not to mention endangering other law-abiding citizens that they may affect.

Do others SINCERELY believe that displays and/or demonstrations of hatred and violence should have rights? Not in my opinion!

SierraBella said...

Thanks for linking this.
I totally agree with Nick Danger.

Poor taste is one thing, but this is a whole 'nother level!

Rainypete said...

Isn't it ironic that those whith the largest fear of not being able to speak their mind typically have very little of merit to say?

Rae Ann said...

nick, absolutely!

mr g, yeah, we can all 'not look' at stuff. That applies to everyone.

sylvana, yeah, I agree with them too, but we have to remember that 'offensive' is a gray area.

kat, I have to admit I'm not offended by the gutted deer, but I don't think it's an appropriate public display, unless you live in the boonies.

mike, me too!

suzie, did you see on the news this morning about the bloody, child-murdering Santa display that some guy in NY put up? The First Amendment does not protect rated R stuff on the street.

sierrabella, if someone wants a hanging Santa then they should put it in their living room and not in public view.

rainypete, so true!!