The 1st District Court of Appeals in San Francisco granted inmate Andres Martinez the right to read a werewolf erotica novel in prison. The book in question was The Silver Crown by Mathilde Madden (a pseudonym used by Guardian contributor, Mathilda Gregory).
NPR says the two year legal battle to read the book began when guards at Pelican Bay State Prison confiscated the novel on the grounds that it was pornographic.
According to TIME, California banned porn from prisons in 2002 to prevent inmates from creating a “hostile work environment” for female guards. But in the 1973 case of Miller vs. California, The U.S. Supreme Court ruled that if a literary work has scientific or political value, it can’t be deemed “obscene.” Outlawing all works that describe sex would go against the standard.
So, after 30 pages of decision making, the court decided that the book possesses “serious literary value” and doesn’t qualify as straight up porn. The Warden of Pelican Bay State Prison has been ordered to “allow petitioner to receive, possess, and read his copy of The Silver Crown.” Victory.
And if this erotica scandal isn’t hot enough for the press, the first female deputy CIA director, Avril Haines, is being what Salon calls “slut-shamed” for hosting “erotica nights.”
According to The Daily Beast, in the 1990s, Haines co-owned Adrian’s Book Cafe in Baltimore, Md. The cafe used to feature events where published guests would read their erotic prose. Apparently, Haines even read some racy excerpts herself from Anne Rice’s Sleeping Beauty Trilogy.
FJP: What does any of this have to do with the fact that Haines is the new CIA director? Nothing. So why bring it up?
Media Matters suggests that the press applies a “shockingly different standard” to what they cover in regards to accomplished females vs. males in Washington D.C. The media assumes that a woman’s sexuality, or even what she wears, defines who she is (see: Purse Politics: Tote and Vote), and that’s a standard that’s “almost never applied to male counterparts.”
Would this story be being beaten to death (here, here, here, here, here, and here, to name only a few articles) if Haines was a man who used to be into smutty reading nights? Or is a woman’s sexuality just infinitely more interesting? Also… if a male inmate can read what he wants, shouldn’t Haines have the same right? - Krissy
My local watering hole usually has newspapers on the bar counter. Makes for easy reading over a beer.
A few weeks ago I came across this full-page ad in the New York Post. It’s for a “documentary” called “Dreams From My Real Father” and takes birtherism to even weirder, alternative heights.
As Talking Points Memo explains, “Instead of focusing on claims about the president’s Hawaiian birth certificate, the film is narrated by an Obama impersonator and claims the president is a closeted communist, bent on instilling a ‘classic Stalinist-Marxist agenda upon America at home and abroad.’ A disclaimer for the film notes that many of the scenes are ‘re-creations of probable events, using reasoned logic, speculation, and approximated conversations.’”
It does so by claiming that Obama’s real father was Frank Marshall Davis, a former journalist, and civil rights and labor activist. Evidently, he got Obama’s mom pregnant, which was scandalous, so the family invented a Kenyon father instead which was somehow less scandalous.
If you’ve worked in print you know that the ad department looks for advertisers who reflect well on — and reinforce — the brand. Have a luxury magazine, your sales team is looking for luxury brands. Have a sports magazine, your sales team looks for advertisers that reiterate that lifestyle.
If you’re the New York Post? Well, form follows function.
And if you’re from Alabama, your GOP party chair is a nut job.
As The Mobile Press Register recently reported, Bill Armistead was speaking to a Republican Women’s group and had this to say:
“We have to win this election. This is about our country. Our country will not be the same,” Armistead said. “I’m convinced, if Obama wins, our children and grandchildren will not live under the same conditions that we’ve lived in these wonderful years. Obama has a different ideology than we do.”
Armistead suggested that audience members see the movie ‘2016: Obama’s America,’ a documentary by conservative commentator Dinesh D’Souza that is critical of the president.
“If you haven’t seen it, you should,” he said. “But I’m going to tell you about another movie. The name of it is ‘Dreams From My Real Father.’ That is absolutely frightening. I’ve seen it. I verified that it is factual, all of it. People can determine.”
People can determine, indeed. — Michael
Image: Full page ad in the New York Post for Dreams from My Real Father.
About 700 protesters were arrested after a horde of anti-Wall Street demonstrators swarmed the Brooklyn Bridge yesterday, halting traffic for more than three hours and clashing with cops on the famed span.
Up to 100 cars were left stranded as the loud, angry crowd covered the crossing from end to end in an inflamed day of demonstrations against high unemployment, bank bailouts and financial pain for the masses.
One irate driver, a Ground Zero construction worker, was livid.
“I work my ass off all day, and these goddamned hippies close down the Brooklyn Bridge so I can’t get home?” he said. “This ain’t right!”