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It may be up to parents to block Web porn

Schweddy

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Source: Yahoo News

For years, Congress has sought what amounts to a legislative Holy Grail: A law that would protect children from Internet pornography, stay relevant in the face of evolving technology, and not be too much of a restriction for adults who want to exercise their constitutional right to view sexually explicit materials.

On Tuesday, as the Supreme Court voted 5-4 to prevent the enforcement of a 1998 law that limits access to sexual materials on the Web, the justices suggested that Congress' latest attempt to regulate Internet porn might be futile. The debate among the justices suggested that legal protections for free speech could mean that parents, not the U.S. government, will have to be the barriers between youths and online porn. (Related story: Court upholds block of Web porn law)

The court ruled that the government had not shown that the Child Online Protection Act (COPA), which makes it a crime for commercial Web site operators to post "material that is harmful to minors," was the least restrictive way to keep children from pornography. The law, which requires the operators to use age-verification systems that usually require a credit card number, says violators can be fined up to $50,000 and imprisoned for up to six months.

The court's majority, noting that age-verification systems impose a burden on all of a Web site's users, said that filtering software on home computers might be a better way to keep kids from seeing porn while preserving the rights of adults.

"Filters are less restrictive than COPA," Justice Anthony Kennedy (news - web sites) wrote for the majority. "Under a filtering regime, adults without children may gain access to speech they have a right to see without having to identify themselves or provide their credit card information."

Kennedy said filter technology is improving. But dissenting justices said filters are fallible, can be expensive and depend on parent intervention. "More than 28 million school-age children have both parents or their sole parent in the workforce, at least 5 million children are left alone at home without supervision each week, and many ... (have) friends who may well have access to computers and more lenient parents," Justice Stephen Breyer (news - web sites) said in dissent. He estimated that filtering software costs $40.

As the challenge to COPA that was brought by the American Civil Liberties Union (news - web sites) and several online publishers heads back to lower courts, the debate among the justices shows the difficulty of regulating the Internet - and the likelihood that the 1998 law might never be enforced.

Kennedy said the court presumes that any government effort to limit explicit materials on the Web is unconstitutional. "Content-based prohibitions ... have the constant potential to be a repressive force in the lives and thoughts of a free people," he said. "To guard against that threat the Constitution demands that ... government bear the burden of showing their constitutionality. This is true even when Congress twice has attempted to find a constitutional means to restrict, and punish, the speech in question."

COPA followed the Communications Decency Act, which Congress passed in 1996 to make it a crime to send obscene or indecent messages to minors via e-mails, chat-room messages and Web sites. The justices struck down the law in 1997, saying it was too vague and broad. Congress then passed COPA, which targets commercial Web sites. (A 1996 law that banned computer-generated "virtual" child porn was rejected by the court in 2002. The justices said it could have banned works of art.)

Tuesday's decision was the second time the court had examined COPA. In 2002, the justices ruled on a narrow question, saying that courts can use "community standards" to identify material harmful to minors.

On Tuesday, the justices affirmed a lower court's order that blocked enforcement of COPA on grounds that it likely is unconstitutional. The case now goes to a trial court judge, who would hear the government's claim that COPA is the least restrictive way to protect children and that filters are not a sufficient alternative.

"We are very confident that the (trial) court would strike (COPA) down," ACLU attorney Ann Beeson said. "Just as with TV and movies, parents should set limits on what children will see." She questioned whether the government will continue to seek to have the law enforced.

Justice Department (news - web sites) spokesman Mark Corallo said the department "will continue to work to defend children from the dangerous predators who lurk" on the Web.

Reaction from Congress was mixed. Rep. Mark Foley (news, bio, voting record), R-Fla., said he was "stunned the high court, once again, sided with pornographers over children."

But Sen. Patrick Leahy (news, bio, voting record), D-Vt., who opposes COPA, said Congress should seek "solutions that do not just lull parents into a false sense of security ... but that can withstand the test of time and the scrutiny of the courts."
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I am mixed on this. I agree something needs to be done.
First amendment all the way, but the solution they have come up with will not solve the problem. Porn is available everywhere. Email, Newsgroups, web of course...
 
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Well I'm not mixed on this, if parents should regulate what their kids do on the internet, they also should prevent their kids from buying cigarettes or alcohol not the government. Phillip Morris ought to fight the government to remove the age limit on tobacco buying privelege. Movie ratings also should be reviewed and lifted. The list goes on and on about things or laws that gotta be reconsidered just because of that one ruling:
-That throws censorship on tv out the window
-age limit on voting
-They should not stop a minor from buying porn magazine either
-sex with a minor (parent are responsible for who your minor have sex with)
-age limit for driver's license
-indecent photograph of minors
Just to name a few...
 

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Schweddy

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-That throws censorship on tv out the window
-age limit on voting
-They should not stop a minor from buying porn magazine either
-sex with a minor (parent are responsible for who your minor have sex with)
-age limit for driver's license
-indecent photograph of minors
LP, you are more and more sounding like a troll. Do you honestly believe these?
 
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Yes it's the same "double standard" thing that exist in this country. A couple of law makers got fat pocket from an industry and they will make laws to protect it even if it contradicts previously passed laws.
 

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Schweddy

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The Liberal Puke said:
Yes it's the same "double standard" thing that exist in this country. A couple of law makers got fat pocket from an industry and they will make laws to protect it even if it contradicts previously passed laws.
Would you provide some examples of the "double standard"?
 
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I've provided quite a few already. one the most obvious one's:
It's not okay for kids to buy porn magazine in a store but it's okay for them to pull up porn from the internet.
 
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hmm, just another post that stems back to people taking responsibility for themselves and their children. why can't EVERYONE get off their asses and do what is right. quit expecting someone else to raise their kids period! I sure as hell won't do it, I already have one to worry about.
 

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Interesting style of writing. At first I thought you disagreed with me.

Honestly, I don't know why people expect the government to raise their children. Generally, I find in a censored environment, information that I want in gets censored and the stuff I want out, worms it's way in.

I have some examples, but keep in mind that some of these movements were not successful.

Censorship:

Removing GOD from the pledge.
Removal of flags from fire trucks.
Banning Fahrenheit 451.
Blocking sites with the word "adult" in the address.
http://www.spacecamp.com/camponline/spacecamp/adult/
(honest to god, I had to explain why I went to the above adult site once.)

The battle is over the obvious things right now, but that's how it starts. Of course we don't want our children surfing porn. Of course we would like to protect them from predators, but we can't trust the government to make those decisions for us. No one can decide what's best for our children than WE can and in order to make those decisions, we have to be active in our children's activities.
 
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Liberal finger wrote:
but we can't trust the government to make those decisions for us. No one can decide what's best for our children than WE can and in order to make those decisions
Nobody is aking to trust the government to raise our kids for us or make decisions for us. We just need the government to step in a regulate things that we have no control over. STOP THE MADNESS!!
 

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Tasmin

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As a soon to be parent, I want to protect my child, raise him right, complete with values and all that good stuff. I wouldn't want my child to see some of the garbage out there. I do believe that as a parent it is mine and my spouse's responsibility to raise my child, not Uncle Sam. That includes access to stuff to which I don't want to expose my child. The Federales have no business and it is up to parents to assume the responsibility laid out before them. Or would you rather have a nice shiny, clean, sanitized, politically correct society free of risk, free of responsibility, free of hard decisions, free of choice, free of freedom.
:soap
 

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Tasmin I find myself agreeing more and more with your posts.
 

jcueckert13

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liberal puke the reason alcohol and tobacco are regulated is because they present a health risk. when was the last time you heard of porn causing death? it may lead to wacking off but not death.
 

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Nobody is aking to trust the government to raise our kids for us or make decisions for us. We just need the government to step in a regulate things that we have no control over. STOP THE MADNESS!!
What we are looking at here is a classic debate. (by classic, I mean it goes WTF back.) Can a population be trusted to censor itself without the intervention of governing body's interferance.

Liberals tend to beleive that it is acceptable to use the government to improve quality of life even at the cost of personal liberties.

Examples:
Minimum wage
Federal Financial Aid
and the Patriot Act.
 

Tasmin

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...when was the last time you heard of porn causing death? it may lead to wacking off but not death....
Hmm. I hear tell that wacking off causes blindness, or hairy palms. In the case of the former, going blind and thus tripping and hitting your head on a stone, potentially fatal. In the case of the latter, say you get embarrassed and decide to shave your palm. The phone rings. Startled, you jump, the razor slips, slicing open your wrist, potentially fatal. :D

I digress. It is a classic debate. You simply cannot legislate morality, especially in an age of moral relativism. Likewise, you can't protect your kids from every danger, pitfall. I still say that it's none of Uncle Sam's business.
 

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jcueckert13

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this idea that the government can stop childeren from seeing porn is pure bs. i bought my first playboy when i was 14 and i did it at school. i did not even find out about the wonderful world of internet porn till i was 17, by then i already had bought 7 porn mags on the mid and high school campuses.
 
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I'm misunderstood. I'm not asking for the government to stop kids like yourself from watching porn, this is your parent's job. All I'm asking is that the billboards are being kept in Las Vegas, not in front of my door. Is that too much to ask for my tax money?
 

Schweddy

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I'm not asking for the government to stop kids like yourself from watching porn, this is your parent's job. All I'm asking is that the billboards are being kept in Las Vegas, not in front of my door. Is that too much to ask for my tax money?
Indeed!!

Likewise, you can't protect your kids from every danger, pitfall. I still say that it's none of Uncle Sam's business.
I disagree. What do you think the government is FOR if not to legislate moraility? Your vision of morality may be different than mine. A government defines those moralities. Anarchy is the lack of government and morals all together.

Do you really want your child brought up in a moral-less society?

In the times of old, morals didn't really need to be legislated as specific as they need to be today. Everyone attended church or if they didn't they knew what was publically acceptable. Radio, in the early days, did not need a law to keep them from saying the wrong thing. The masses took care of them if they were inappropriate. Today however is another mess. People do not care and believe that the first amendment is being trampled upon when the FCC has to dictate what can/cannot be said on public media.

Back to topic. Of course you cannot protect your kids from every danger. That would be completely silly to think. But, you can (with the governments assistance) regulate what your child can watch on TV and in the Movies. If the FCC rules were not in effect, how would you know that a movie just realeased is really porn? Or is so violent that it is HARMFUL to a child? Or even if they are telling the kid to go out and kill?

Of course a shallow person would say to watch everything before the child does.

No way in hell will I be able to watch everything before my kid does. I do not want to switch the channel and my kiddo see the wrong thing. Once, not a big deal - or even occationally. Then I could use that incident to talk to my child. All the time is quite another! When my kid stays the night at a friends house when he is older - why should I have to worry if the movie he watches is completly inappropriate. Kids will be kids and experiment or purchase a playboy that some smue stole from daddy's stash. They sneak it because they KNOW that it's wrong. Else, why would they be hiding that fact? If you let playboys and such become an item that anyone can buy - there would be no sneaking - there would be no 'wrong' to it. Thus, it would become acceptable behavior for kids.

As a matter of fact, I remember stealing my dads mags.

If you believe that kids should be able purchase playboys or erotic material because of the first amendemt - then you are just as pathetic as the persons selling the items and have no morals.
 

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I'm fairly certain that no one here would like to see sex and the city sandwiched between Yu-Gi-Oh and DragonballZ. It would be unwise to assume that anyone who is against censorship by the government is
all for such juxtapositions.
Ok, then how do we STOP this type of activity? I believe that a 5 year old shouldn't see a playboy or erotic video on public TV - Joe Shmoe down the streen may not have an issue with it.

Unfortunatly, we have lost the times of common sense!

Laws should be and are there for the stupid people. Religeon no longer plays a part in this process. This is why we elect people to carry out OUR will. If the elected officals are not doing what you believe is correct or moral - vote someone else in or petition them out.
 

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Vauge!

Dude, you edited my post on accident instead of posting a reply!

See the violence inherent in the system!

Help! Help! I'm being repressed!
 

Schweddy

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Damnit, I got to quit doing that!

I go for the quote button, but hit the edit... :eek:ops
 
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Laws should be and are there for the stupid people. Religeon no longer plays a part in this process. This is why we elect people to carry out OUR will. If the elected officals are not doing what you believe is correct or moral - vote someone else in or petition them out.
Pardon my rudeness here but LiberalFinger when was the last time you voted for a representative or a senator? When was the last time you contacted him/her/them about anything?

Yes we tend to believe that elected officials really carry out OUR will, sorry to break the news to you they don't and there's nothing you can do about it. How many elected officials have been petioned out of office? maybe a handful; does that mean a handful aren't carrying out OUR will? No. :eek:t

So let's come back on the topic (since I'm being monitored) to answer LiberalFinger's question:

Ok, then how do we STOP this type of activity?
That's why we have government, all 3 branches.
 

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Liberal Puke. . .

Please direct your post to Vauge.

He accidentally edited my post instead of qouting mine.

Perhaps you missed it. Eh. . . it's all good.

Oh, by the way, it's been approximately 3 months since I contacted my senator. I don't do it as often as I should. There. You caught me.
 

Schweddy

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Quote:
Laws should be and are there for the stupid people. Religeon no longer plays a part in this process. This is why we elect people to carry out OUR will. If the elected officals are not doing what you believe is correct or moral - vote someone else in or petition them out.


Pardon my rudeness here but LiberalFinger when was the last time you voted for a representative or a senator? When was the last time you contacted him/her/them about anything?
I believe this should be directed at ME. To answer your question - Tuesday, July 27th.

And you?

Yes we tend to believe that elected officials really carry out OUR will, sorry to break the news to you they don't and there's nothing you can do about it. How many elected officials have been petioned out of office? maybe a handful; does that mean a handful aren't carrying out OUR will? No. Off Topic!
You are most correct. This is indeed becoming an off topic thread.

So let's come back on the topic (since I'm being monitored) to answer LiberalFinger's question:
Of course you are being monitored! This is not an adult pornography site.This is a DEBATE forum with RULES. Feel free to read them again because when you signed up - you agreed to abide by them.
 
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