Mike Madriaga 3 p.m., June 22
Decimal System About to Get Dewier: SF Library Encourages Porn Watching
Fred Willard's good name is dragged through the mud after the funnyman is caught masturbating in a XXX Santa Monica theatre (allegedly), but in San Francisco, it's okay to watch porn at the public library.
Let's take a moment to pause and reflect during this brief musical interlude:
In response to complaints from patrons fed up with computer banks being turned into stall theatres, the San Francisco Public Library has agreed to install plastic hoods that allow only the user to see what's on the screen.
In my day the public library was a place for kids to go when answers to research assignments forced them to look outside the walls of their comparatively puny public school book repository. I felt like Geraldo Rivera entering a Halfway House when last I visited the downtown branch of the San Diego Public Library.
Should access to pornographic content be filtered in a public setting? Who wants some nimrod seated next to them on an airplane or at Starbucks watching Forrest Hump on an exposed laptop?
According to a library spokesperson, the plastic shields are "for their privacy, and for ours." Can't we have a little decorum? Must every public space be converted into an Orgasmatron?
Prohibiting a person's right to view pornographic images in public has nothing to do with censorship. Where I come from we call it common respect and decency. The same goes for people who wear t-shirts with the word 'F-ck' emblazoned across it, especially in a public place where children are around. It's bad form. Sport a Fuct shirt instead. At least it imparts a modicum of wit for impressionable minds to absorb.
Let children enjoy their childhoods by keeping open displays of porn and profanity as far away from them as possible. They'll catch on soon enough.
Source: The New York Times
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