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The Insidious Aspect of Real or Acted Violence Against Women - Research Paper Example

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The paper describes the effect on society of this constant drip-feed of pornography and violence that is that women come to be viewed as toys to be used and not to be taken seriously when a case of sexual harassment. Women are portrayed as enjoying their humiliation and degradation…
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The Insidious Aspect of Real or Acted Violence Against Women
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Download file to see previous pages The First Amendment and more recent decisions by the U.S. Supreme Court (e.g. The Miller test) already allow for exceptions to freedom of speech if the speech contains obscenity or shows sexual conduct in an offensive way. But Mackinnon argues that this is not enough when it comes to the issue of pornography. Rather than being exposed to obscenity, it is the actual harm that women suffer as a consequence of men consuming a diet of violent pornography and she wishes the First Amendment to be adapted so that the publication of images and material that leads to violence against women is included and addressed by it. MacKinnon was instrumental in drafting the Antipornography Civil Rights Ordinance which proposed to consider pornography as a violation of women's civil rights and to allow women to seek damages if they felt they had been harmed by pornography. However, the Ordinance was repeatedly struck out by US courts who found that the Ordinance violates the freedom of speech principle of the First Amendment. But it is also necessary to change the public – and particularly male – the perception of pornography, although this will be a very long-term process. The US has a strong tradition of civil liberties and any attempt at introducing a form of censorship may quickly lose public support. One should also consider that any model of censorship, the opposite of freedom of speech, has the potential of ultimately silencing far more people on many more subjects. Freedom is a precious good, and the price we pay is the potential abuse of it. ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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