Sex and violence in America

Posted by Pierre Igot in: Society
February 4th, 2004 • 5:32 am

I suspect most of you have heard about the so-called “breast-baring incident” during the Super Bowl half-time performance last Sunday. I know very little about American football and don’t watch it, so I didn’t see the thing live, but it was replayed several times during the Monday evening newscast on CBC here in Canada.

If what I saw is indeed all that happened, it shows once again how incredibly prudish and hypocritical US society is. Here’s what FCC chairman Michael Powell had to say:

I am outraged at what I saw during the halftime show of the Super Bowl. Like millions of Americans, my family and I gathered around the television for a celebration. Instead, that celebration was tainted by a classless, crass and deplorable stunt. Our nation’s children, parents and citizens deserve better.

In other words, it’s perfectly fine to let children watch an obviously violent sport involving 300-pound gorillas — it’s a “celebration“! — but a glimmer of a bare breast is outrageous?

Good grief. America really badly needs to grow up about sex. As University of Toronto criminologist Marian Valverde said recently in a Globe and Mail article about cybersex addiction:

The jury is out [on what damage viewing pornography does], but it’s not a positive contribution to our relationships. The solution is to widen the range of sexual representation. Porn is all there is. Which is a sad thing.

A very sad thing indeed.

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