Brian Ribbon writes: "During the Queen's speech, it was today announced that the "Criminal Justice and Immigration Bill" intends to criminalise the mere possession of "extreme" or "violent" adult pornography. Many flawed and deceitful arguments (often used to justify the criminalisation of the possession of child porn) have been used, including claims that the possessor will somehow "harm" the victim every time the image is viewed, and the unproven belief that the possessor will be "corrupted" by the images and will then act out his fantasies. The "evidence" (pdf) used to justify this aim of the bill came from a study solicited by the Ministry of Justice, conducted by feminist activists. Will the British government ever cease to use pseudo-science in order to invade the private lives of its citizens?"
Brian Ribbon writes: "Radio Netherlands is reporting that the EU is planning to force all of its members to criminalise the viewing of child pornography on the internet. While many people will consider this to be a necessary measure to protect the children, it fails to consider the fact that the downloading of material — without payment — does not encourage those who produce such material, rather it simply offends the public. The production of child pornography is currently the only crime which can't be observed; even watching a video of a murder is legal, yet the EU are demanding even stricter forms of censorship of sexual material. Is such censorship justified, or is it a symptom of a moral panic?"
Brian Ribbon writes: "The British government has announced that it will soon be illegal to possess nude child art, which includes drawings, sculptures and computer generated images depicting nude children. While it is difficult to deny that some people will support this new law, should we really believe that this is about protecting children, or is it simply another example of popularist politics from a government official who desperately needs to improve his public image?"
Brian Ribbon writes: "The BBC has a report regarding a study into child welfare by international charity Unicef, which reveals that the US and UK have the lowest levels of child welfare out of 21 countries studied. The study measured child welfare using six categories; family and peer relationships, material well-being, health and safety, behaviour and risks, and children's own sense of well-being (educational and subjective).
Is it a coincidence that the countries which have the most draconian legislation disguised as measures to protect children also have the lowest level of child welfare, or is the level of paranoia and hysteria in these countries actually harming children?"
Brian Ribbon writes: "The Daily Mail is reporting that Police in the UK will be given unlimited access to the homes of convicted sex offenders. They claim that these powers will allow them to prevent future acts of child molestation, but are they correct in their assumption that most sex offenders — paedophiles or otherwise — are child molesters? Could the government simply be testing new powers against a group which is frequently used as a scapegoat?"