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NeoNotes — Off Limits

I specifically mentioned keeping peace with my neighbors twice. I'm all for negotiations.

BUT (and it's a damn big BUT), there's a lot to negotiate. What's obscene to one isn't necessarily obscene to another.

Does it belong in public? That's another damn big BUT. What's the difference between 15 year old jailbait and a nursing mother? Someone objects to that bikini but not those yoga pants. Almost all of your objections were to male genitals displayed in public.

There's at least one speculative theory that I guarantee would make you never look at the Christian fish the same way again. It is "true?" Who knows? But it would make you think about your feelings. That's one thing that art is supposed to do.

I still maintain that the societal repression as opposed to personal discipline when it comes to nudity and sexual themes have hurt our culture. But that topic is "off limits."

Now, do I think public sex play like the Folsom Street Fair should be celebrated? By the people involved, certainly. By the media who are looking for "freaks of the day," and let people thousands of miles away tsk tsk, no. It was imposed on you, but not by the people celebrating.

There are a lot of public impositions I would love to change. The Decalogue on public property. Prayers before public meetings (does that mean that decisions made are sanctioned by the Divine and therefore Cannot Be Questioned?) The unspoken assumption that I must keep my pagan symbols and rites out of the public eye lest I offend someone for attacking their religion.

Behind locked doors and privacy fences, I am "free to do what I want." But is that freedom?

When you write about what "most" people want to see and hear, it's the flip side of political correctness. When it comes to rights, it's not about what "most" want. Rights are about what one chooses, the things that cannot be denied by most.

Is that "appropriate" for children? Funny how that suddenly trumps freedom, isn't it? That begs the question what are we teaching, conformity or freedom?

These are things I want to discuss. But they are off limits because they are not acceptable.

Pity.


Public nudity doesn't bother me. The thrice-damned double standard does though. This is art but that isn't. This is erotic but that is obscene.

The phrase I was looking for earlier was self-discipline. I hadn't eaten when I wrote that last post and the hot chocolate had not percolated through my synapses yet. I absolutely agree that it is not taught nearly as much as it should be today. Part of it frankly is because we teach our boys to be wimps. I'm not an advocate for Iron John, but sometimes I wonder what exactly that speech was in Secondhand Lions.

And yes, we teach our girls to take strength by pretending to be what men should be instead of the True Ladies that they can and should be.

We teach our children to reach for the stars but we don't teach them the discipline they need.

And yes, I know the childless man should not be lecturing anyone on childrearing. But Earth and Sky, it's my biggest frustration! To see all these marvelous young minds, but less than one in twenty-five has been trained to use their birthright. Half of them can't see anything beyond their own desire. Another quarter don't want to.

It's not that the moral standards have degraded. Character comes from overcoming obstacles. Too many today don't want that. The character is still there.

And truthfully, in some ways our "public morality" is better than it was. No more child labor for one. Women not being subservient to their fathers and husbands for another. If we stopped shielding people from their mistakes, character would come back.

NeoNotes are the selected comments that I made on other boards, in email, or in response to articles where I could not respond directly.

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