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I'm a Dork 4 Jay Brannan to see his links click here:

"The experience of the United States is a happy disproof of the error so long rooted in the unenlightened minds of well-meaning Christians, as well as in the corrupt hearts of persecuting usurpers, that without a legal incorporation of religious and civil polity, neither could be supported."

Fight the H8 in Your State"A mutual independence is found most friendly to practical religion, to social harmony, and to political prosperity."

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19 January 2008

SHORTBUS creates local controversy at Public Library

John Cameron Mitchell's film SHORTBUS which introduced the world to the music and acting of Jay Brannan has come under the guise of certain puritan idealist locally. According to a WANE TV report, local activist Mike Hinkle is on a mission of ignorance and mortification, based on his perception of normal everyday American SEX! Yes you read correctly, a movie that discusses that horrible topic about what we do to each other willingly, yet refuse to talk about; while we wonder why our kids our having kids and worse yet getting incurable diseases, because no one is willing to have an honest conversation about relationships, let alone sex! SHORTBUS and the actors who starred in it had that as its primary goal a discussion and presentation about RELATIONSHIPS AND SEX!!

Now apparently he has rented SHORTBUS along with several other movies he deems unworthy of public comment and review to be taken to the Associated Churches of Fort Wayne. To start a censorship battle with the Library Board there? Who knows.

"Hinkle is now (supposedly) filing a formal complaint with the library, to have the movie banned from the library shelves. Hinkle says a library committee reviews complaints about material, and then decides whether or not to take action." A move Justin Roebuck, another long time patron of the library, agrees with sort of. "That gentleman has every right to file a complaint, but I think it's up to individual discretion to decide what is, and is not pornography." Justin further defended the film, "It is about sex in modern day America. I think it was an important film, actually."

F6 wants to take a moment, roll over and give Justin four paws in the air, for standing up for truth and freedom of speech in the midst of this obvious act of bigoted close minded grandstanding on the part of Mike Hinkle.

Library Director Jeff Krull reassured citizens that when patrons check out those kinds of magazines, they have to leave behind their driver's license for collateral. When it comes to checking out movies, Krull says the staff strictly enforces the G-, PG-, and R-rating system. A further clarification of the system states that unrated movies which include certain foreign language films and television shows also are unrated and therefore have restricted access.

In a letter dated the eleventh of January 2008, Jeff explains the Resource Development Policy to a concerned female patron, "materials in the collection present all points of view on the current and historical issues and inclusive portrayals of human experience in a wide variety of media and styles." Jeff goes on in the letter to express one of the most Libertarian stances I have ever heard in my lifetime: "It is not the ACPL policy not to place any... restrictions on borrowers in making ... selections. We rely on parents (as the primary educators of their children) to provide guidance and direction to their children on appropriate reading choices. We believe it is the right and responsibility of parents, and only parents, to restrict their own children's access to library materials they believe are unsuitable."

The letter was made available by Dan Turkette of Fort Wayne News here in (pdf) his coverage of this story. Which brings me to my last notation: I am actually the one who made the formal request for this movie to be purchased, so I could review it on here as part of F6's service to the community and broaden everyone's queer horizons a little more each day, since they couldn't retrieve it from another library. Six month turn around is actually fast work on their part which results in a excellent government efficiency rating for processing a casual request! Thank you to WANE TV, Dan, and Mike for bringing this to my attention so promptly.

Now all I have to do is pray that Mike or the Associated Churches decide to return the DVD to the Library rather than burning it in effigy. To refuse to allow the rest of the citizenry make an open and honest decision for themselves about this offering to the public conversations surrounding RELATIONSHIPS and SEXUALITY would be the greatest offense to the Constitution hands down! If it is not returned, I would hope that the ACPL would restrict if not ban this zealot from checking out further material at a minimum and preferably they would sue his ass in federal court for theft or destruction of public property and violation of our first amendment rights to preview information that is already in the public sphere.

[Editor's Note: Text in orange was
highlighted after posting, reflecting
where it was
quoted without direct cite by The News Sentinel.]

[F6 UPDATED:] In his Opening Arguments, Leo Morris, reminds us that in fact the correct legal question regarding Community Standards is whether SHORTBUS is obscene not pornographic and that review falls under the jurisdiction of the County Prosecutor who will probably not touch this issue with a twenty foot pole and defer to the standing policy of the Library's review process for guidance.

[THIS IS A POLITICAL RANT:] Although with that information now out on the blogosphere, we are only three steps away from a concerned member of the Associated Churches or the Library Board to resign from a statewide watchdog organization which then turns around and files a formal complaint even after the local government authority clears the movie from any violation of community standards or obscenity, to get the ball rolling yet again. I wonder who the Special Prosecutor will be for this one. Can you imagine the headline "City of Churches sues Independent Film".

It is We The People not I The Citizen at the beginning of the Constitution!

Come on people this whole fiasco is a flagrant violation of the intent behind our first amendment rights and my liberty to decide what is appropriate for myself and my children to read or view. This isn't about porn it is about an honest visual conversation that apparently some in the community don't want to have undertaken, and that my friends, is puritanical censorship not to mention minority rules trumping majority rights.


Robert Fuller said...

Short Bus is a Creation of art. Im glad our library has this movie. Parents dont talk to kids about sex. This movie is a good reflection of life. I guess Mike Hinkle has nothing better to do except complain about one of the best libraries. I have ever been to. Next he will want them to get rid of all pornographic art sorry there goes the rennaisance. Then he might decide book burning is a good idea. Isnt there bigger problems to worry about Mr. Hinkle

Phil Marx said...

Is the video accessible to children? If not, then Mike Hinkle is trying to tell adults how to think about sexuality. That would make Mr. Hinkle a moron.

If the Associated Churches of Fort Wayne picks this up, I think it would be appropriate to protest outside of any church that supported this nonsense.

give medals 4 killing men but 4 loving men they wish you were dead?

give medals 4 killing men but 4 loving men they wish you were dead?
thanks to the sacrifice of many the scourge of Dont Ask Dont Tell in the land of the free and home of the brave will be gone by the end of June!!!!