Freedom to Read


I think not
#1
Freedom to read can never be taken for granted. Even in Canada, a free country by world standards, books and magazines are banned at the border. Books are removed from the shelves in Canadian libraries, schools and bookstores every day. Free speech on the Internet is under attack. Few of these stories make headlines, but they affect the right of Canadians to decide for themselves what they choose to read.

www.freedomtoread.ca/default.asp (external - login to view)
 
missile
#2
Most already are aware of this. It wasn't that long ago that Mein Kampf was removed from our major booksellers shelves. It is an evil book,to be sure,but historically important to those who study the Nazi phenomenon. The case of The little Sisters bookstore and their decade long battle to bring books into Canada has been well documented,too.
 
Curiosity
#3
The evil here is....

....another person deciding upon our most personal wishes. It is the basis of an emasculated society. I hope there is activity being
set up against this kind of censorship.

I used to read an active forum where on occasion a Chinese student would find his way to the messages and write what he could telling us how his life was ... and then he would disappear for weeks.... and return happily telling us he had found another "internet cafe" and he could post until it was found and closed down.

He presented a portrait I will never forget - the theft of a personal kind which usurps all decency. The systematic teaching without question of the young..... and the ultimate censorship of thought for the people. It is like being fed one food without choice.
 
I think not
#4
Quote: Originally Posted by missile

Most already are aware of this. It wasn't that long ago that Mein Kampf was removed from our major booksellers shelves. It is an evil book,to be sure,but historically important to those who study the Nazi phenomenon. The case of The little Sisters bookstore and their decade long battle to bring books into Canada has been well documented,too.

Mein Kampf ("My Struggle") is a book that is part autobiography and full of political and racial ideas. He (Hitler) has no proof to back up his beliefs because that's all they are, just beliefs not actual facts. I only decided to read the book a couple of years ago because of all the fanfare on how evil it was. The "evilness" of this book pales in comparison to other books I have read, nevertheless, it is not up to the government to dictate what people can or cannot read. Check censorship at the door, or in your case, the border.
 
Jay
#5
Canadian's can't be trusted to pick and choose what read'n they do. It just isn't the liberal way....
 
I think not
#6
I don't know when this censorship started, but it should end. This is Canada in the 21st century, not Nazi Germany in the 30's.
 
Jay
#7
Oh come on....Canada is full of national socialists....
 
TenPenny
#8
This scary censorship of Mein Kampf that you speak of was simply the decision by the owner of a chain of bookstores to not sell that book. The book is available elsewhere.

I don't know why you people run around screaming censorship when you don't know the facts.
 
I think not
#9
Perhaps you should click on the link and learn the facts.
 
FiveParadox
#10
Even if the Government were to be censoring literature, such would not be done without a valid cause. For example, it could be argued that Mein Kampf was hate propaganda literature in that case, then, it is not our right to read the book that is in question, but rather the right of a person to write such a book.

The tenant of free speech in Canada is not "free" so much as it is "responsible."

Personally, I prefer it that way.
 
I think not
#11
"Responsible" reading FiveParadox? And who will decide what is responsible? Someone sitting behind a desk justifying his salary?
 
Doryman
#12
The day I am not allowed to go to a local bookstore; read Mein Kampf, the Communist Manifesto, the Koran and Laveys Satanic Bible in one sitting is the day that I am not free. Censorship of intellectual material ( no matter how biased and possibly insane it may be) is just Mind Control Lite. It has no place in a free society.

However, the owners of the store have freedoms to choose what to sell,as we have the freedom to choose what to buy and read. Personal censorship is much different that enforced Governmental censorship.
 
Jay
#13
Quote: Originally Posted by I think not

"Responsible" reading FiveParadox? And who will decide what is responsible? Someone sitting behind a desk justifying his salary?

A socialist will decide. They no best and the people know nothing about what is good for them. When are you going to realize these fundamental things, ITN?
 
I think not
#14
It strikes me as odd, actually hypocritical, that you pass SSM legislation and yet ban books with lesbian, gay content at the border. This is the "judgement" pencil pushers have.
 
FiveParadox
#15
I think not, the particular practice to which you refer is no longer exercised in Canada.
 
Jersay
#16
Quote:

Oh come on....Canada is full of national socialists....

If you are trying to compare the nazi's to socialists you are dead wrong there. They were actually conservative or republican in nature, not socialist.
 
I think not
#17
Quote: Originally Posted by FiveParadox

I think not, the particular practice to which you refer is no longer exercised in Canada.

Which practice are you referring to Five?
 
FiveParadox
#18
Sorry, my post was somewhat ambiguous.

I was referring to the practice of "blocking" literature that would concern homosexuality (at least in British Columbia; perhaps other Provinces have chosen another stance on this issue, but given the behaviour of rulings from their respective Supreme and Superior Courts, I doubt it).
 
sanch
#19
Here is an interesting case that seems very current. bell hooks also wrote an essay about having her books confiscated at Canada customs.

Cherry Seized in Canada
(9.02)

I am the author of 'Cherry,' an erotic novel about dyke life, set in present-day London, England. It's the first book in a new imprint of erotic fiction for lesbians and bisexual women. It was published in summer 2002 and is now being distributed around the world. Except Canada.

Canada Customs have repeatedly seized copies of my novel en route to small, independent queer bookshops, reviewers and distribution agents in their country because they believe the book is obscene. They are particularly upset about a reference to a consensual sex scene between two adult women that details "the insertion of a hand or a foot into a ******l orifice," that is, fisting.

Sometimes sex books can be released from 'detention' by Canada Customs if they are deemed by them to have 'Artistic Merit.' And despite its sexual content, reviewers and those who have read 'Cherry' have described it as having significant artistic merit, including characterisation, poetic use of language, plot development, etc. In short, it's not your run-of-the-mill porno (even if it was, that still wouldn't justify Canada Customs' heavy-handed censorship).

You might be surprised to find that a lot of literary fiction depicting peculiar sex acts and/or violence is allowed into Canada, including novels such as 'American Psycho' and 'Porno,' by Irvine Welsh. Moreover, books that have the protection of large corporate publishers and their lawyers also manage to sneak in. Canada Customs just seems to have a problem with the smaller scale stuff that deals with queer sex, and because independent gay and lesbian bookshops sell a lot of sex-related matter, they get picked on the most. For example, for a long time every shipment of books Little Sister's bookshop in Vancouver ordered was scrutinised by the authorities and material seized - including safe sex information. The shop is now involved in a long-running legal battle to overturn Canada Customs' censorship policies.

homepage.ntlworld.com/charlot...nadacensor.htm (external - login to view)

This is a sample of books that have been seized by Canada Customs.

Adams, Carol: The Sexual Politics of Meat: a feminist-vegetarian critical theory
Altman, Dennis: Homosexual Oppression and Liberation
Allison, Dorothy: Trash
Bataille, George: Blue of Noon and Story of the Eye
Bierce, Ambrose: The Devil's Advocate: An Ambrose Bierce Reader
Bram, Christopher: Surprising Myself
Bright, Susie: Susie Bright's Sexual Reality and Herotica
Burroughs, William: The Naked Lunch
Califia, ed: The Lesbian S/M Safety Manual.
Carter, ed.: Outrage: Australian Gay and Lesbian short story anthology
Cooper, ed.: Discontents: New Queer Writing (Amethyst Press)
Delany, Samuel R: The Madman
Marguerite Duras: The Man Sitting in the Corridor
Dworkin, Andrea: Woman Hating and Pornography: Men Possessing Women
Fleming, Mickey: About Courage
Genet, Jean: Querelle and Prisoner of Love
Hardy, Jan (ed.): Wanting Women: an anthology of erotic lesbian poetry and Sister/Stranger: lesbians loving across the lines
Hedgepeth, Evonne and Helmich, Joan: Teaching about Sexuality and HIV
Highsmith, Patricia: The Price of Salt
Hollinghurst, Alan: The Swimmingpool Library
hooks, bell: Black Looks: race and representation
Irving, John: The Hotel New Hampshire
Leavitt, David: A Place I've Never Been
Leyland, Winston (ed.): Gay Roots: 20 Years of the Gay Sunshine Interviews Also Gay Roots II.
Linden, Ruth: Against Sadomasochism
McBride, Will and Fleishhauer-Hardt, Helga: Show Me! (released on appeal)
Mitchell, Mark, ed.:The Penguin Book of International Gay Writing
Mohr, Richard: Gay Ideas: outing and other controversies
National Lesbian and Gay Survey: Proust, Cole Porter, Michelangelo, Marc Almond and Me: writings by gay men on their lives and lifestyles
Odets, Walt: In the Shadow of the Epidemic (Duke University Press)
Penelope, Julia and Wolfe, Susan (ed.): Lesbian Culture: an anthology,
Phelan, Shane: Identity Politics
Reage, Pauline: The Story of O
Rechy, John: City of Night
Rule, Jane: Desert of the Heart
Sade, the Marquis de: The 120 Days of Sodom
Sedgwick, Eve Kosofsky: Tendencies; Fat Art, Thin Art (Duke University Press) and other titles
Selby, Hubert Jr.: Last Exit to Brooklyn
Sherman, Suzanne, ed.: Lesbian and Gay Marriage
Steinbeck, John: The Way
Smith, David Emerson: Queer Poet Lives
Stern, Phyllis Noerager, ed.: Lesbian Health: what are the issues?
Stoller, Robert: Port: Myths for the Twentieth Century
Swartzlander, Susan and Mumford, Marilyn, eds.: That Great Sanity: Critical Essays on May Sarton (University of Michigan Press)
Tom of Finland: Nasty Nature Trail, Tom of Finland Exhibition 1974-95 and Retrospectives #1
Tory, Frank (ed.) Panthology I and Panthology II (burned by Customs)
Walker, Mitch: Men Loving Men
Oscar Wilde: Teleny
Willis, Danielle: Dogs in Lingerie
Wojnarowicz: Memories That Smell Like Gasoline

Caught Looking: Feminism, Pornography and Censorship
The Lesbian and Gay Studies Reader
Nudist Magazines of the '50s and '60s
Discontent: New Queer Writers
Stonewall Riots
International Fiction #22: Homosexuality and Pornography
Fiction International #22
The Kama Sutra
Betty Page Reading Cards
Caught Looking: Feminists, Pornography and Censorship
Tin Tin
Asterix
Unity: A Celebration of Gay Games IV and Stonewall.
Wimmin's Comix #7, 10
Weenie Toons
Hothead Paisan, various issues.
The Advocate
Piercing Fans International Quarterly
More titles from Leif Harmsen's Web Site.
 
I think not
#20
It was the Supreme Court that issued the ban in BC on homosexual content. And it continues today across Canada, do a search on Richard Meyer's "Outlaw Representation: Censorship and Homosexuality in Twentieth-Century American Art" and see if it is banned or not.

By the way, it isn't a provincial matter, it is a federal issue.
 
Jay
#21
Quote: Originally Posted by Jersay

Quote:

Oh come on....Canada is full of national socialists....

If you are trying to compare the nazi's to socialists you are dead wrong there. They were actually conservative or republican in nature, not socialist.

Yes I know, all workers parties are conservative and replublican...I know about all this already.
 
I think not
#22
Quote: Originally Posted by sanch

Asterix



That must be a misprint, Asterix is a comic book based on the Roman Empire. Nothing sexual about it. I started reading it when I was 12.
 
sanch
#23
www.efc.ca/pages/chronicle/customs.html (external - login to view)

No it seems to have made many of the lists and there are many on the internet
 
I think not
#24
Quote: Originally Posted by sanch

www.efc.ca/pages/chronicle/customs.html (external - login to view)

No it seems to have made many of the lists and there are many on the internet

Well that is just crazy, someone has to tell me why they would sieze this at the border:

gb.asterix.com/index.html (external - login to view)
 
I think not
#25
Quote: Originally Posted by Jersay

Quote:

Oh come on....Canada is full of national socialists....

If you are trying to compare the nazi's to socialists you are dead wrong there. They were actually conservative or republican in nature, not socialist.

Yeah, how about just saying they were fascists or inhuman or do you expect me to believe everything people print:

Nazis Were Left-Wing Socialists (external - login to view)
 
JomZ
#26
Nazisim was unique that it took a lot of aspects of many spectrums and became extreme facism.

A one leader state, which controlled the economy and the media, but allowed private corporations to exist (Ironically the smirk-looking front end of the VW Bug was designed by Hitler himself).

Its unfortunate that this type of political spectrum will be forever hated due to the insane desires of the Reich to ethnically cleanse minorities in the population
 
MMMike
#27
Quote: Originally Posted by Jay

Canadian's can't be trusted to pick and choose what read'n they do. It just isn't the liberal way....

Next thing you know, they'll be reading books about popcorn or beer!!!
 
I think not
#28
Quote: Originally Posted by MMMike

Quote: Originally Posted by Jay

Canadian's can't be trusted to pick and choose what read'n they do. It just isn't the liberal way....

Next thing you know, they'll be reading books about popcorn or beer!!!

Crazy, what's next, Charlie Brown?
 
Cosmo
#29
Quote: Originally Posted by TenPenny

This scary censorship of Mein Kampf that you speak of was simply the decision by the owner of a chain of bookstores to not sell that book. The book is available elsewhere.

I don't know why you people run around screaming censorship when you don't know the facts.

Check the censorship link on the url, TenPenny. I've followed Little Sister's case closely over the years. The government has stooped to the ridiculous in this case ...in their rabid attempt to ban anything homoerotic, they ended up banning a book called "Hot Hot Hot" that was actually about cooking with Jalepeno peppers! They obviously are not even checking what they are banning. It's become a free for all. Little Sisters has put up the good fight for many years and I've been a supporter.

It is a big deal. And I do know the facts.

Mein Kampf has a very interesting history. To refresh my memory, I checked on it before posting any comments:
Quote:

After Hitler's rise to power, the book gained enormous popularity and virtually became the Bible of every Nazi. Every couple intending to get married was required to own a copy. Sales of Mein Kampf earned Hitler millions; however, many of those who purchased it barely read it, and many bought it simply to show their allegiance to Hitler, gain position in the NSDAP, or avoid the attentions of the Gestapo. By the end of the war, about 10 million copies of the book had been distributed in Germany.

Some historians have speculated that a wider reading prior to Hitler's rise to power (or at least prior to the outbreak of World War II) might have alerted the world to the dangers Hitler would pose to peace in Europe and to the Holocaust that he would pursue.

(Note: Bold is mine.)
Link (external - login to view)

The idea that people SHOULD read this type of book sits well with me. The more we know, the better. If people educated themselves beyond their own narrow views I believe history would be less likely to repeat. As for banning Mein Kampf, yes, it is available, but there is considerable controversy over it.

Canada is a free nation. That means we should have the right to read any damn thing we please ... with the exception of common sense topics like child pornography or snuff films. To set the boundaries right out at the very edge allows people to gain a full knowledge rather than treating them like dim-witted morons that require protection from themselves. I get so tired of the government legislating what is "good for me" that I could rip every hair out of my head. Censorship is right up there at the top of my "bitch list".
 
poligeek
#30
I have to say that I strongly support Canada banning books, furthermore I think that there should be much more publicity around which books are banned, maybe a column in the newspapers ever few weeks listing all the recent banned books....

Just think what it would do to get people away from the TV and back to reading
 

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