Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Get 'em while you can

Up until about noon yesterday, I had absolutely no idea what I was going to blog about. I'd even searched online for silly little blog questionnaires. That's how desperate I was.

Then I opened the newspaper and there it was. My blog topic. I just hope the Playfriends don't un-invite me from the group and that I don't totally offend any of our readers, though I kinda doubt it'll bother the romance-loving crowd.

This was yesterday's headline:

State Set to Enforce Ban on Sex Toys

I'll give you some quick background. In 1998 state legislators passed a new anti-obscenity law designed to quash the proliferation of nude dancing clubs. The phrasing of this new law also bans sex toys. A local woman who owns a shop called "Pleasures" has fought this law since it was passed and got an injunction to keep it from being enforced while she challenged it. She's not only fought it locally, she's been on national television.

Now the Supreme Court has refused to hear her appeal and within days all sex toys could disappear from stores across the state. You'll be forced to buy online unless you meet the exemption for devices for "bona fide medical, scientific, educational, legislative, judicial or law enforcement purposes." Uhm... legislative and judicial purposes? Law enforcement? Are they going to vibrate you into compliance with the law? And just who decides when a vibrator is a bona fide medical necessity?

The shop owner plans to file a new challenge because public obscenity laws should not affect anything meant for private use. Even the local district attorney has said he's not going to send out officers to drum up business because it's a pretty low priority. "We've got real crimes," he said. You think???

For the record, possession of such a device isn't illegal. It's just the sale of them that violates the law and could result in up to a year in jail and up to a $10K fine.

The law prohibits the distribution or production of "any device designed or marketed as useful primarily for the stimulation of human genital organs." If they ban the sale of sex toys, what's next? Romance novels?

Think about it.

P.S. If I'm mostly AWOL for the next two days, it's because I'll be out of town keeping the grandbaby while her day care is closed for Shmini Atzeret and Simchat Torah. Our family isn't Jewish but this is one of the best day care centers in town, and I think it's marvelous for her and the rest of the family to have such a wonderful exposure to another religion and culture. Wish me mazel tov!


Nini said...

Mazel tov!

As for the toys...shame on them! I mean, who really cares? And here's where i might get bashed. IF a woman decides to dance nude in a club, that's her perogative. She's getting paid for it. She chose it. If she was forced into doing it, that's different. But...

What does dancing nude in a club have to do with personally owning toys? Why not just close the clubs?

You enjoy your grandbaby....i'm going to try to enjoy my middle school students. Jewish or not, there's no holiday for me and 1st marking period ends on Friday. Can we say grades?

Nini :)

Jen said...

This is just stupid. There's a whole plethora of things wrong in our world -- they slap us in the face every time we turn on the t.v., hook up to the Internet, or open a newspaper. Sex toys aren't one of them.

And I won't even get started on the hypocrisy...oy, this irritates me.

Have a great time with your granddaughter. I'm sure there's some mutual adoration going on there. :)

Rhonda Nelson said...

What Jen said. Stoopid, stoopid, stoopid. :-)

Have a great time with the grandbaby!

Problem Child said...

Because, you know, all the other problems have been fixed...

We can sell guns in this state but not vibrators? Huh? I don't think anyone's been vibrated to death or knocked over a liquor store with a vibrator.


God forbid we should sell something that's only used for pleasure...

Smarty Pants said...

This is just idiotic. I mean, yeah, they shouldn't be on the shelf at the Walmart, but in specialty shops where you have to be 18...who's business is that? I guess since we live in a state that still has a law that says sex should only be between a married man and woman, missionary style, for the sole purpose of procreation... this goes along with that.

Guess online retailers will get a big boost.

Instigator said...

Ah, but if you read the law correctly even online retailers are subject to fines if they're discovered to have sold to an Alabama resident. Now how law enforcement agencies are going to figure that out (and why they would want to) is beyond me but...

I think the entire thing is very stupid. But when you get down to the legal issues involved it's more than stupid, it's scary. The legal system is trying to legislate what we do and don't do in the privacy of our homes. That's invasion of privacy. Something the law is supposed to protect not diminish.


Anonymous said...

Some conservative apologists are quick to argue that the "values voter" crowd does not have a mental illness related to human sexuality. Yet how else can one defined the equation of "human genital stimulation" with "obscenity?"

It is fair enough to demand sexuality be kept private, but to demand it also be kept paraphernalia free?!? I need to dig up a Bible and check Ecclesiastes again, because I'm pretty sure that whole "a time to every purpose under heaven" stuff didn't specify an exceptions for masturbation and kinky acts of love.

Lynn Raye Harris said...

Well, for me, that goes right up there with this near fanatical desire to end liquor sales in certain places. I chose to live where I did for many reasons, but believe me when I say that the idea I couldn't get a bottle of wine on Sunday figured high on my list of places I did NOT want to live. If I'm having a football party on Sunday and run out of beer, I don't want to have to drive to the next county to get it. And the places where they sell no alcohol at all, ever -- well, that just amazes me.

As for the sex toys, hubby and I drove past a store the other day that said "Baseball Cards and Guns". It was also a shooting range. I thought that was a strange combination of stuff. :)

So, basically, kids can learn to shoot as soon as they can walk, but good Lord don't let them see a vibrator. I've not regretted moving to Alabama for a second, but stuff like this makes me cringe. It's backwards and provincial. JMO.

Angel said...

I just don't understand how they can make it illegal to purchase something that isn't against the law to make or own. Still haven't quite figured that out, but then I'm not a lawyer.

I agree with everyone else. And Lynn, it wasn't that long ago that you couldn't buy beer here on Sundays, you had to cross the state line into Tennessee. :)


Kathy said...

I'm concerned about the lengths the law will go to invade people's privacy. Are they going to monitor purchases online?

Let's face it. It takes 2 years for Forensics to build a case because the system is so swamped. There are other more important things our citizens are dealing with every day. Why doesn't the law turn its focus on that?


Kathy said...

Forgive me. Before I step off my soapbox this morning, I want to complain about a certain individual who just got off for killing a teenage girl (former cheerleader) in a traffic accident. The accident was horrid and could only have happened if he was going over the speed limit and ran a red light. And yet, he's free as a bird while this girl's family suffers another devastating blow. Case closed. I don't think so.

Nini said... of my favorite words - just rolls off the tongue...and yeah - there's a plethora of other crimes out there that need attention first...


I don't think anyone's been vibrated to death or knocked over a liquor store with a vibrator.

I couldn't stop laughing!!! I had this mental image of a man holding a "toy", vibrating, at a bank, saying "Hand over the money or i'll vibrate you to death!"

Thanx for the laugh!

Nini :)

catslady said...

Oh what Nini said roflmao.

I hate censorship of any kind. It's pitiful people in powerful positions trying to instill their hypocracy on others.

It's banned book week so I've been on my rant for a while! Everyone read a banned book - I just finished one!

BethRe said...

I don't like the idea of a state banning anything.

Natasha said...

You're right. Next thing you know, they'll ban romances for being "stimulating!" It's truly scary.