Everyone is abuzz over this news about the FBI expanding its porn-fighting, based on Congressional mandate and increased direction from Attorney General Alberto Gonzalez and FBI Director Robert Mueller. This is what they’re looking for:
Applicants for the porn squad should therefore have a stomach for the kind of material that tends to be most offensive to local juries. Community standards — along with a prurient purpose and absence of artistic merit — define criminal obscenity under current Supreme Court doctrine.
Ignore for the moment the government’s obvious lack of priorities when this is an issue while we’re trying to protect our country from terrorism. I still don’t understand why the federal government is enforcing “community” standards. Aren’t South Beach and Iowa City two distinct communities? Should the federal government be involved in that? I’m sure, like all federal government activities, there’s a logical explanation for why this is pushed to the federal government instead of local governments, but I don’t know what it is. I don’t know if I want to know, either, because it’ll probably make my head hurt. I’d rather drink a Slurpee® really fast.
(More thoughts in this earlier post.)