21 November 2010

"Crush Videos" -- Banned in the US...

The "Internet!" The mention of one word, "internet", can inspire such varied and passionate reactions in people. These reactions stream along a curve from the positive to the negative. The internet is a wonderful resource. Yet, it is also a place where there is much to be found that highlights the darkness and depravity that makes some of us tick. Crush videos are one of those things that hide out in the deepest and darkest recesses of our existence.

The US Senate voted unanimously to ban the creation, sale and distribution of crush videos. For some of you, this might be the first time you have ever heard of the term crush videos. You are also wondering "what the hell is he talking about?" A crush video, to all of you reading this who have lived very sheltered and protected lives, are sexual fetish films in which small animals are maimed and killed. It is probably worth noting that the law does not cover "cruelty" to small animals that fall victim to hunters or who might suffer in the care of veterinarians.

If you are anything like me, then you are having a hard time getting your head around the idea that there is anything sexual in the maiming and killing of small animals. Then again, I have always wondered what it is that makes a seemingly super-ordinary person a serial killer? For me, the what makes them "tick" aspect of it all.

I really do not have any problem with parliament getting involved in this way. I have absolutely no problem with crush videos being banned. I do not see the banning of these sorts of videos as an impingement on the freedom of speech of those who make them or those who want to watch them. I would reckon that in this day and age of modern technology there would have to be a way to satisfy this sexual fetish 'virtually'.

Yet, come to think of it, it would not take a whole lot to ban virtual sexual fetishes either. The law as it was passed seems to provide a free pass to virtual content as the wording goes something like this: "actual conduct in which one or more living animal is intentionally crushed, burned, drowned, suffocated, or impaled in a manner that would violate a criminal prohibition on cruelty to animals".

Digressing a little, has a crime been committed against a person, a child, in a virtual child porn, operation? I have been watching too much "Law & Order: SVU" of late.

Back on track, and back to the internet. The internet is a vast resource if you know how to look for certain things or if you are looking for specific content. To be honest, I have not ever looked for crush videos. To be equally honest, I have not studied sexual fetishes that closely to know that there was even a sexual fetish that involved cruelty to animals.

Nevertheless, the truth of the matter, these videos have traditionally been distributed for free utilising file-sharing peer-to-peer networks. The internet and ever-improving connection speeds have ensured that the ability to disseminate and distribute content has become much easier.

As context to why the US Senate had to pass a law on this sort of material arises from a US Supreme Court decision from this past April that declared an earlier 1999 law that criminalised videos that showed abuse and cruelty to animals to be unconstitutional. The 'unconstitutional-ness" of the 1999 law stems from the fact that SCOTUS held that the original law was too broad and therefore a violation of people's First Amendment rights to free speech.

Free speech vs. the right to life of some small defenseless creatures...hmmm, consider the animals for a moment and let's stop the crush!


H. Nizam said...

Hi Rob,

Crush video? Never heard of it an d after reading your post I understand a bit.
I wonder what they call a video showing the cutting of throat of alive cows and goats during last Idul Adha here.

Rob Baiton said...

@ Harry...

Interesting question. Although, I am pretty sure that Idul Adha and the sacrificing of cows and goats is not about sexual fetishes or some kind of sexual gratification.

muebles en huelva said...

In my view one and all must glance at this.