Does Removing Tragic Content Diminish The Public’s Desire To Stop Tragedies?

from the challenging-policy-decisions dept

We’ve written a couple times about Andy Parker, whose story is truly tragic. His daughter, a local TV news reporter, was murdered on air by a former colleague, in the middle of a live news broadcast. Truly horrific stuff. Parker has now spent years trying to remove the video of his daughter’s murder from social media. We first wrote about him in response to a very weird 60 Minutes episode, in which they used Parker’s story as an example of how social media websites like YouTube were unwilling to take down damaging content… even though the very same report admitted that YouTube not only has taken down that video repeatedly, but that it now prioritizes reports about that video and certain other content to remove as quickly as possible.

We also had another, more recent, story about how some very sketchy lawyers had effectively misled Parker into believing that if he created NFTs out of the shooting video, that would somehow get companies to be more willing to remove it from their platform faster (which is just nonsense). Indeed, given that he does not hold the copyright on that video, it is possible that creating the NFTs potentially would land him in some copyright difficulties with the actual copyright holder, who seemed initially willing to bend over backwards to help Parker, but was (completely reasonably) unwilling to assign the copyright to him.

I thought of this story recently, when listening to a fascinating discussion on a recent On The Media episode, talking with journalism professor Susie Linfield, over whether or not we’d be more likely to see action on gun control if the media actually showed the victims of mass shootings. Linfield also wrote a NY Times op-ed to this effect. She notes that this is certainly not an easy question — and it’s entirely understandable why people like Parker want those images and videos to disappear. Indeed, my gut reaction is that I’d almost certainly feel the same way if a loved one were such a victim. But, there are arguments going the other direction as well, including that by hiding this kind of content, it more or less sweeps some of the underlying problems and horrors under the rug, and allows society to pretend nothing is wrong, or that nothing should be done.

Photographic images can bring us close to the experience of suffering — and, in particular, to the physical torment that violence creates — in ways that words do not. What does the destruction of a human being, of a human body — frail and vulnerable (all human bodies are frail and vulnerable) — look like? What can we know of another’s suffering? Is such knowledge forbidden — or, alternately, necessary? And if we obtain it, what then?

These are questions that are being raised in the wake of last week’s mass shooting of 19 children and two adults in Uvalde, Texas, which has plunged much of the country into an abyss of sorrow, rage and despair. On social media and in the press, some, including the former homeland security chief Jeh Johnson, have suggested that photographs of the slaughtered children, whose faces and bodies were apparently mutilated beyond recognition, be released to the public in hopes of garnering support for gun control legislation.

Of course, as Linfield makes clear, there are no easy answers here on either side of the debate. There are a few examples of photographic evidence giving “history a nudge,” but there are also examples of how being exposed to such imagery — especially around someone you knew — is traumatizing as well. And, also, the impact of these images may not be what anyone expects… or wants.

There are many examples of photographs that gave history a nudge — sometimes even a vigorous one. Think of the My Lai massacre photographs, of the Abu Ghraib torture photos taken by American troops and of Darnella Frazier’s phone video of George Floyd’s murder. But just as the Till photograph didn’t end Jim Crow, the My Lai images didn’t end the Vietnam War (nor did press reports of the atrocity), the Abu Ghraib photographs didn’t end the Iraq war (or even lead to high-level prosecutions), and the Floyd video didn’t end police brutality. These photographs did support, encourage and strengthen public perceptions, political movements and public debates that were already in play. But none resulted in the kinds of immediate change that their supporters hoped for. When it comes to images, there are few Damascene moments, which is why most photojournalists are modest, if not pessimistic, about the influence of their work.

And viewers who look to photographs to effect political change should be careful what they wish for: Formulating political decisions on the basis of images can be treacherous. Photographs of skeletal Somalis dying of hunger — those by James Nachtwey are particularly brutal — were one of the key inspirations for the U.S.-United Nations intervention in Somalia in late 1992; less than one year later, Paul Watson’s horrific photograph of a gleeful crowd dragging an American soldier’s naked corpse contributed to our hasty retreat. (The Somali debacle was a major reason for the Clinton administration’s refusal to respond to the Rwandan genocide the following year.)

Still, it is a reason to think more deeply about this beyond assuming that the “obvious” right answer is to pull down such gruesome content. Linfield argues that, at the very least, perhaps a middle ground is that politicians debating gun control should see the images, if not the public:

Despite the very real dangers of exploitation and misuse that disclosure of the Uvalde photographs would pose, I myself would like politicians to view them: to look — really look — at the shattered face of what was previously a child and to then contemplate the bewildered terror of her last moments on earth. But that would not mean that the jig is up. People, not photographs, create political change, which is slow, difficult and unpredictable. Don’t ask images to think, or to act, for you.

Of course, this isn’t necessarily a new debate. For years, we’ve talked about how YouTube was pressured to take down “terrorist” content, and the result was YouTube shuttering the account of human rights groups documenting war crimes.

It’s not easy to know where or how to draw these kinds of lines. If the content leads to real change, maybe that’s useful, but it can also cause real harm. At the same time, there are arguments for having it available to researchers and archivists, rather than hiding it from history as well.

Again, I don’t have a good answer to this, other than to note that it’s a lot more complicated than people often make it out to be. Many people insist that there’s an obvious answer here — and often that “obvious” answer is that the content must be taken down. But, as Linfield’s discussion makes clear, it’s not that simple at all.

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Comments on “Does Removing Tragic Content Diminish The Public’s Desire To Stop Tragedies?”

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66 Comments
AricTheRed says:

There could un-intended consequences...

What if?
I could imagine news orgs, perhaps because of an activist intent to promote a gun control narrative, publishing these news worthy images resulting in a large constitutional debate, where the publishing of these images was rightly shown to be First Amendment protected activity.

That could produce legal decisions that would directly oppose the intent of their publication as the Second Amendment, just as the First, covers constitutionally protected activity, activity that could end up receiving the same judicial protections as the First.

I could imagine an argument that the publication of the images causes harm, just as the illegal use of an otherwise legal object (firearms) can cause harm, however specifically enumerated Constitutional rights deserve the highest level of judicial protection and laws that infringe on either might start to all be held to the legal analysis of Strict Scrutiny as opposed to Intermediate Scrutiny. This would likely lead to numerous legal precedents at all levels that would specifically negate the activist position for publication of said images in the first place.

I say publish at your own peril news orgs, then we’ll see who wins & who loses. The results will certainly be interesting & likely not be what one might expect.

(Parent of a dead kid writing here, so think before you respond as free speech is not without consequences, which all of us here should be familiar with)

christenson says:

Re: Needs clarity

Rather than vague threats, how about you walk through your imagined scenarios?

We already have a few first-amendment treading laws on the books: kiddie porn, probably something about false advertising, and copyright/trademark.

Here, we are thinking about pictures of violence…with supremely context-dependent effects and huge amounts of moral ambiguity. No law can have a sufficiently sharp demarcation, when smart people are themselves weighing the moral pros and cons. Just remember that the line between moral and not, or legal and not, is quite blurry.

AricTheRed says:

Re: Re: An Imagined Scenario

Not quite sure what you are indicating by “vague threats”, but here is an example for you and everyone else.

  1. News outlet publishes graphic images of shooting victims age 6-12 from any school shooting.
  2. Uber conservative state makes it illegal to publish said images because of the harm it may cause those that view the images, including their family, friends & loved ones. 3. Uber Conservative state get sued by FIRE, EFF, ACLU, et. al.
  3. Case goes through the legal system
  4. Upon appeal to SCOTUS Strict Scrutiny is determined to be the standard of legal analysis on specifically enumerated constitutional rights in the 1A case of dead kids, even though actual harm could be demonstrated.
  5. This case is then potentially precedential for other cases of specifically enumerated rights, even though there is the potential for harm, although most of that harm is tied to actual criminal activity, like oh, I don’t know, MURDER. and the gun control laws are then declared unconstitutional when Strict Scrutiny is applied to their analysis.
  6. Celebrate that your 2A rights as an American Citizen have been restored in the more populous states.

I suspect that when the NY Rifle & Pistol Opinion V. Bruen is released, possibly as early as next Tuesday, many people are not going to be happy with it regardless of which direction & to what level the decision is made.

As an example the implications of American Hospital Association v. Becerra and how that decision may be applied to how the ATF can try and ban a shoelace for being a machinegun, or a chore boy pot scrubber can be a sound suppressor and has to be registered.

Finally, I agree with you that there is a difference between what is right & what is legal. Those differences are not always the clear bright lines we might want them to be, like Content Moderation decisions.

  • BTW, I think vague threats doesn’t mean what you think it means, unless you thought there was a wood-chipper in your future or something like that?
Naughty Autie says:

Re: Re: Re:

As an example the implications of American Hospital Association v. Becerra and how that decision may be applied to how the ATF can try and ban a shoelace for being a machinegun, or a chore boy pot scrubber can be a sound suppressor and has to be registered.

The cited case bears zero relation to the potential effects you give as examples, and thus has equally as much relevance. Try again.

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Naughty Autie says:

Re: Re: Re:3

From your last post I can see you don’t comprehend what you read, or at least do not pay attention. Actually, ignorance is more likely the cause. After all, you didn’t link to the Wikipedia article regarding the cited case, knowing full well that it had nothing whatsoever to do with gun control, but just not giving a shit. Either that, or you’re the one lacking reading comprehension, and that’s why you never bothered to link to the article in question. TBH, I don’t know which is worse.

David Chipman, ATF Director Nominee Emeritus says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Glad I'm not the ATF Director now!

I think AricTheDumb was talking aboot this sort ideotic thing this one “Armed Scholar” on youtoobe is squacking aboot, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1HsBY0Ppe3g

Very Special Agent Richard Beazit & the rest of the dog killers will be visiting him eventually.

Naughty Autie says:

Re: Re: Re:3

Wow, an actual link this time! 👏 👏 👏
One problem; the case discussed in the video involved an actual firearm and not benign objects taken to be firearms or firearm-related objects by an over-reaching governmental department. Nice try, though. Just one last word of advice, Aric; when sockpuppeting, change your tactics to make it less obvious.

DBA Phillip Cross says:

Re: Re: Re:

Some AC troll mentioned Kim Phuc, aka “Napalm Girl.” Her commentary is thus:

It’s easier to hide from the realities of war if we don’t see the consequences. I cannot speak for the families of Uvalde, TX, but I think that showing the world what the aftermath of a gun rampage truly looks like can deliver the awful reality. We must face this violence head-on, and the first step is to look at it.”

In the case of manufactured terrorism, Techdirt’s willful harboring of GCHQ, One World Order, CFR et al. trolls, one must certainly call into question the “learned helplessness” theory, and how it impacts people like Kim Phuc, a true victim of these psychological operations (PSYOP’s) by Forever War, Inc. and its AC operators.

One could say that Kim Phuc was the original Stockholm Syndrome mouthpiece, via torture/ learned helplessness/adoption of the torturers narrative.

Naughty Autie says:

Re: Re:

We already have a few first-amendment treading laws on the books: kiddie porn…

Actually, that’s a prohibition of conduct, not speech. According to the relevant statutes, child pornography consists of “any visual depiction of sexually explicit conduct involving a minor (someone under 18 years of age).  Visual depictions include photographs, videos, digital or computer generated images indistinguishable from an actual minor, and images created, adapted, or modified, but appear to depict an identifiable, actual minor.”
Basically, child porn is banned due to the harm it does to children, and realistic fake images are banned to prevent the passing off of real images as realistic fakes. There is nothing in the law to prevent the proliferation of sexual cartoons featuring minors, so the First Amendment hasn’t been trodden on at all by legislation banning the production and distribution of child porn. However, I am curious as to why you would make such a claim.

btr1701 (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:

What exactly counts as a “realistic fake image of a minor”, anyway?

If a 19-year-old girl (legal adult) who looks young for her age dresses up as a schoolgirl, puts her hair in pigtails and sucks on a lollipop, is that a realistic fake image of a minor?

And for computer-generated people, how does the government determine how old a person that doesn’t exist is? The defendant can claim the digital avatar is a depiction of someone 18 years old. How does the government prove it’s really a representation of a 16-year-old person?

DBA Phillip Cross says:

Re: Re: Re:

So, in your definition, Kim Phuc is a porn star. STFU about “the harm it does to children.” No child ever ded from a blowjob, TBH. But here’s Kim Phuc talking about how napalm affected her life, and then, it’s evident how the MIC used her as a mouthpiece for Hegelian imperatives:

It’s easier to hide from the realities of war if we don’t see the consequences. I cannot speak for the families of Uvalde, TX, but I think that showing the world what the aftermath of a gun rampage truly looks like can deliver the awful reality. We must face this violence head-on, and the first step is to look at it.”

The Uvalde shooter, like ALL of them, is a product of internet PSYOPs. Undeniable, and clearly influenced by PSYOPerators.

Like Kim Phuc, a victim of those who operate from a position of “sky to earth” messaging. Phuc is 100% a US Air Force victim, and 100% a US Air Force controlled operative, and as such, her “now” testimony is paid for, and debate-ably accurate, or informed.

Victims of MKULTRA seldom are aware of their full range of options with which to discuss the atrocities heaped upon them, by US-FVEYs agents.

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Koby (profile) says:

Manufacturing Sympathy

over whether or not we’d be more likely to see action on gun control if the media actually showed the victims of mass shootings.

It depends on what images are shown. If a video of a bunch of 6 year olds in a classroom is shown, you might get your legislation. If you show the store security footage of the other 98% of situations –the Chicago 20 year olds dealing drugs and flashing gang signs minutes before a vehicle from a rival gang approaches and opens fire, along with text of their criminal history on screen, then you’ll actually increase support for the second amendment.

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That One Guy (profile) says:

'Who cares about them, the victims are the ones that matter.'

I’m iffy on showing such images on general tv as as impactful as they would likely be they would also almost certainly seriously harm the mental state of a bunch of people, kids and adults alike who just happened to be unlucky on their timing watching tv.

On the other hand if the press does want to try to do something but isn’t in the mood to go that far I would very much support the widespread adoption of the Some Asshole Initiative, where any mass-shooter/murderer is merely referred to as ‘Some Asshole’ and all the focus is on the community, how they are doing and ways people can help. It wouldn’t stop all shootings, hell it might not stop any, but if the press stopped putting any murderer’s name in the spotlights it would at least ensure that the right people get the attention and that killing a bunch of people wouldn’t be a guaranteed way to get the sort of attention you usually have to be rich and/or famous to attain.

Naughty Autie says:

Re:

On the other hand, if the press does want to try to do something but isn’t in the mood to go that far, I would very much support the widespread adoption of the Some Asshole Initiative…

Given the lack of a watershed in the States, that would become the Some [bleeep] Initiative. 😜

Lostinlodos (profile) says:

Re: Re:

Threading is broken… not sure what the OP says.

The premise of “do something” has become a calling card of certain groups. Be it the Proud Boys or BLM… and some journalists fall into it.

The thing is there are very few who have any legal requirements to do something. Front liners, in or off duty. Drs, nurses, police, firefighters, empty. It extends some what to military. Though actual rules vary.

There are those who want to do something. Such as activists and protesters. I agree sometimes you need to push, or break, laws to force change. But I do not agree one is free from consequences in doing so, no matter how just the action.

Some people should not get involved. Such as the media. There is no law that guarantees media access to anything.

the latter two groups tend to be at odds with the law. Even if I support your motivation, you suffer consequences when you get involved.
A cameraman being shot with beanbag rounds or gases in a riot zone… is easily seen as excessive force. Yes. But I have no real pity for it happening either.
There is a line that, once crossed, takes you over from bystander to criminal.

The media is supposed to be honest static observer. As soon as they become involved they go from news, to mondo film.

Uriel-238 (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: The BLM "doing something"

Is there a specific incident to which you are referring, in which a known BLM member or someone in BLM colors carried out violent acts?

My understanding of their strategy, based on Dr. King’s method is to keep protests peaceful, so as not to give viewers excuses that they had it coming. Generally it’s law enforcement that’s glad to bring anti-riot ordnance to BLM meetings and start the mayhem. And the point is to get it captured on camera and post it on the internet.

And then it’s easy to contrast how police treat BLM protestors compared to how they treat Proud Boys or Stop the Steal protestors, or Anti-mask protestors, or Anti-vax protestors.

Lostinlodos (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:2

While, as far as I’m aware anti-vax and anti-mask protestors don’t resort to murder and arson. Feel free to post specifics from reputable organisations such as NYT, ChiST or WSJ. Etc. None of that WaPo crap.

Specific! https://nypost.com/2020/07/22/portland-protesters-barricade-courthouse-with-federal-officers-inside/

Comes to mind. But I watched as looters robed the Mag Mile blind. And set fire throughout cook county.
Seattle, Madison, etc. how about the violent GF protest at the capital, that Even CNN tries to ignore.

Again, I’m out part of any group and don’t know who is who.
I don’t really care either. When you, the individual, break the law you break the law. Period.
Your reasons may be just. And I’m the first to say sometimes martyrs are needed to change shite laws.
But you must be arrested and go to trial.

I actually mean it when I say all lives matter. From the moment they cut the cord.and you breath on your own to the da you die of natural causes, and any shortening is worth sorrow.
I don’t take sides. I recognise reality.
As STS pointed out the vast majority of my comments show m political beliefs. I’m not part of the American party system. I could care less what some paid mouth says. My opinions are my own based on internet research not involving google search.

I say this: the same consequences of speech exist in action. You do the actions, you suffer the consequences.
Sometimes I agree with the reasoning of criminality, sometimes I don’t.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:3

But I watched as looters robed the Mag Mile blind and set fire throughout Cook County.

The vast majority of which looters were white. Your point?

I actually mean it when I say all lives matter.

Except the lives of 13-year-old children forced to carry their rapist’s baby to term, apparently.

Lostinlodos (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:4

The vast majority of which looters were white. Your point?

Actually, no. But I didn’t mention race there. Did I? You did. You’re the one making it about race. I don’t care what race a person is. Means nothing to me.
My point?
“ When you, the individual, break the law you break the law. Period.”

Except the lives of 13-year-old children forced to carry their rapist’s baby to term, apparently.

Huh? Have a good time finding anywhere where I actually support banning abortion. Anywhere! Link please! Good luck!

Maybe do a bit of research before making a fool out of yourself?

Uriel-238 (profile) says:

Gore propaganda is already abused

My first exposure to gore propaganda was in 11th grade in 1981. A Pro-life activist came to my class for a day and passed around pictures of aborted fetuses.

I was appropriately repulsed, and would later learn in college logic and critical thinking that visceral arguments such (such as medical procedures being disgusting) don’t really address their propriety in society if they serve actual functions (which abortions do in developed society).

Later on, I’d learn that the remains of abortions don’t look even remotely human anymore, and the anti-abortion crowd has to obtain pictures of natural (uninduced) miscarriages in order to get their baby-zombie pictures. I felt lied to, and since anti-abortion activism has been consistent with the lying (about the risks of abortion, about when the unborn achieve certain stages of development, etc.) it’s become a grudge thing. I don’t like these people even before I have an opinion about abortion.

I’m a bit bitter.

But then, I thought, could we use gore propaganda to protest against war? To me, this is a higher priority than guns in the US because of the numbers. During the apex (nadir?) of the CIA Drone Strike program in Afghanistan, it was averaging about 50K civilian deaths per year. We called them militants. We called the dead kids fun sized terrorists. And really it may have helped if Americans had to see first hand the damage wrought by our elected representatives and their ongoing policies. As a note, the disposition matrix and the program in Pakistan is still active.

And while we’re doing dead school kids, how about dead kids that had the misfortune of being in the trajectory of law-enforcement officer-discharged bullets? I look forward to gun control efforts that slow those down.

Okay, I’m a lot bitter.

But as with all things in the US, I think it comes down to who has a fat enough war-chest with which to secure gorey pictures that drive a given cause, verses those who use their war-chests to chill that campaign back to silence. Since few rich people care about dead Pakistani children or dead non-white child victims of officer-involved homicide. Rich people in the US as of 2022 like to see miscarriage gore on protest signs, but not children of color incinerated by Hellfire, or shot dead by AR-15 (or police handgun).

They might be useful in a meme format, since memes are pretty visceral anyway, and viral content seems to slip past regulations so long as it isn’t CSAM. But I’ve notice the people who share gore are the ones less disturbed by it anyway.

Holy fuck, I am so bitter.

Naughty Autie says:

Re:

Later on, I’d learn that the remains of abortions don’t look even remotely human anymore, and the anti-abortion crowd has to obtain pictures of natural (uninduced) miscarriages in order to get their baby-zombie pictures.

Not to call you a liar about what you were shown and how those images were obtained, but wouldn’t a foetus expelled in a medical abortion look identical to one expelled in a miscarriage?

Uriel-238 (profile) says:

Re: Re: Abortion Remains

I heard it, myself, from a doctor who provided abortions. She pointed out late-term procedures don’t yield an intact fetus, and most abortions are before the embryo looks remotely like an infant.

There are articles on line that discuss the gore pics used to promote anti-abortion sentiments, such as this one.

Naughty Autie says:

Re: Re: Re:

She pointed out late-term procedures don’t yield an intact fetus…

My point was that medical abortions mimic natural abortions (miscarriages) or, if the pregnancy is at a late enough stage, pre-term birth. Therefore, a medical abortion carried out at 25 weeks would result in the expulsion of a foetus that looks like an extremely premature baby.

Uriel-238 (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:2 "Medical abortions mimic natural abortions"

First off, let me disclaim: I Am Not A Medical Professional (IANAMP), I am only a layperson who has consulted with abortion providers and doctors who have provided abortions. If you are looking for more information about abortion procedures, I am not your guy, and I’d advise you talk with an abortion provider.

The standard Dilate And Evacuate procedure does not extract the pregnancy material all at once rather it does so piecemeal.

The human body is really not thrilled about stretching the cervix open to accommodate an IUD insertion device — about the diameter of a pencil — let alone an embryo with a wider radius than that.

As for natural miscarriage, they are less consistent, with some requiring labor or partial labor while others don’t. Some evacuate the entire embryo at once while others eject the material in chunks. Miscarriage without intervention can take weeks and are a risk to the patient’s life and heath. As such some of the abortions provided in the United States are as an alternative to miscarriage without intervention, (that is, the fetus is already established as non-viable), given the miscarriage process is expected to be a lot of suffering, and risks shock and infection.

This is to say the scenarios covered by the term miscarriage are very broad, and to say medical abortions mimic natural abortions can be very misleading. In the case of the D&E procedure, it mimics a narrow subset of abortions in which the material is ejected piecemeal and not at all looking like a fetus. When comparing late-term miscarriages to late-term abortions, a D&E is invariably quicker, safer and with less suffering.

In those cases, a medical abortion does not simply mimic a natural abortion.

It’s possible that you know of a different late-term medical abortion procedure that does yield an unspoiled intact-if-dead fetus, but no procedure I’m aware of seeks to keep the material intact, since seeking to do so would be at the cost of causing undo injury and suffering to the patient.

Lostinlodos (profile) says:

Re:

People of colour Incinerated? In the US? You’ll need proof to let that stand. In hellfire?
But………

When it’s honest, gore has a place in education.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User:Lostinlodos

I’d prefer pro-life over death… sure. But I’m also pro choice.. I’d rather the government made an incentive to those who are not as happy to carry to term.

Let’s be realistic. I’m slightly younger than you. But gore films like midnight rider and the clif. The jaunt. Racers?
I’ve mentioned before how I thought education should go back to brutal uncensored reality.

I watched silent screen in 6th grade. I walked out. Not for my own issues but to comfort two girls (GIRLS) who became Ill and walked out. One of which was already on the pill in 6th grade and an active partner with me.
Sorry Reps. Contraceptives date to the 70s!
[side note] she’s happily married to her JR High sweetheart girlfriend.. Good for her.

I have issues with late term abortion. Sure. That film engrained itself into my mind. Yes.
But being in my age group, many more gore/mondo/abruption films have very positive results.
I wish more kids watch those driver’s Ed gore flicks! And gun safety. And aids/hiv.

Because just like I have now issues with mandating ID possession, when it comes to sex…
I’ll fuck any willing person on earth. But papers please.
I don’t like rubbers makes me limpy. Tested in the last 48hrs and were good for whatever. Despite my lack of drive for DIH penetration… I’m happy to lick suck and swallow. So papers mean facts mean safety

Sry, drunk. I’m not sure where I’m going with this other than truth has has a place in the classroom.
and censored and edited self serving crap should never enter such

DBA Phillip Cross says:

Re: Re: Re:

Did you see yesterdays news on Kim Phuc?

To say “Napalm Girl”, and “naked girl running” are incredibly demeaning ways to describe a woman whose name is easily found online, and whose story, told by a photojournalist, changed our world.

She just got her final burn treatment, 50 years after the US MIC dropped chemical weapons on her, and her village.

50 years….

Her story has long been at the center of free speech debates about imagery, child pornography, and nudity as a tool whereby human beings can create messages with which to speak to other human beings, and Nick Ut who took that photograph struggled to accept that photographing one persons unimaginable pain was necessary to change the discourse about Forever War.

As for black people incinerated, it’s almost beyond words to describe the horrors that the Protestants and their KKK heaped on black people, including incineration. Too many lynchings to discuss–and for those sick fucks who did those things, their crowning moment was always emasculating their victims–literally cutting the penis off of these men that they brutally murdered, and in some cases, keeping it as a trophy.

No one–and I mean no one should ever be laughing about that.

Journalist Walter White investigates lynchings, and the more that we read these stories, the more horrific the crimes appear, as they should.

And in that light, I am with LILodos–brutal reality is what kids should see, but with discretion–starting in 8th grade when they are emotionally capable, as opposed to kindergarten and drag queen story hour, or other ADL sponsored curriculum.

A game changer in education was when schools started sponsoring appearances by people like Mahalia Jackson to perform for kids in schools–but what has steadily happened since, is a corruption of that ethos, and not-even-close to civil rights discourse. It’s merely transparent Hegelian Dialectic, and child-poisoning.

Like the story of Michael Jackson, the story of a useful idiot, lynched in modern high tech ways, long after the victim has become a pawn in an international bankster war on civility.

DBA Phillip Cross says:

Re: Re:

Your candid honesty here is very welcoming. It’s lacking in most of the discourse, because rationalists refuse to accept anecdote as evidence–despite the overwhelming preponderance of anecdotes that, once united, form evidence if properly described.

Your tale of sixth grade exploits is amazing to see written into this semi-public space–and it takes the power away from those who would otherwise manipulate that story into some gendered, political and cautionary tale about predators! rather than an honest description of common human activity.

Extra points on the drunken posting! I am sure several here are guilty of that, but few will admit it.

Cheers!

Lostinlodos (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:

I’ve always found those that provide the truth nurture. Those that hid it control.
I wasn’t a predator, I was a tool. Being weak and small and emotional, bullied endlessly in school, I was the little puppy everyone knew would be huggable and want nothing more than to sit and listen, out side of school.
That came with what some call benefits. At times. But it wasn’t the drive or goal.

But some of those films made sense. Watching brutal bloody car crashes makes you think. What is a car but a 60mph missile when not properly controlled.

Maybe watching a man blow his face off by not clearing a rifle for cleaning can save a few lives.

Understanding abortion may save a few babies. Preferring birth doesn’t mean I’d ban abortion. It means that I’m open to finding ways to convince people to carry to term. Free health care and universal untaxed-base social income are actually good ideas in that.

And hey! Maybe if kids in shop class watched some of the OSHA videos adults need to watch in training… les kids and teens will be pulling nails out of their thigh because shooting a nail gun at each other is “fun”.

Want saw safety? Show the lumber yard video where the man cuts his arm off and his idiot rescuer falls on the blade and gets cut in two.

The midnight car films definitely reduce drunk driving. What’s said is I lost four friends in high school. To a drunk moron who blew a red light and pliers into them. Where was HIS video history?

We need to get back to honest education. Not protecting sensitive young emotions.
Life is hard. Life is brutal. Life is deadly. Stop pretending.

DBA Phillip Cross says:

Re: Re: Re:2

OSHA video’s lol. That’s only for the union guys and state employees–scabs and immigrants get the “learning-on-the-job-that-you-should-have-bought-your-own-workers-comp-too-late treatment.

Re:

those that provide the truth nurture. Those that hide it control(FTFY)

Definitely hits the spot–we see that on this forum too, and you know who I am talking about.

In school, I was treated to the all-kids-must-watch-it movie with the horrific images of a young girl who was kidnapped and raped, left lying in a sewer pipe, with her pants down. I still see that image in my head to this day–and frankly, I have no idea why I had to see that. As a child, the entire message–stranger danger–never sunk in, and instead, I had all these ideas about girls, and rape.

Not once did it occur to me that this could happen to me–that the message was that such things happen to girls,not boys–and the message streams of that era were all the same–that only girls are under threats.

Needless to say, it was poor preparation for real dangers, the kind I experienced in the insane US-FEY’s cultures of gendered violence. The John Gacy’s are real, the police connected drug dealers are real–the cops who sell guns on the side, and the silent predation of law enforcement cults and gangs which span the entirety of US shores. All of these prey upon boys from very early ages, but no film about that.

We need to get back to honest education

We need to get back to math, science, language and literature, lest the “evil Chinese” get the dropp on the entire world. We need to get the poison pen writer’s and especially get the ADL out of school curriculum. They are every bit as toxic as any other religious entity in schools. The backlash of the recent defeat of Roe, the lunacy of having six Catholics on the court–there should be laws against groups who do such things, not laws in favor of them. But this is the subtext battle inside the American school. That’s not happening in other countries.

Most famously, these shooters are all manipulated online, and offline before they ever go ballistic–and the government and media refuse to discuss these online PSYOP’s that radicalize them. After the shootings, they do everything in their power to hide the guys internet trail–and hide the provocateurs who assist in radicalizing these guys. That’s what kids should be taught about.

From Columbine, to Jared Loughner, who shot the darling of gun control, Gabby Giffords, to every shooter since, they were “on the radar” in some way or other–and clearly, some agency or organization is involved in radicalizing these boys. Loughner, for example, was an avid reader, and avid critic of the fact that the ADL sponsored curriculum is toxic. He was engaged in the brainwashing that he was actively experiencing via public schools, a real no-no in the “freedum luvin'” USA is thinking too hard about the propaganda one is being fed-Loughner notoriously read Mein Kamp, right alongside the Communist Manifesto, and refused to pick a side.

The pattern repeats in these “radicalization’s” and yet no news covers that–and in fact assists in the coverup after these events. And these shooting’s all seem to “just happen” in areas of the country drenched in far right religious narratives.But instead of talking about that, we talk about the junk science of “fame seeking mass shooters,” and never investigate who these deep state narrative creators are.

In fact, there is even a major PR campaign designed BY the FBI to cover-up these shooters online narratives, in the form of Do Not Name Them, and No Notoriety, designed to occult the facts after these events. Pure deep state, Flavian witchcraft.

Teach the kids that–the images themselves might help, but teaching the occulted deep state role in these events might be more valuable.

If kids should be afraid of anything, it is the power of narrative–and how that power is hidden, active at all times, and provoking these events, from America’s first mass shooter, Howard Unruh, to the latest mass shooter, in tomorrows news. It’s the Freemasons in policing and in the communities where they manufacture these events, silly boys.

Raziel says:

Photographic images can bring us close to the experience of suffering — and, in particular, to the physical torment that violence creates — in ways that words do not.

If you have to see images of children murdered in school shootings in order to understand the pain such deaths can cause to their friends and loved ones, that says more about your level of empathy than it does about the morality of publishing such images.

sumgai (profile) says:

Re: Re: re:

…make them grow something resembling a heart

More likely what they need to grow is a pair of functional, and properly functioning, balls.

Look, the only way we’re ever gonna get the gun-loving legislators off the dime is to have Anonymous dox their hidden bank accounts, where we learn for once and for all just how much the NRA and others are fattening their wallets. Purchased votes might be not exactly illegal (otherwise lobbyists wouldn’t exist at all), but I’d lay long odds that if their constituents knew just how much they’re personally profiting from being elected while their kids are being murdered, there’d probably be a new crop of legislators getting elected, come next cycle.

sumgai (profile) says:

Re: re:

,,, that says more about your level of empathy

Looked at any Republicans lately??? I say unto you, they are, as a group and as individuals, wholly without empathy in any measurable degree when it comes to mass murders, regardless of the victims’s ages.

Wake up, buddy, the coffee is starting to smell pretty damn strong.

sumgai (profile) says:

And I say...

… fuck the feelz!!!!!

The only harm suffered by anyone who views such images as those under discussion is to the feelings of those with personal attachments to the victims in the photos. In my extremely not so humble opinion, that DOES NOT trump the need for well-informed public discussion. Period.

The matters of life-and-death as juxtaposed with gun control are extremely emotional, and are our most prime example where facts are optional at best. I say, if you can’t present a case without giving as much factual evidence as needed, then you’re wasting everyone’s time, including your own.

And here I refer to parents of murdered school kids pleading with legislators to ban guns, yet they don’t want images of the results of un-banned guns to be shown. They’re pissing in the wind, because they want someone else to believe their feelz, without providing even an approximation of why they feel as they do. They might as well be flashing swords with Zorro, for all the good they’re not getting done.

Aric, if you want to imagine something, try this one on for size:

Picture Alex Jones standing next to a diorama of dead school children, in coffins and at memorials, where he’s claiming that they’re all actors, and the images aren’t real. He claims that they’re photoshopped, and that he has the guy who did it.

Now, how long do you suppose he’d be able to keep that up if the real images were published? And where we, the public, learn that the alleged photoshopper was paid by Jones to make that statement? Your estimate on that time frame would be appreciated, I’m sure you undestand.

sumgai (profile) says:

Re: Re: re:

And that lawsuit would be civil, because it would be based on feelz, not on some actual criminal conduct. Which would probably be good in the long run, because it would bring the judiciary into the fray just that much sooner. If that were to happen all over the country, with varying opinions from the disparate venues, then “things will only get more interesting”, to paraphrase that old Chinese curse.

Quick reminder: The internet NEVER forgets. By design, it simply can’t forget, no matter who passes what laws. I say, thank you to the original designers for the ensurance that History will be portrayed more accurately for our descendents.

Raziel says:

Re: Re: Re:

Picture Alex Jones standing next to a diorama of dead school children, in coffins and at memorials, where he’s claiming that they’re all actors, and the images aren’t real. He claims that they’re photoshopped, and that he has the guy who did it.

And if he continuously engages in such behavior regarding the same individuals, then the behavior goes over the line into harassment, which is a criminal offense, unless I’m very much mistaken.

DBA Phillip Cross says:

Some AC troll up there mentioned Kim Phuc, aka “Napalm Girl.” Her commentary is thus:

It’s easier to hide from the realities of war if we don’t see the consequences. I cannot speak for the families of Uvalde, TX, but I think that showing the world what the aftermath of a gun rampage truly looks like can deliver the awful reality. We must face this violence head-on, and the first step is to look at it.”

In the case of manufactured terrorism, Techdirt’s willful harboring of GCHQ, et al. trolls, one must certainly call into question the “learned helplessness” theory, and how it impacts people like Kim Phuc, a true victim of these psychological operations (PSYOP’s) by Forever War, Inc. and its AC operators.

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