Porn free; feminists rally around the First Amendment.

Author:Gillespie, Nick
Position:Trends
 
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BECAUSE ANTI-PORNOGRAPHY STATutes championed by feminists such as Catharine MacKinnon and Andrea Dworkin have enjoyed a high profile during the last few years, the media often characterize feminists in toto as favoring the censorship of offensive materials. But the National Coalition Against Censorship's recent campaign to change anti-porn language in the Violence Against Women Act (S. 11/H.R. 1133) indicates, in fact, that women's groups are becoming more vocal in their condemnations of censorship.

The NCAC is made up of 43 different artistic, cultural, political, and educational groups that share a disdain for censorship. While not specifically a feminist organization, the coalition moved against the proposed legislation on feminist grounds. Last fall, the NCAC's Group on Women, Censorship, and "Pornography" sent letters to more than 15 members of the House, urging them to excise the bill's section providing training for judges and court personnel "on current information on the impact of pornography on crimes against women, or data on other activities that tend to degrade women." A number of feminist groups, such as Feminists For Free Expression and the East End Gay Organization for Human Rights, as well as six Rutgers University law professors, joined the NCAC effort.

"The implying of a causal link between exposure to sexually explicit material and behavior will not help women," says NCAC Executive Director...

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