South Park. Season Eight. Twelfth Episode.
"People, don't applaud me. I'm a dirty whore. Being spoiled and stupid and whorish is supposed to be a bad thing, remember? Parents, if you don't teach your children that people like Paris Hilton are supposed to be despised, where are they gonna learn it? You have to be the the ones to make sure your daughters aren't looking up to the wrong people." -Mr. Slave, Spoiled Whore Playset
Message sent WITHOUT auditioning 700 little girls to twerk in a movie OR perform scenes of a sexual nature to be viewed by the masses. Brilliant! But maybe that's just me.
(For those of you out of the loop, the context is the movie "Cuties". And apparently being against the film makes you a right wing fascist, but I digress).
What is wrong about having a film where eleven year old girls watch scenes of sexual behaviors and then imitate them, and then go on to learn that this "empowering*" act is harmful to them?
Oh, you know, the fact that these children then perform the actions they've just watched while a camera zooms in on their body parts.
Child Sexual Abuse Material (CSAM) or virtual child pornography refers to materials that do not portray a real child, but which graphically depict sexualized children, male or female, and it is illegal in Canada and the US, but does not fall directly under pornography laws.
Abusers were getting out of criminal charges because penetration was not occurring. CSAM was brought into the legal proceedings to protect children from being abused. And it means that even if an adult is used as a stand in (which according to sources is not the case in the film Cuties), or the child is photographed/filmed in a sexual way, and that material is then proliferated, it is considered child abuse. Even if the parents, the director, and the producers all gained/gave consent....it is legally child abuse. Even if the "message" was to raise awareness of a situation that is happening, it is against the law and considered child abuse.
And that means anyone who has footage of the 600+ girls "auditioning" for roles in this film, and of the film itself, is in possession of abuse material.
Even if you disagree with me (and I can think of only one reason why), the producers of this movie and the parents are complicit in breaking the law; a law designated to protect children from exploitation. And, depending on how far lawmakers wish to pursue this, sending out advertisements for auditioning for this movie might also fall into luring laws and voyeurism.
I haven't seen the film.
And I won't. I don't need to see a murder to know that murder is wrong. I don't need to see a child being abused to know child abuse is wrong.
The scenes that I unfortunately saw presented by Shoe0nhead (deeply edited and thankfully obscured) and a few other youtubers was more than enough for me to be against it even with its explained context. Just ten seconds of what was shown should be enough to have it considered child abuse (and its more than 10 seconds). There isn't enough context in the world to make me or anyone else need to see this movie in its entirety to know that it is wrong. The only way I would ever conceive having to watch material like this is as a juror, and we needed to know just how many graves we needed to dig.
I am not traditionally a book burner. The only book I have ever wanted removed from a library was Firefly by Piers Anthony. I was seventeen and I was horrified at reading an alleged fantasy book written by a renowned childrens author that graphically described sex with a five year old, sex with a decapitated chicken, and more. I felt then as I do now that there was no reason for it to be on the shelf where children could access it, and there was no justification for it to be on a shelf since even Anthony could only justify its existence in relation to Lolita
For me, Cuties falls into this. There is no real reason for it to exist. And by all standards it should not exist. Assuming that each of the children that auditioned for this movie had two parents, over a thousand adults were okay with what was going to happen. Not one videographer, editor, producer, writer, lawyer, or even the director said "We might be exploiting children in the process of showing the dangers of child exploitation."
Ban it. Culture will not suffer for its loss.
*The director, who I had assumed from a place of bigotry must have been a white male until I learned that it was a female, considered twerking as sexually liberating and empowering...going against her alleged moral ground that this very behavior was bad for young impressionable girls.
Why "Failed Daily"?
Because I fail to update daily.