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Monday, October 03, 2005

A Severed Head on a Spike(d)

Shame on you if this salacious entry title pulled you in looking for gruesome images. I'm just supplying the link to my latest Spiked commentary, penned after more legal nonsense unfolding around the question of digital phone content. But feel free to read on anyway.


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6:08 am  
Blogger Simon said...

I read your article on spiked, and while I disagree with Younis' conviction for committing a breach of the peace, I also disagree with you.

You say, "Younis acquired the video from the internet; he did not behead anyone himself in order to obtain it." The argument doesn't work for people who are found with a hard drive full of kiddie-porn does it? It's not enough to say "Mr. X didn't rape any children himself; he just liked watching other people do it."

Younis should have been prosecuted for the same reason that they prosecute people who download child pornography, because the existence of an audience hungry for such images makes it more likely that people will provide them.

It is undeniable that the content of the video is criminal; its possession should be criminalized to diminish the demand. If only one jurisdiction does this effect will be minimal, but it would be a good start, and perhaps other would follow. There would be little point in killing unimportant individuals if there weren't a global audience waiting to see it. The acts are more for the armchair supporters of the insurgency than directed at achieving any tactical objective.

For you to claim some sort of parity between the fictional "snuff" of video nasties and the real-life horror of the beheading videos is post-modern nonsense. I watched "The Devil's Rejects" last night. It was a despicably violent movie, and I thoroughly enjoyed it, but the gulf between watching an actor cowering in fear before he is "slaughtered" and some hapless abductee is absolute. The actor picks up a cheque and goes home. The abductee does not.

11:55 am  
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7:38 pm  

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