Tanaqui tweaver at imbolc.ucc.ie
Thu Jul 6 22:57:57 EDT 2000


+ I'd still say that material that presents suffering as desirable can act 
+ to normalise it in some (?already twisted) people's minds. 

I can't help thinking of _Cryptonomicon_ again - the section when Van Eck
phreaking reveals that the guy on the computer next door is coming up with
a theory on people's brains acquiring irreversible kinks early in life.

I still don't think a sane person could ever argue "The book made me do it"
or even "The styling of the pornography I read made me feel it was OK to
rape this woman" - if you can deduce stuff from a text that may or may not
be there you should certainly be able to notice when someone makes it bloody
clear in person that you are overstepping social bounds.

This Reid chap who offed the woman who was nice to him, justifying it as some
sort of lovers' suicide pact (of course, he barely broke the skin of his
wrist and she was entirely unaware of their "relationship") is clearly a 
sociopath (degree in health psychology notwithstanding) - and has been judged 
guilty this week.

And then all the serious S&M "tops" I have ever met have been the most polite
and socially-able of people. They're breaking the Spanner Decision laws... 
they're the social outsiders, the sex-criminals, but they're the good guys!

Human interactions are fraught with this sort of paradox. All hail DWJ for
not labelling good and bad, but making some of it evident and some of it
thorny (_Black Maria_ is pretty damn ambiguous, and is it fair for those who
are ecologically sound and wear their clothes to bits to suffer on the road
to Babylon?)... and pointing out that just about everyone is fallible.

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