Hayden's Ferry Review


Makes HBO look pretty tame, in fact

The Supreme Court recently ruled to give the FCC a free hand in policing words on television and radio broadcasts. You can find the article here. Music, video games, television, and film continue to be legislated, regulated and rated heavily with regard to their content. But when you pick up a book there is no regulatory oversight on its what it contains. There is no rating stamp on the cover warning you of this or that. It's an open secret that books in America run free. It's a powerful thing to experience and interact with this freedom. It leaves the reader with the feeling of the power of their own ideas. It’s no secret that totalitarian regimes go after writers as a way to keep their populaces from ruining their carefully stacked houses of cards and Ozian curtains.

It’s a little amusing to see the wheezing over "fleeting expletives" that aren't even as bad as any six pages of Henry Miller or William Vollman. Of course the caveat to this is that sometimes municipalities and school districts just out-and-out ban works that they are afraid of or think cause controversy.

But books and magazines, especially the smaller independent ones, are where real freedom and an exchange of ideas can be found. Do yourself a favor when you read this week: smile a secret smile and think "You can't do that on television."