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Wednesday, May 7, 2008

A Queer Way to Support the Troops

posted by on May 7 at 10:05 AM

A congressman has introduced legislation that would ban the sale of Playboy, Hustler, Penthouse and other “men’s magazines” on U.S. military bases. Needless to say, a Republican is pushing this anti-troop measure.

U.S. Rep. Paul Broun, R-Ga., has introduced legislation that would close a loophole in the current law that allows the sale of some sexually explicit material on military bases by lowering the threshold required to deem material “sexually explicit.”

A Department of Defense committee that reviews materials sold on bases ruled last year that magazines such as Playboy and Penthouse are not pornographic. But Broun’s Military Honor and Decency Act includes language that could make those magazines eligible for the ban…. Some soldiers say magazines that could be banned are particularly important downrange.

Brown deployed to Afghanistan in 2002 and 2005 and is preparing to go to Iraq with the 12th Combat Aviation Brigade this summer. When he was in Afghanistan he was one of the first to pick up a new copy of Maxim or FHM when it came out, he said.

“It would suck if they ban it,” he said. “It’s bad enough we are down there to begin with. Taking that away would be like a knife in the chest. I’m not saying I’m depending on Maxim to keep me alive over there, but it helps.”

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a sure way to increase military votes for BHO in november.

Posted by max solomon | May 7, 2008 10:11 AM

Anti-troop, and anti-family. Some of these guys are trying to be faithful to their wives, fer fuck's sake.

Posted by violet_dagrinder | May 7, 2008 10:15 AM

They want to ban them because of the language? Well, God forbid that our soldiers should ever be exposed to the word "fuck."

Posted by Fifty-Two-Eighty | May 7, 2008 10:18 AM

I'm sure Rep. Brown just wants the men to focus their lustful urges on more appropriate subjects, such as local women.

Posted by Greg | May 7, 2008 10:18 AM

And yet rape of American female soldiers is frequent and almost never unpunished. Attack the symbol, never the truth.

Posted by Fnarf | May 7, 2008 10:18 AM

@5: You mean almost never punished, right?

Posted by Greg | May 7, 2008 10:21 AM

Seriously, has the GOP given up on being the military's party of choice? Are they nuts?

Posted by tsm | May 7, 2008 10:22 AM

Perhaps we should begin putting together care packages of porn. You know, for the troops.

Posted by Dead Reagan | May 7, 2008 10:23 AM

It's always nice to see a reaffirmation that the Republicans are the party that wants to keep government off our backs.

Posted by AMB | May 7, 2008 10:24 AM

i see the dip shit stakes for the dumbest congressman is open again. this piece of work ought to do wonders for the baptist from georgia. i just wonder if he has any facts to back up his assertion that any sexual assault in the military can be blamed on the sale of girlie mags in the p.x.

Posted by jim filyaw | May 7, 2008 10:33 AM

@6: yes, of course. Serves me right for turning my sentence inside out halfway through writing it. Almost never punished.

I'm sure that's a huge consolation to the women soldiers, to know that their rapists are still with the unit, but at least can't look at Maxim.

Posted by Fnarf | May 7, 2008 10:33 AM

A world where pornography is unavailable devolves into hellish chaos pretty damn quickly.

Posted by MBI | May 7, 2008 10:52 AM

This is reason number 456 why the South should be allowed to secede from the Union and take their crazy-ass representatives with them.

Posted by Fly-Over Illinois | May 7, 2008 10:53 AM

what about those men's exercise mags. i remember them being on sale in the class 6 store...and they seemed to be only kinda about 'workouts'

Posted by Jiberish | May 7, 2008 10:55 AM

i agree with fnarf's sentiment.

the "symbol" vs "real issue" is a difficult one, though. in many cases the symbol is important, and can be an effective tool in addressing the real issue. i think there is a third common option, which is the red herring. it often masquerades as a symbol or seems like actual issue, but is neither. the hummer is a symbol of the gas-guzzling vehicle problem. a red-herring might be the gas-tax "holiday".

it is of note, however, that people who don't like pornography think it is a corrupting influence, a potential gateway to worse behavior. they believe that there is a link between the two, arguing that if you decrease the porn, you decrease the potential for rape. i disagree, but that is where they are coming from.

i think this is more of a red-herring then a symbol, if anyone is attempting to link them at all. some of the stories of rape of americans in the middle-east by other americans is horrifying.

but as fnarf point, those who claim to care about "purity" -- or whatever virtue they are hoping to promote by eliminating the vice of pornography -- are really missing the point. how could anyone who cared about sexual virtue want to deal with the rape problems first and foremost?

Posted by infrequent | May 7, 2008 10:57 AM

@13 ... it's all a front. Southerners don't so much deny their humanity. They just don't do it in public, and don't want to get caught. As one of my buddies, who grew up in Pensicola, explained to me.

And yes I think it's asinine.

When a Baptist drinks, he drinks with his friends who arne't baptists. OR he drinks alone.

They all KNOW they are going to hell, but they would rather appear to be in good graces with the eyes of the community.

Posted by OR Matt | May 7, 2008 10:59 AM

To quote Jonny McGovern, "Ain't nothin' wrong with helpin' a buddy out". Now thanks to the Repubs, there's going to be a lot more of the buddy-system operating in the military ranks.

Posted by montex | May 7, 2008 11:12 AM

Ah, yet another politician that makes my state look fantastic. I'll say what I always say: we're not all like that.

Oh, and @13 - Your belief that everyone in the South is a redneck yahoo who can't wait to re-fight the Civil War shows is one of the reasons so many people down here hate you.

Posted by Georgia Guy | May 7, 2008 11:14 AM

This bill attempts to address the problems of hairy palms and blindness that are so common among military personnel in remote combat situations.

Posted by hairyson | May 7, 2008 11:27 AM

@18 ... I meet more people from the South who are frustrated with the moralistic politics than not. So WHY THE FUCK DO THEY KEEP ELECTING THESE ASS HOLES?

I remember Govern Roland (republican), thrown out on his ASS in CT when his wife tried to play the God card, claiming the media was giving them crap for "Being good Christian people" in the wake of a corruption scandle.

I just want a straight answer

(CT is surprisingly overwhelmingly Republican run locally)

Posted by OR Matt | May 7, 2008 11:29 AM

It seem like a long time since I've heard about porn being a political issue. Good.

Posted by PJ | May 7, 2008 11:55 AM

They're risking their lives, let them stroke it!

Posted by gillsans | May 7, 2008 12:02 PM


The problem is that people like Rep. Broun believe husbands wanking off to pictures of naked (or nearly naked) women is equivalent to adultry anyway, so your argument wouldn't really fly with that crowd - not that they'd be open to any other "rational" argument, either.

And the Congressman's "correlation" between the presence of skin mags and the prevalance of sexual assaults in the military is just ludicrous, not to mention not supported by any empirical evidence, SFAIA. In fact, common sense would seem to dictate just the opposite; by providing a "relief valve" that allows male troops to vent off some of their sexual frustrations, one would think it would also reduce the urge to take out those frustrations out on their fellow troops or on innocent civilians.

But again, common sense is not the sort of thing people like Broun are prone to in the first place.

Posted by COMTE | May 7, 2008 12:13 PM

@23: Plus, Rep. Broun no doubt already has the choicest stuff stashed away.

Posted by onewink3 | May 7, 2008 12:25 PM

@ 20 - I wish I knew why they do it. You just know the guy trying to pass this law has a gigantic porn stash at home (and judging from what some GOP guys have gotten busted for lately, it's probably a LOT more interesting than Playboy or Penthouse).

I think a good bit of it is a generational thing. Up until recently - thanks, Obama! - any time I went to vote I was the youngest person in the polling place by 30 years or so. And older people around here tend to elect "good, upstanding" politicians who will make things like they used to be. Which is a crock, because even back then people were complaining about how things weren't like they used to be.

Posted by Georgia Guy | May 7, 2008 12:29 PM

Does anyone remember the bad old days when porn was almost universally unavailable except in surreptitiously memographed copies? And then Denmark got brave and took the distribution restrictions off pornographic magazines with photographs and lo! and behold! their sexual assault rate dropped dramatically. This Broun should be old enough to remember that. Perhaps they didn't teach history in his school?

Posted by Calpete | May 7, 2008 12:33 PM

@25. The way things used to be is such a crock. I find myself be all nastalgic for the way things used to be. Before American Idol, when Rage against the machine was still touring. When there was money for my college education, and jobs would be inevitably thrown in my direction and I wouldn't be spending so much time rotting my brains on the internet ...

Oh wait, now I'm really really confused and stuck in self doubt now ...

Posted by OR Matt | May 7, 2008 2:12 PM

I just love the idea that porn is dirty and debased, but WAR IS JUST PEACHY.

Whaaaat the fuuuuuuuuuuck is wroooooooong with these people?

Posted by violet_dagrinder | May 7, 2008 3:22 PM

I was in Georgia last year, traveling from Atlanta to a huge USAF base farther south. After seeing a billboard that said "Thank God for Rush Limbaugh.", I started seeing a whole bunch of billboards for the strip club(s) located around the USAF base. The most memorable one had pictures of Asian, Hispanic & Black women, claiming to show visitors the "All American Experience"! And I thought the hypocrisy of the Seattle morals crowd was way out there! Those GA folks take the cake! We don't have any billboard by the highway, relatively speaking, and we sure don't have any true "strip clubs". (booze & touching) Oh, and that same town had several churches that were the size of Key Arena.

Good chance that Rep. Broun never served, and only hears from the hypocrites in his district. Maybe he can team up with McPain and change the GI Bill into a permanent tour of duty, with bennies never being paid.

Posted by Sir Vic | May 7, 2008 4:39 PM

Rep. Broun is the stupid fuck who lectured the House of Representatives on how not to pause when saying "under God" in the pledge of allegiance. He must think he's going to live to be a thousand years old cuz he sure is wasting the time away on dumbass crap that does nothing for his country or his constituents.

Posted by gag | May 7, 2008 4:58 PM

wouldn't a "queer way" to support the troops involve putting on a fabulous uso show? i'm confused.

Posted by ellarosa | May 7, 2008 7:29 PM

I'm with 31, I expected something different from this article.

The all twink touring revue maybe?

Posted by Jim | May 7, 2008 11:57 PM

OK - Rep. Broun is nuts. No doubt about it. I am a gay Vietnam veteran. The sex I had while in Vietnam and in bases in the US was fantastic. I was young and cute and that was a good time in my life, I had other Airmen friends who were straight and they were essentially free and open to playing with a buddy. This new generation of anally retentive assholes holding office in these United States disgusts me. I would have thought that in 2008 we would no longer have the myths and lies relating to sex and sexual behavior among men (masturbation groups - of gay and straight men together were very common back then)continue to have credence. This is ludicrous.

I wrote Rep Broun and told him what a nutcase I feel he is. Get these assholes out of our Congress. They are simply embarrassing. Sex is a blessing and sexual expression is a joy. Broun is a fool and he needs to shut up and go home. PEACE

Posted by thomas | May 14, 2008 12:25 PM

I posted as a veteran who knows something about this issue. When I last checked my post was here. For some reason it has been delected or censored. WTF? This is a true insult. PEACE

Posted by thomas | May 14, 2008 12:52 PM

I apologize foir my last post. I do see my first post here. Please excuse the misunderstanding.

Posted by thomas | May 14, 2008 12:54 PM

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