A proposed bylaw is seeking to declare a local comic book store an "over 18 only" pornography outlet.
This is just ridiculous. Three years ago, businesses in Medicine Hat were sent a "goodwill" letter asking that they conceal porn and adult materials from children in their store. Now, the concerned citizens responsible are claiming that only 4% of those businesses complied with the requests of the letter. Therefore, they demand that legal actions must be taken.
In all those three years, they never once contacted Comic Readers to explain what it was that they found so objectionable. According to the protestors, it's simple. They define pornograpy "in plain English: a magazine that sells sex."
Isn't it nice to be able to talk in plain English? In plain English: Buildings are square. In plain English: Alcohol causes fatalities. In plain English: The Winnipeg Blue Bombers cheat.
Plain English is great for talking about emotions. Descriptions, however, tend to require a bit more describing. Would they be so kind as to point out the line between "A: Female (or male) form represented pictorally" and "B: Explicit encouragement to engage in illegal sexual activity"? There is no line. There's only an opinion, and the fear that your opinion won't be heard above all the others.
So, maybe to some people, Comic Readers is filled with "B: (Explicit)" material. When I walk inside, though, I see the standard assortment of teenage power fantasies in spandex, along with a few romance titles, and some adult comics with a crude sense of humour. That's it. I've been in comic shops that my skin crawl, and this isn't one of them. It's a good place, and it might have to change so that it can accommodate a standard that it never crossed, which is enforced by people who've never been inside it.
I was looking forward to a productive day of writing. Instead, here I am, sketching out a rough draft for my letter to city council.
What a rotten day.