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Author Topic: Images that Offend  (Read 41420 times)
Carl Harsch
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« Reply #20 on: March 25, 2007, 09:44:35 AM »
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I know that I'm alive and I know that I'm not alone and I don't need debate to provide that information

Besides, I'm not sure what more I could add to this topic.  It's very similar to a debate on free speech and at what point free speech of one individual impedes on the freedoms of another.  I'm more on the receiving end than the sending end with regards to posted images as I don't find myself taking images that may offend the majority of a group (many of my images offend many, but it's mainly because of lack of talent rather than subject matter   )

From my personal point of view, I am not "offended" by images or words, although there are those that I'd rather not view/hear because they don't align with my interests.  Fortunately the really bizarre photographs that border on the edge of repulsion are not found by accident and one has to actively seek such images.  

While I do not support censorship, I do believe that there are times when the rights of the artist begin to infringe upon the rights of the viewer.   At what point that occurs, I don't know.  I'm sure it will vary between cultures and even individuals.  And, hence the problem we continually encounter and will likely continue to encounter ad nauseum throughout our lifetimes.
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Rob C
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« Reply #21 on: March 25, 2007, 03:54:53 PM »
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Carl - there you are - you do exist and I've confirmed it for you; and don't you feel so much better for having stated your point of view?

Only joking... maybe I don't exist either; perhaps I'm but another squeak in this cranky old laptop that has this amazing life of its own: I have to post my messages before I've finished just to ensure that the damn thing sends them before it dies again.

Maybe nothing exists.

Ciao - Rob C
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Eric Myrvaagnes
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« Reply #22 on: March 25, 2007, 05:36:15 PM »
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Maybe nothing exists.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=108633\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]
My former department chair (mathematics) was fond of quoting what he called "second-order DesCartes":

"I think I think; therefore I think I am."


 
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Ray
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« Reply #23 on: March 26, 2007, 12:07:33 AM »
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"I think I think; therefore I think I am."
 
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=108651\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]
 

There's no difference between thinking that you think, and plain thinking. It's all thinking   .
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Ray
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« Reply #24 on: March 26, 2007, 01:00:39 AM »
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On a more serious note, I'm quite surprised, in this day and age, that this topic has centred so much around sex.

There's no doubt that images can be extremely offensive. In Australia we seem to be less 'religion obsessed' than America. Less prudish, perhaps. On free-to-air public TV broadcasts, almost anything goes except erect penises and 'real' sexual intercourse (as opposed to simulated sexual intercourse).

However, we do have consideration for the frail at heart, for those of a nervous disposition who have perhaps led a very sheltered life, and even for those who may not have led a particularly sheltered life but who consider certain objects as sacred and not for public view. I'm thinking here of Aboriginals who are offended if personal artifacts of their ancestors are publicly displayed, such as dug-up skeletons perhaps thousands of years old.

One has to be sensible about such a mix of different sensitivities. Few of us want to live in a 'nanny' state where we are all treated like children. In Australia, we not only have a variety of classifications for broadcast material, which give a fair indication of possible offensive content, such as; nudity, strong sex, violence, drugs, foul language etc. (in short, all the good things in life. Just kidding    ), but such programs are broadcast late in the evening when all good, dutiful children should be in bed.

It's a compromise, of course. It has to be in a free liberal society.

Sometimes, of course, the ends justify the means. It's okay to show images of starving kids in Africa (and that surely must be extremely upsetting for most of us) because it's going to bring in donations which (hopefully) will help those kids.

It's not okay to show real footage of road accident victims, moaning and groaning in a horrible manner, severed limbs, smashed faces and blood pouring everywhere, because that's too close to home. It would certainly encourage people to drive with more care, but it would also nauseate too many viewers. Might even cause some viewers to never drive a car again.

Okay! After so much pontificating, you will understand I hope , that you cannot escape another image from me, to demonstrate a point.

The nude females in a suggested lesbian embrace, in Michael's review of the HP printer, are very small beer in the general scheme of things. People who get offended by this should take a hard look at themselves. There are far more important things to get offended about in this world.

However, as a humorous antidote to any such offense in that printer review, I offer the following image, which I took in Kagbeni, Nepal. This statue is in a public place where kids of all ages play.

[attachment=2178:attachment]
« Last Edit: March 26, 2007, 01:29:18 AM by Ray » Logged
Ray
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« Reply #25 on: March 26, 2007, 05:34:54 AM »
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Having had further thoughts on the above image, I would respectfully request that Howard does not criticise this image on the grounds it is soemone els'e art work.  
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David Anderson
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« Reply #26 on: March 26, 2007, 06:36:00 AM »
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Ray, don't tell them about all the topless girls on the beeches or there will be a stampede...
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Rob C
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« Reply #27 on: March 28, 2007, 08:52:57 AM »
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Ray

There are those about who would be offended, deeply hurt even, by such misuse of good cigars.

Ciao - Rob C
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Ray
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« Reply #28 on: March 28, 2007, 11:17:52 AM »
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Ray

There are those about who would be offended, deeply hurt even, by such misuse of good cigars.

Ciao - Rob C
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=109116\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Hhmm! It is a bit small, isn't it! I hope this wonderful work of art is not mere local vandalism; or just something to amuse the tourists   .
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Rob C
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« Reply #29 on: March 28, 2007, 11:46:46 AM »
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Hhmm! It is a bit small, isn't it! I hope this wonderful work of art is not mere local vandalism; or just something to amuse the tourists  .
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=109138\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

WARNING: This post contains material that might cause some Scots to become aroused, deeply hurt and even violent. This is not a criticism, just an observation based on twenty-eight years of living there.

Ray - if that had been on display in my old hang-out, Glasgow, the cigar wouldn't have lasted a full five minutes; even the guy might have had problems...

Cheers - Rob C
« Last Edit: March 28, 2007, 11:47:55 AM by Rob C » Logged

Ray
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« Reply #30 on: March 28, 2007, 11:59:01 AM »
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Ray - if that had been on display in my old hang-out, Glasgow, the cigar wouldn't have lasted a full five minutes; even the guy might have had problems...
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=109149\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Rob,
Are you saying your old hang-out was the Gorbals?   . My father was raised in Glasgow and I got the impression the Gorbals was the Scottish equivalent of Harlem in New York.
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Rob C
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« Reply #31 on: March 28, 2007, 02:33:15 PM »
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Rob,
Are you saying your old hang-out was the Gorbals?   . My father was raised in Glasgow and I got the impression the Gorbals was the Scottish equivalent of Harlem in New York.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=109154\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Ray - No, not quite, but then again, which Gorbals? There have been several iterations: the first one I remember seeing was old tenement buildings; these were knocked over in a brave new tax-wasting venture and replaced with modern ugly which, in turn, had to be knocked down and so it goes, on and on in a socialist-run society.

Actually, there have been some rather fetching shots made of the old Gorbals by various people; that they had the nerve to try might perhaps be explained by the hidden presence of mounted police or, more likely, the naive way in which the downtrodden of the world have always been open to, and have embraced, exploitation. I did, once, have a vague stab at doing 'tough', back in about '56 I think. I remember driving into Glasgow up to the bridge over the Clyde at the end of Eglington Street, parking, and getting out of the little 3-wheel car - a Bond (which has nothing to do with the Bond that came later, believe me!), and walking towards the river. It was foggy, as usual, and I had a Vito B... wow! Anyway, after a couple of shots I felt that the risk of standing there was not commensurate with the value of what I was doing. I left quickly, all 197cc of Villiers two-stroke working hard. That was all kind of to the west of Gorbals, but in the days of the razor artists, quite close enough.

For your Dad's interest, I lived at Rouken Glen, another priceless spot which is being slowly attacked around the edges. Progress, you understand.

Stay cool - Rob C
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howiesmith
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« Reply #32 on: March 28, 2007, 05:39:05 PM »
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On a more serious note, I'm quite surprised, in this day and age, that this topic has centred so much around sex.

However, we do have consideration for the frail at heart, for those of a nervous disposition who have perhaps led a very sheltered life, and even for those who may not have led a particularly sheltered life but who consider certain objects as sacred and not for public view.

One has to be sensible about such a mix of different sensitivities.

Sometimes, of course, the ends justify the means.

[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=108688\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Ray, for your education, there are many people in this world that chose to live a modest life, not because they are frail at heart, are nervous, have lived a sheltered life or are afraid of being punished.  Considering some things as private certainly need not be the result of any of those things.  Many chose such life styles because of the joy and piece it brings.  And many of those expect to be mocked for holding such beliefs.

And yes, one should be sensitive to such peoples' feeling and beliefs.  It is not an imperative (has to be), but a good way to live for some in a free liberal society or even a conservative society.  Keep in mind the cultural differences betwee Australia (original white setttlers were criminals) and the USA (original white settlers seeking freedom of (not from) religion).

Ray, when exactly does the "ends justify the means?"  This term more often than not means that an immoral, unjust or wrong action is OK as long as it produces a moral, just or right result.  But then, if you actually believe this, you must be ready to accept any and all results.  And how do you (or who?) decide what is a moral, just or right result?

In spite of your respectful request, in my opinion, the image you posted is not art nor an image of someone else's art.  Rather it is an image of an idol of some folks in Nepal.  But for the erect penis, you would have taken the image, and certainly not posted it here.  You posted it merely to try to offend.

For my education, is the smiley face thing you so often post Australian for "Wink.  Wink.  Giggle giggle.  I just made a sophomoric joke"?
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Ray
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« Reply #33 on: March 28, 2007, 10:39:23 PM »
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Howard,
My initial reaction to your post was to ignore it in order to avoid any flare-up of religious discussin which is not allowed on this site.

However, I can't resist the urge to educate you   . First, the use of smilies. Sometimes they might mean, 'wink, wink. I just made a sophomore joke', but more often they are used when I sense that certain individuals might misconstrue my intent. Everything we write has to be interpreted at some level and often a statement or phrase or expression will be interpreted differently by different readers.

For example, when I write, 'I can't resist the urge to educate you', I add a smilie in order to reduce the likelihood of a response such as, 'How dare you criticise my level of education. I've got 3 degrees and six diplomas and have sat on this committee and that peer review panel, blah, blah, blah', all of which is beside the point.

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Keep in mind the cultural differences betwee Australia (original white setttlers were criminals) and the USA (original white settlers seeking freedom of (not from) religion).

So let me educate you. Before England began shipping some of its convicts to Australia, they had already been shipping them for a century or so to America. As a result of the American War of Independence, it became no longer possible to continue shipping convicts to America, so Britain chose Australia as an alternative solution.

Here's an extract from the following book, "COMPREHENSIVE HISTORY OF EASTHAM, WELLFLEET AND ORLEANS by Rev. Enoch Pratt pub 1844 Describing 17th Century Massachusetts and the Customs of our Forefathers"

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Soon after the settling of Jamestown, there was a tremendous demand for labour, skilled and unskilled, in the American colonies. Many early Virginians were English convicts who arrived in this country as "transported " felons. In England a system was introduced in 1655 which enabled death sentences to be reduced to transportation overseas, and two years later justices of the peace were empowered to transport vagrants. Many crimes carried the death penalty, but today many of those crimes would be considered misdemeanors.

After 1655 and before the Transportation Act of 1718 some prisoners of each circuit court were selected to be reprieved from the gallows on condition of their accepting a term of transportation to the Colonies. Each formal pardon, signed by the king, was enrolled in the great series of patent rolls that are preserved in the Public Record Office in London as Class C 66.

Nearly 400 convict ships carrying 50,000 men, women and children left England bound for the American colonies where their human cargoes were sold and/or indentured as servants to work off their passage for a term of years. Facilities were developed for the reception and sale of convicted prisoners. The tidal wave of involuntary laborers became known as ``His Majesty's Seven-Year Passengers.'' Of the more than 400 convict ships identified as having crossed the Atlantic from the ports of London, Bristol, Liverpool and Bideford between 1716 and 1776, a dozen or so were destined for the West Indies or the Carolinas before 1730. Thereafter Maryland or Virginia were the invariable destinations. English prisons were cleared on a regular basis two or three times a year at times to suit demands of tobacco exporters in the colonies.


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Ray, when exactly does the "ends justify the means?"  This term more often than not means that an immoral, unjust or wrong action is OK as long as it produces a moral, just or right result.  But then, if you actually believe this, you must be ready to accept any and all results.  And how do you (or who?) decide what is a moral, just or right result?


Howard, this has been the subject of philosophical discussion for millennia. What exactly? There's obviously no simple answer to that. I would say that I tend to subscribe to the philosophy of the Utilitarians, such as Jeremy Bentham, which could be summarised as 'the greatest happiness for the greatest number of people'. There are always winners and losers throughout history. Whatever policies are adopted, whatever changes to legislation are made, we can't avoid the fact there will be some losers as a result of those changes. If a government decides to build a new highway to ease traffic congestion, it may have to resume property where people have lived for years. The monetary compensation often cannot compensate for the emotional loss. In such circumstances, the greater good should prevail.

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In spite of your respectful request, in my opinion, the image you posted is not art nor an image of someone else's art.  Rather it is an image of an idol of some folks in Nepal.  But for the erect penis, you would have taken the image, and certainly not posted it here.  You posted it merely to try to offend.

Rubbish, Howard. If I'd wanted to offend, I have far better images than that I could have posted. I posted it as a harmless piece of jocular humour which I thought was apposite in relation to another image in a recent printer review from Michael, which I thought was equally harmless.
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Rob C
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« Reply #34 on: March 29, 2007, 09:42:49 AM »
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Ray, Howie, guys, guys!

Look, the US constitution, I'm told, guarantees freedom both FOR and FROM religion.

I have been chastised for being too secular - oh well, perhaps, but in my own way I too have a God, an original creator, some being/entity/power that got this entire show, as we know it, on the road.

What I object to is the form of preaching, carping and bloodthirsty religionist who says my way is the only way; really? so what about all the millions of souls who existed before the events of circa 2007 years ago; are they all condemned to some imagined form of hellfire because they were born too early to hear about the 'only' way that gets preached by both christian and moslem? I think not. I think that God is part of every single one of us; that he is part of every form of life as we are too.

I do not deny that religions do, in chosen bits, provide admirable rules for communal living; I do deny that any single one has all the answers.

I do believe that the God within us is the only one we need concern ourselves with; the reality is there along with the power to chose good or evil, two basic, commonly understood paths. Which we choose does not depend on religion but on our own set of values which are fashioned by and for us as we grow from kid to adult.

So, lighten up, guys, we are not the first beings to wonder about the majesty of it all; we will not be the last.

As for this this site permitting or not permitting discussions such as this: If you take away the human all you have left is the geek.

Ciao - Rob C
« Last Edit: March 29, 2007, 01:39:50 PM by Rob C » Logged

Ray
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« Reply #35 on: March 29, 2007, 07:17:06 PM »
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America, at least during my lifetime, has had a tradition of getting things first; the latest products and innovations.

It's ironic she was also the first to get our British convicts   .
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Eric Myrvaagnes
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« Reply #36 on: March 29, 2007, 10:45:14 PM »
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America, at least during my lifetime, has had a tradition of getting things first; the latest products and innovations.

It's ironic she was also the first to get our British convicts   .
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Ray,
Your history lesson perhaps helps explain why drivers in and around Boston (where I live) are among the worst in the world. Maybe most of us are descended from convicts.

By the way, EASTHAM, WELLFLEET AND ORLEANS are nice places to photograph.
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Ray
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« Reply #37 on: March 29, 2007, 11:08:55 PM »
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Your history lesson perhaps helps explain why drivers in and around Boston (where I live) are among the worst in the world. Maybe most of us are descended from convicts.

Ho! Ho!, You're getting into dangerous territory there, Eric, by suggesting there might be such a thing as a criminal gene.

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By the way, EASTHAM, WELLFLEET AND ORLEANS are nice places to photograph.

I know (believe) there are lots of great places to photograph in America. Maybe now the Aussie dollar is rising against the greenback, I should think of making a trip to America. Perhaps I'll wait until we get parity.  
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Ray
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« Reply #38 on: March 30, 2007, 01:00:57 AM »
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I hope Howard is not frantically searching the genealogy web sites to find out if his great, great, great, grandfather was a rapist or a murderer. Don't waste your time, Howard. There's no gene for such traits. Better not to know, psychologically.
« Last Edit: March 30, 2007, 02:10:27 AM by Ray » Logged
wynpotter
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« Reply #39 on: April 01, 2007, 02:24:17 PM »
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If I may add a bit to this thread.
Images do not exist. What exist is just the interpertation of random points of light, and in the case of digital, numbers collected and displayed on paper or CRT/LCD. If we take any single point, it is just that, or several or even a collection. They are just points of ink or light, what we create out of them is unique and in our mind.
Remember Edward Weston's B&W of the bell peper that looked to some as a nude with her legs curled under and head hidden by her body-----or was that just me? he most likely had the pepper with dinner that evening.
To belabour my point, we create our values based on our history and culture but it is not a given that what we see is real(based on the influences in our life)
We are lied to daily, to get our money(adverts) and support. Truth is the hardest commodity to find and easy to loose.
If you don't like what your mind sees, ask yourself why before being offended by a random pattern of dots on a page, it may well be all in your head. Wyndham
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