Sunday, June 25, 2006

We live in very strange times. . .

I read this today… and I find myself thinking more and more about it.

You can see a 'G' rated pic here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/48600077142@N01/166601565/

What is it with our society?

A teacher can spout anti-government rhetoric, or take and promote a “kill ‘em all” line with respect to the war on terror, and there’d be no ‘outcry’, no out right ‘dismissal’ and a call for a revocation of his/her teaching certificate.

Show a nipple however, and well…. You can’t be teaching art to students in Austin...

What is it anyway about the female nipple that makes it such a ‘forbidden’ item? I watch the Discovery Health channel from time to time and I’m always amazed that while they can show a flaccid penis, they always ‘blur out’ a woman’s nipple. They’ll show the rest of the breast… and just blur out the nipple.

Is there some sort of secret, uncontrollable ‘urge’ that drives, other men, but not me, insane with lust at the sight of a nipple? Did I miss some instant nipple arousal genetic trigger in my DNA?

While I’ll admit I’m as big a fan of the female body as anyone, I’m not instantly aroused to the point of distraction at the sight of a naked female, unless it happens to be my wife… and she’s ‘nekked’ as opposed to ‘naked’ (Nekked for those of you who don’t know, is naked, with “intent”)

At what point does the nipple cross the line from its utilitarian function of nurturing an infant, to being something that MUST remain hidden at all times lest it unleash a torrent of unmanageable arousal in all who see it?

I’ll go out on a limb here and suggest that there are just as many women who like to see a bare male chest, as there are men who like to see a female one. Somehow though our society has deemed that women are far more ‘in control’ of their hormonal ‘urges’ than we men are, regardless of age. I think I’m more than a little offended by that assumption.

I think also that this has far deeper reaching aspects than just this one teacher, and these pictures. Could an employer of mine find my blog (it certainly wouldn’t be difficult) and decide that, this post for example, violates some ‘decency’ clause in the employee handbook, or a contract? Could I be blacklisted as a contractor, potential employee, or dismissed from the job?

It’s possible, and while I could probably win a wrongful termination suit… it would, no doubt, be an expensive legal battle, and once won would certainly narrow my chances for future employment.

Most of you who stop in here are also bloggers, your lives are out here, a diary for all to see, have you ever posted anything that could be viewed the wrong way?

So what do you think? Is the simple depiction of a woman, without clothes, or semi-clad, pornography? Or is it, as she claims, art?

I’ve not seen the actual pictures in question, but as I understand it, these were candid shots of her doing everyday things, like laundry, changing her clothes, etc. They did not depict any sexual acts, either alone or with others.

You, my readers, are a pretty level headed bunch so I’m asking you, does this strike you as an overreaction, or is management doing the right thing here?

--------------------------------------

I’ve scanned a dozen or so ‘Before’ outside photos of the house and I’ll have them posted today at www.thecoupes.org . As always, you’re welcome to drop in there and take a look.

I may have to turn off the public viewing in the next day or so as the pics begin to hit the google image search, I don’t need the additional traffic! Once again, I offer you regular readers the opportunity to register for the site, it’s free and you’ll never receive any spam I promise. If you’re concerned about divulging personal information, just place gibberish in those fields, we’re just gathering it for family mailings etc anyway.

As always, thanks for stopping in.

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13 comments:

Lorna said...

I would be far more concerned with things on the 'hate' side---like homophobia, war-mongering, racism than I ever would be about natural photos. But then, I am a liberal socialist.

seeingdouble said...

While I agree that this is an over-reaction, the teacher should have made a better decision than putting them on Flickr. They're boobs, whats the big deal!!

jenbeauty said...

*flash*....giggles....just being smart!

Bill said...

Lorna - Yep.. that's my take as well, and I am not a liberal socialist :)

Crystal - I agree a less than public venue would have been a much smarter decision. - As for the big deal... for me it's all in the context... right context, big deal... any other time not such a big deal.

Jen - I think I blinked! :)

Beth said...

Well, I think some men do go absolutely bonkers at the sight of breasts. My BIL would be one, but I think it's the fact that female breasts (especially the nipple) is made so tawdry by society that makes it a "no no." My daughter had a teacher last year that actually re-wrote history to fit his own personal view. I think that's worse than a nipple any day!

Greg said...

Bill nothin' beats a good nipple at the right time...well anytime. I don't go bonkers but I do appreciate female anatomy and think we should have less Victorian laws...like Toronto! for instance.

Now this flap seems to be about spite...if I read it correctly and nipples and breast and nudity were secondary...guess I'll have to check out the pictures...see if they are really art.

Bill said...

Beth - I have to acknowledge that soem guys just seem 'over the top' when little flesh is revealed... me, I'm only gonna get worked up if I know that reveal was intended for *me* :)

I also agree it's the 'forbidden' aspect our society places on it that creates that reaction.

Greg - Yep... the victorians had their shot, time to oust those old ways!!

Good luck on finding the actual pics at this point... but you're right, the story seems more rooted in another person's spite than in any 'decency' qwest!

Good to see your pixels bro!

Be looking for an email... got stuff to tell ya!

Firehawk said...

Bill,

I think the desperate, strident yelling at things as small and innocent as a flash of female flesh have to be some sort of psychosis. I see these reactions all the time, to language, to momentary nudity, to anything imaginable.

I wonder what these people do for a living, spending so much of their time being offended and mortified by standard human forms and behaviors. It really distresses me that I can't even fathom their state of mind. These "Values" people are really an enigma to me. They act as if they've never been nude, never enjoyed a sexual experience, never been upset and swore. Sounds hypocritical to me.

I agree that the things we do in public will always have some bearing on how we're viewed by society at large, but look at the film stars who have appeared naked (and in suggestive situations) in their movies--are their morals called into question at every turn? Surely, more young people will see them in said films than ever do in a classroom.

If I were an administrator at a school in which a teacher had appeared online in nude photos, I would probably feel moved to speak to him or her about it and pose the question of whether or not that was wise and seemly, but if he or she had a strong argument for those pictures being artistic and not pornographic in nature, I would have to listen to that argument. There is some question as to whether having a teacher's students see her naked on line promotes a good atmosphere in class, but really, shouldn't we be evolved enough as human beings to appreciate someone's body without becoming permanently overwhelmed by the image?

Trevor Record said...

I got it bad, got it bad, got it bad.

I'm hot for teacher.

Bill said...

Firehawk - I'd have to agree posting the pics on a public site was probably not the most well thought out thing... I'm with you though, don't these types have any *real* issues to worry about? Like if their lawn is getting enough water?

Trevor - Aren't young boys supposed to be hot for the young teachers?

MajorDad said...

Hmmmm...with all the nonsense floating around about trying to blame MySpace for bad parenting, I think that it also is not showing tremendously good judgement when a teacher shows up on a publicly accessible website in the "all together."

I too don't mind a little nakedness or nekkidness, but when it comes to my kids teachers...I'd probably feel more comfortable with doing the undressing with my eyes at a parent-teacher conference than knowing what said teacher looked like nekkid.

It also has to do with community standards. Most teacher contracts do contain a moral turpitude clause...although that can be interpreted as many different ways as positions I've now seen Ms. Hoover in.

I think the Austin Independent School District should probably use this situation as a learning one...and putting the rest of the staff on notice about floating "stuff" out on the Internet. It could mean your job in the future...

See you on the high ground.

MajorDad1984

Bhuwan said...

I feel it's inappropriate at times to cross the line of decency. But at the same time, the whole 'thing' could have been given a lesser damn.

Bill said...

MajorDad - Thanks, yep.. a lot of better ways to handle this in my mind as well.

bhuwan - I agree... it was a poor decision on her part... but not that big a deal.