by Bill Greer
The career of Anthony Comstock shows what can happen when a highly committed moral crusader gains traction in the political system. His rehabilitation in the contemporary abortion war is cause for concern.
SOURCE: The Hill
by Jonathan Friedman and Amy Werbel
Anthony Comstock drew on elite connections to give himself near unilateral power to confiscate "obscene, lewd, lascivious, indecent, or immoral" materials —terms he was free to define on his own—and prosecute people for possessing them. Right-wing politicians seem to be inspired by the example.
SOURCE: Made By History at the Washington Post
by Kelsy Burke
Calls by J.D. Vance and other conservative politicians for bans on pornography echo the tactics and the failures of America's first anti-obscenity crusader, Anthony Comstock.
Inside the 1980s Phenomenon of "Truly Tasteless Jokes" and What it Says about a Cultural Shift around Offensiveness
The wildly successful series of paperbacks heralded a moment when the embrace of offensiveness as a political weapon was shifting from the left to the right (audio contains the contents of some Truly Tasteless Jokes).
SOURCE: New York Times
"Mr. Flynt’s interpretation was simpler. 'If the First Amendment will protect a scumbag like me,' he said, 'then it will protect all of you. Because I’m the worst'."
While generally disapproved in polite company, swear words are a powerful and entrenched aspect of language around the world. Nic Cage will host a series examining their historical origins and use.
SOURCE: The Conversation
by Kirk Hazen
Minced oaths have historically performed a very specific role: providing a weakened but socially acceptable form of an actual religious oath, swear or curse.
- Josh Hawley Earns F in Early American History
- Does Germany's Holocaust Education Give Cover to Nativism?
- "Car Brain" Has Long Normalized Carnage on the Roads
- Hawley's Use of Fake Patrick Henry Quote a Revealing Error
- Health Researchers Show Segregation 100 Years Ago Harmed Black Health, and Effects Continue Today
- Nelson Lichtenstein on a Half Century of Labor History
- Can America Handle a 250th Anniversary?
- New Research Shows British Industrialization Drew Ironworking Methods from Colonized and Enslaved Jamaicans
- The American Revolution Remains a Hotly Contested Symbolic Field
- Untangling Fact and Fiction in the Story of a Nazi-Era Brothel