Monday, June 12, 2006

censorship

Here’s my rant of the week. I get so annoyed by people who think they know all about censorship. The following is an account of one of my coworkers, so I really can’t verify the truthfulness of it, but I’ll respond to her story as if it is all correct.

My coworker went to Deseret Industries (a thrift store run by the LDS church) this weekend. She said she was surprised to find the bookshelves nearly empty, so she asked someone about it.

She said that the store manager told her that many of the books contained inappropriate content, and they weren’t going to sell them.

My coworker then asked if they were taking the books out back to burn them. (I’ll pause here and say that my coworker knows I am LDS, so I wonder why she would say such insulting things about my church to my face.)

She said that the manager simply responded that the books were inappropriate and wouldn’t be sold.

Her response to me? “What’s next? Are they going refuse to sell clothing that’s a little ‘provocative’?!!!”

Well, knowing the standards of my church, YES! That’s exactly the kind of thing they won’t sell. And you know what? They have every right to choose what they sell in their store, because it’s a private company. They aren’t the library. Their objective isn’t to provide unbiased information and knowledge to the world. I’m not the expert on D.I., but I would say their objective is to provide training to help employees find steady, long-term employment while at the same time providing clean, low-priced items to those in need.

D.I. and any other store has the right to sell or not sell anything they please. It gets on my nerves when people get up in arms about censorship in a situation like this. It makes no sense. If you don’t like what a store is selling (or not selling), don’t shop there! Go buy your trashy novels elsewhere and don’t expect a church run store to sell stuff it considers inappropriate. It isn’t obligated to.

Okay. I'm done now. Thanks for listening.

6 comments:

east of eden said...

I think you are totally right about this. DI is a private store, and you are also right about the mission of DI, which is to provide job-training and to those in need.

I wonder if your co-worker has had this same snit in a Wal-Mart, because you know, Wal-Mart...another private company...also does not sell things (mostly CDs & video games) which have offensive content.

As far as the libaray goes, it's sad that a community cannot set standard as to what it will have or not have in its libarary, because someone's first amendment rights might me trampled on. IMO, you want to watch porn or whatever, get a cheap comptuer and an free AOL subscription and go home.

And that was my rant....

And on another totally unrelated note, now that I've give you the hummus recipie, I have to go and get the ingredients because I'm totally craving it. Oh, and if you cannot find sesame tahini, you can use smooth peanut butter.

ttfn. :)

billie said...

I'm with you on this one too. You're right...it's a church run store. It's just like how some restaurants run by members of the church don't sell alcohol. If you want to drink, go to a different restaurant! If I had a store it wouldn't sell books with inappropriate content either, or alcohol or trashy clothes. It would probably sell shoes.

cr8ive girl said...

You are totally right Holli, especially in the case of a church run store. If stores are allowed to sell smut, alcohol and whatever else it is they sell ( I personally dont want to know) then certainly, a store is allowed to censor whatever it is that they deem inappropriate. Some people need to just chill. And I cant believe this co-worker told you this to your face when it was your church she was being a jerk to... people stink!

Amy

Steve said...

Hey Holli, Great post! I much like the others agree with you. Since it is a privately owned and operated store, they can sell what they want and levy and restrictions as they deem appropriate. If it were a chain store, the circumstances would be a bit different. If people don't like what DI sells, THEN LEAVE! Go buy the harlequin, smutty trash elsewhere. Or, if you go wanna booze it up don't look there! On the flipside, I am sure that Victoria's Secret (or Fredrick's of Hollywood) would not like it if someone walked in there and suggested, then scoffed of what the store SHOULD sell! People should learn to keep their moth shut at times, but with some, even that is a daunting task.

-ST

penguinconqueso said...

Bonehead at DI: "Excuse me? Could you tell me where your old issues of Playboy are?"

...

Bizarre?

TK said...

I have found sesame tahini at Sprouts. FYI...