“Howl against censorship”…


There is quite a bit of irony at present over a poem, of all things, that fifty years ago Judge Clayton Horn ruled “not obscene”, http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2007/10/02/MNOPS/M67.DTL&hw=howl+too+hot+to+hear&sn=001&sc=1000 , he even further explained back in 1957, unpublished of course, “would there be any freedom of press or speech if one must reduce his vocabulary to vapid innocuous euphemism?- An author should be real in treating his subject and be allowed to express his thoughts and ideas in his own words.”

Naturally… one would think- yes, of course.

So why, in our fully saturated media-image-laden culture, where exposure to so much more than letters written, then maybe even spoken/read, (if you’re lucky from a real-live person),  from a page is cause for such trepidation or “controversy”- golly! 

And unless I’ve been living in a cave somewhere,  reading itself, I mean really reading i.e., actively engaged; something of substance- not of the mind-numbing, cliche, Halequin-escapism genre;  has been taking a nosedive down the drain for quite some time.  I can’t say we’re suffering a national crisis in this area currently.   

So now, what the auditory senses may, (but probably will not- you will encounter more of the glazed-over, confused vacuous void- those synapses and connections haven’t been used in awhile), capture if they haven’t already been damaged from higher than normal decibel frequencies of the vast array of “noise” pollution littered everywhere, hardly seems like much to worry over, right?

‘Howl’ really gets the bug-up-the-ass, still today.  Taking on the FCC is not a light affair, to be sure, but when will we see how hypocritical and draconian this all is?

In the meantime, if your cerebral membranes are fairly intact,  regularly exercised, and you are not a walking zombie at present, you might enjoy Gingsberg’s reading in full at: www.pacifica.org  along with the full text if not in your physical possession: http://members.tripod.com/~Strawberry/poems/howl.txt .

Vive la resistance!

~ by shantam on October 6, 2007.

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