(The Return of) Ignatz, by Sam Heldman

Friday, October 11, 2002

The General Counsel of Brookstone must be breathing a great sigh of relief, as Howard Bashman has brought to our attention the recent decision of U.S. Dist. Ct., N.D. Ala., striking down as unconstitutional the Alabama statute prohibiting the sale or importation of devices intended for stimulation of the genitals. (Just kidding, of course -- everybody knows that those Brookstone devices are for back massage, or calf massage, or something. Don't sue me.). Go immediately to Howard's site to download and read the opinion -- immensely scholarly, with citations to those two noted historians of sexuality, Michel Foucault and Richard Posner. (Really). I love, love, love, the fact that Foucault has been cited in a published judicial opinion. Fancy French philosopher posthumously comes to Alabama to save the vibrators. If you live in a state other than Alabama, you may think this is all a hoax, because surely no state would do something so silly as to outlaw vibrators. It is not a hoax. Kudos to the plaintiffs' lawyers, whoever they were, for compiling an impressive historical analysis to support their constitutional argument.

Further thought: I keep singing to myself Beck's brilliant line, "I want to defy the logic of all sex laws." It's one thing to break a law and another, much more challenging thing, to defy the logic of it entirely. He must have been reading Foucault.

posted by sam 4:06 PM 0 comments


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