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NEWS: Iowa Trial over Allegedly Obscene Manga Delayed


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sunflowerseed



Joined: 16 Nov 2008
Posts: 106
Location: South Texas
PostPosted: Tue Feb 03, 2009 12:15 am Reply with quote
I hope the reason is good for the delay request for the trial. It gave me a chance to order a print too.
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GATSU



Joined: 03 Jan 2002
Posts: 14587
PostPosted: Tue Feb 03, 2009 1:03 am Reply with quote
It might mean the judge doesn't take it seriously enough to prioritize, which is a good sign.
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hikaru004



Joined: 15 Mar 2004
Posts: 2306
PostPosted: Tue Feb 03, 2009 1:35 am Reply with quote
It could also mean that the defense is in trouble since that's the side requesting the delay. The bill for the lawyer increases with each delay.
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MagusGuardian



Joined: 05 Nov 2007
Posts: 582
PostPosted: Tue Feb 03, 2009 2:57 am Reply with quote
I honestly do not understand how this case is still going, isn't the evidince the manga he was getting through the mail was searched illegally? sorry if I sound like an idiot about this but honestly I'm lost in all this
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nerdx2000



Joined: 06 Mar 2005
Posts: 13
PostPosted: Tue Feb 03, 2009 4:01 am Reply with quote
MagusGuardian wrote:
I honestly do not understand how this case is still going, isn't the evidince the manga he was getting through the mail was searched illegally? sorry if I sound like an idiot about this but honestly I'm lost in all this



no, the post office can do anything thanks to patriot act,


besides they can just say the manga accidentally fell out and a slow steady breeze turned the pages and that how they saw it.

and the defense is going to be freedom of speech and maybe that those cartoon kids said they were 100-year-old alien robots and thus legal.
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teh*darkness



Joined: 16 Feb 2007
Posts: 901
PostPosted: Tue Feb 03, 2009 4:12 am Reply with quote
MagusGuardian wrote:
I honestly do not understand how this case is still going, isn't the evidince the manga he was getting through the mail was searched illegally? sorry if I sound like an idiot about this but honestly I'm lost in all this


Supposedly the package was in shoddy condition, which was why the postmaster inspected it. And no, it's not illegal for the postmaster to do that, it's his job. This whole case seems to really come down to the fact that the man used the US postal service for his order rather than a 3rd party, like FedEx or UPS (though we don't know if he had that option). Whether he is guilty depends on if the "jury of his peers" decides the manga in his order is obscene. If so, then it was illegal to use the USPS to ship it across state lines. Useless government red-tape BS, but that's what he's trapped in right now. Hopefully, he gets off the hook. Otherwise it will mean bad things for the manga fandom in general.
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hikaru004



Joined: 15 Mar 2004
Posts: 2306
PostPosted: Tue Feb 03, 2009 6:46 am Reply with quote
teh*darkness wrote:
MagusGuardian wrote:
I honestly do not understand how this case is still going, isn't the evidince the manga he was getting through the mail was searched illegally? sorry if I sound like an idiot about this but honestly I'm lost in all this


Supposedly the package was in shoddy condition, which was why the postmaster inspected it. And no, it's not illegal for the postmaster to do that, it's his job. This whole case seems to really come down to the fact that the man used the US postal service for his order rather than a 3rd party, like FedEx or UPS (though we don't know if he had that option). Whether he is guilty depends on if the "jury of his peers" decides the manga in his order is obscene. If so, then it was illegal to use the USPS to ship it across state lines. Useless government red-tape BS, but that's what he's trapped in right now. Hopefully, he gets off the hook. Otherwise it will mean bad things for the manga fandom in general.


Didn't his order come from Japan? FedEX would be the only other carrier that comes from Japan IIRC. Alot of vendors go Japanese international mail to USPS. Either way when coming from Japan, the vendor has to declare what's inside the package and the vendor's name and location via the packing slip that's taped to the front of the package. So the postmaster would know what's inside of the package just not what the content is actually like.

That's why I open my CD and DVD orders from Japan in front of the postal employees to avoid any difficulties.
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pparker



Joined: 13 Oct 2007
Posts: 1185
Location: Florida
PostPosted: Tue Feb 03, 2009 7:49 am Reply with quote
MagusGuardian wrote:
I honestly do not understand how this case is still going, isn't the evidince the manga he was getting through the mail was searched illegally? sorry if I sound like an idiot about this but honestly I'm lost in all this

The USPS can search any item, but the decision to initiate a warrant for a search is up to the individual employee. The whole mess of obscenity law enforcement sort of starts there and snowballs to the court system. Obscenity is subjectively defined at the national level and its final determination is governed by local (city, town level in some instances), and ultimately whether something is obscene or not is decided by 12 individuals on a jury making up their own mind about it within the restrictions of Miller vs. California (1973). The gray area between what is and isn't obscene is vast.

There is also a strong political component. You can do the research, but under liberal administrations (Clinton) very few federal obscenity cases are initiated, and under conservative administrations (Bush), the number grows considerably. It's an "unenforceable" law, that is, there is no way to actually monitor even a small percentage of instances of violation, so the technique is fear by example. Similar to IRS tactics of issuing press releases of tax fraud cases early in the year to discourage tax evasion when people file taxes on April 15.

The reason he is being prosecuted isn't because he was anybody anywhere who received potentially pornographic material through the mail. He is specifically being prosecuted because government agencies with limited budgets have analyzed the community and its laws and have determined that he is a viable (return on investment) target to prosecute. They feel confident he can be convicted and that this will discourage others.

If he had been in another city or state, such as in New York City, they would not have prosecuted him because the likelihood of conviction would be low, thus wasting their time and money. Enforcement agencies also deathly fear the possibility of setting, to them, negative legal precedents that would limit their chances of winning prosecution in future cases.

If his material had been searched in 2009, under Obama, this also might not have happened, though I don't know specifically how the makeup of the federal departments concerned have changed with the new administration. Bush appointed very aggressive, fringe really, religious conservatives to key posts and also specifically increased budgets of agencies involved in obscenity enforcement and prosecution as compensation to right-wing campaign supporters.

Trying to find sense in this is a lost cause. Until we decide that individuals are free to obtain and view any material they want that does not involve causing actual harm to unwilling or unwitting participants (e.g., child porn), as would be logical in a free society, these arbitrary actions will continue to occur.
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TJ_Kat



Joined: 11 Jan 2007
Posts: 267
Location: Saskatoon, Canada
PostPosted: Tue Feb 03, 2009 11:04 am Reply with quote
wasn't this the case where the guy was found to have REAL child porn too, and the manga was just being lumped in with the rest of it?

or am i thinking of something else?
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shadowblack



Joined: 24 Feb 2008
Posts: 37
PostPosted: Tue Feb 03, 2009 11:12 am Reply with quote
TJ_Kat wrote:
wasn't this the case where the guy was found to have REAL child porn too, and the manga was just being lumped in with the rest of it?

or am i thinking of something else?

No, it's not. You're confusing it with another - unrelated - case.
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v1cious



Joined: 31 Dec 2002
Posts: 6088
Location: Houston, TX
PostPosted: Tue Feb 03, 2009 11:12 am Reply with quote
TJ_Kat wrote:
wasn't this the case where the guy was found to have REAL child porn too, and the manga was just being lumped in with the rest of it?

or am i thinking of something else?


no, that guy got sentenced already.
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ayashe



Joined: 31 Mar 2008
Posts: 120
PostPosted: Tue Feb 03, 2009 2:07 pm Reply with quote
This makes me worried about buying manga and doujinshi from Japan online. I don't want to get arrested just because some person who opened my package doesn't like what they see there. What if it was some psycho Christian who hated yaoi?
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N15PCA



Joined: 20 Oct 2007
Posts: 37
Location: San Tan Valley, AZ
PostPosted: Tue Feb 03, 2009 2:39 pm Reply with quote
Quote:
If his material had been searched in 2009, under Obama, this also might not have happened, though I don't know specifically how the makeup of the federal departments concerned have changed with the new administration. Bush appointed very aggressive, fringe really, religious conservatives to key posts and also specifically increased budgets of agencies involved in obscenity enforcement and prosecution as compensation to right-wing campaign supporters.


I'll start out has saying I'm a Republican. Last time I check this was court case that is happing at state level not the federal one. Lets stick to the issue at hand and let's hope this man is found not guilty. I just get sick and tired of Bush bashing when Bush has nothing to do with this case. He isn't even in office anymore.
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daxomni



Joined: 08 Nov 2005
Posts: 2650
Location: Somewhere else.
PostPosted: Tue Feb 03, 2009 2:53 pm Reply with quote
N15PCA wrote:
I'll start out has saying I'm a Republican. Last time I check this was court case that is happing at state level not the federal one. Lets stick to the issue at hand and let's hope this man is found not guilty. I just get sick and tired of Bush bashing when Bush has nothing to do with this case. He isn't even in office anymore.

I could swear this case started while Bush was still in office and his Attorney General was setting the bar for obscenity lawsuits. I'm not sure if you're aware but the right-wing anti-obscenity machine has been going after bizarre obscenity charges for decades. It all started with Ronald Reagan and it's been like this every time a Republican administration has been in office ever since. What was John Ashcroft doing just before 9-11? He was about to announce a series of indictments against pornography titles involving consenting adults. No joke. You can't make this stuff up. Who you vote for DOES make a difference when it comes to personal freedoms.
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fighterholic



Joined: 28 Sep 2005
Posts: 9193
PostPosted: Tue Feb 03, 2009 3:03 pm Reply with quote
daxomni wrote:
I could swear this case started while Bush was still in office and his Attorney General was setting the bar for obscenity lawsuits. I'm not sure if you're aware but the right-wing anti-obscenity machine has been going after bizarre obscenity charges for decades. It all started with Ronald Reagan and it's been like this every time a Republican administration has been in office ever since. What was John Ashcroft doing just before 9-11? He was about to announce a series of indictments against pornography titles involving consenting adults. No joke. You can't make this stuff up. Who you vote for DOES make a difference when it comes to personal freedoms.

Gee, I think that it's pretty obvious that this case was started before Obama got sworn in Rolling Eyes Obscenity can and does play a role for problems in people's lives. You can say things about Bush all you want but in reality he directly has nothing to do with this case. How about let's focus on what's at hand, which is the case.
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