My 4th grade daughter has some kind of school assignment where she’s supposed to write a letter to President Obama and tell him something she would like him to do as President. It’s pretty open ended. They’re just supposed to advocate for an issue that’s important to them.
My daughter decided she wants to end pornography, and wants to tell the President he should make pr0n illegal.
I tried to gently explain the First Amendment, and why pornography couldn’t be banned even if she didn’t like it. I told her it was ok that she didn’t like it, and she didn’t have to look at it (not that I think she actually has, but I’ve caught her closing browser windows really quickly when I come into the room, so who knows these days?), but that she couldn’t tell other people not to look at it.
My wife disagrees, and thinks that pr0n sucks, and has encouraged her to go right ahead and tell Obama to ban it.
We had a bit of a tiff over it last night. She said I was trying to defend something that was misogynist and degrading to women (my wife is a bit of an old school feminist, plus she’s a Catholic).
I told her I wasn’t trying to defnd porn per se, but was only trying to explain the First Amendment.
My wife said fuck my First Amendment. She said I could go downstairs and fuck my First Amendment on the couch. She said I could go live with my First Amendment in the car.
So I had to cave on that really fast, and said that our daughter should write whatever is in her heart.
But who’s really right as far as what should be taught? Is there anything wrong with trying to explain the concept of free speech, or (as my wife says), is that too nuanced for a 10 year old (albeit an exceptionally bright 10 year old)? Am I right that we shouldn’t be teaching her to advocate for censorship?
What would you do in this situation?