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American Family Association's Going After Sears Again for Porn

American Family Association's Going After Sears Again for Porn

JESUSLAND—Don't you just know something fun is waiting at the bottom of a web page that starts out like this?:

"The graphics on this page were take [sic] directly from www.sears.com website on July 9, 2012, and provided as proof of what Sears sells.

 

"WARNING: They are explicit and graphic.

 

"Last year, Sears promised to stop selling these type products. In our subsequent monitoring of sears.com, AFA found that Sears resumed selling sexually explicit products.

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"WARNING: The images are explicit and graphic. 

 

"Scroll down to view.

 

 

 

 

 

"WARNING: You are about to see explicit graphics taken from sears.com website on July 9, 2012.  If you do not wish to see these images, close this page now.

 

 

 

 

 

"WARNING: The images are explicit and graphic. 

 

"Scroll down to view.

 

 

 

 

 

"WARNING: The images are explicit and graphic. 

 

"Scroll down to view."

Of course, if one were to click on the link, all one would find are two book covers—one for Naked: The Nude in America by Bram Dijkstra and the other Dearest Pet: On Bestiality by Midas Dekkers; three DVD covers—The Ultimate Busty Rhiannon and Fetish Rumble, both from Napali Video, and The Honey Lickers Sorority 2 from Amerotica—and one photo of a topless woman with her hands over her nipples that seems to be pure space-filler.

But hey, you need that stuff to make churchgoers and other sexual repressives read through to the end of your screed, no?

It seems that major big-box retailer Sears, which had promised the American Family Association 23 months ago, and then again in May 2011, and yet again this past May, that it would stop selling porn on its website, is up to its old tricks (read: doing business like any other sane retailer would) again, and the AFA is again doing what it does best: raising money by inflaming the fundamentalists' fear that they or their kids might log onto the Sears website to order—who knows?—a confirmation dress or bar-mitzvah suit and find themselves face to face with videos of hubby-humping hookers or some-such.

"But that's not the worst of it," charged AFA head Tim Wildmon. "Sears also sells books on bestiality and zoophilia. Titled 'Dearest Pet, On Bestiality' and 'Bestiality and Zoophilia: Sexual Relations with Animals,' these books are 'how to' manuals for people who want to have sex with animals. I don't want to be too graphic, but they contain descriptions, drawings and sketches beyond belief."

We'd wonder what Wildmon's been drinking—he's probably a teetotaler—since all of the reviews of Dekker's book, which was originally published in Dutch and translated in 2000, stress its lack of eroticism. The LA Weekly called it, "never prurient, but it bears the unmistakable flair of a true enthusiast," while customer reviews on Amazon.com note, "[It] certainly it is not a 'how to' book, nor is it an erotic or lascivious tract. Even its many illustrations lack eroticism. The book leaves most things involving the actual coupling up to the reader's imagination ... so if the potential reader is seeking a perverse little jolt, this book is not the way of obtaining it," while another summarizes, "If you are looking for a book to simply explain the 'How to's' (although it does contain some sexual details) this is not it BUT if you are looking for a book that will stimulate your mind, is full of profound theories as to the history and culture differences that bestiality conveys around the world, look no further."

Similarly, Bestiality and Zoophilia is a collection of articles from Anthrozoös, the journal of the International Society for Anthrozoology, and contains chapters headed, "Sexual relations with animals (zoophilia): An unrecognized problem in animal welfare legislation" and "Bestiality: Petting, 'human rape,' sexual assault, and the enigma of sexual interactions between humans and non-human animals." In other words, another scientific work about bestiality, also not a "how-to" manual.

"Recently, AFA twice asked for a face-to-face meeting (at our expense), so we could share our concerns in person," Wildmon continues. "Both times, Sears specifically said its people did not want to meet with AFA. Unless Sears hears from you, the company will continue to sell hardcore pornography." 

Wildmon's solution: "Make a personal phone call to Sears, so your concerns are clearly understood. Call Sears' corporate headquarters directly and urge Chairman Edward Lampert to keep his company's word to stop selling pornography." And of course, a phone number is provided, as well as the number for Sears PR department—and they even tell you what option to pick from the electronic menu!

Sears, of course, is between the proverbial "rock and a hard place" on this: Their sales have been way off, thanks to the (Republican-sponsored) recession, and porn always sells (though we're unclear how many of Sears online customers would think to search for it), so the AFA's campaign's main effect will likely be a slight decrease in Sears' overall sales.

On the other hand, it's gravy for the AFA, whose loyal followers will be reinforced in their thinking that the fundamentalist religious pro-censorship organization is actually doing something worthwhile for the "culture."






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Mark Kernes

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