U.S. Attorney General Alberto Gonzales has his priorities wrong and should declare war on child pornography, not legal adult entertainment as he did recently, the Association of Adult Sites Advocating Child Protection and the Free Speech Coalition said today.
“Why is he wasting limited government resources on trying to prove legal adult entertainment is obscenity when there is so much work to be done on combating child pornography?” asked ASACP Executive Director Joan Irvine.
Irvine said that instead of alienating and prosecuting the adult entertainment industry, Gonzales could be working with the industry to eliminate the scourge of child pornography. Irvine said the adult industry has taken a strong stand against child pornography, noting that many industry movers and shakers have funded ASACP during the development of its sophisticated spidering and monitoring systems and the automation of its hotline.
Michelle L. Freridge, executive director of the Free Speech Coalition, an adult industry advocacy group, echoed Irvine’s comments.
“Instead of pouring tax dollars down the drain to harass legitimate businesses that create legal adult entertainment for consenting adults, Gonzales should be investing his time, funding, and staffing in the prosecution of illegal child pornography,” Freridge said. “In keeping with our long-standing policy condemning the sexual abuse of children, FSC offers a reward of up to $10,000 for information leading to the arrest and conviction of persons creating or trafficking in child pornography.”
Since 1996 ASACP’s mission has been to make a difference in the battle against child pornography on the Internet, Irvine said. Its hotline receives more than 5,000 reports of suspected child pornography per month and sends URLs of over 250 validated child porn sites (called “Red Flag Reports”) to the FBI, the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, and state Attorney General offices.
Despite considerable progress in combating child porn, Gonzales’ office remains under intense pressure from anti-porn groups to prosecute the legal adult industry.
For instance, while Andrew Oosterbaan, head of the Justice Department's Child Obscenity & Obscenity Section, was responsible for over 200 arrests of child porn producers and users as part of 2001's Operation Avalanche, he was condemned by the ultra-right-wing Family Research Council on March 1 as “anything but aggressive ... prosecuting only a few, mostly insignificant cases” against legal adult producers.
Irvine will be speaking on this topic at the next FSC meeting at the Warner Center Marriott in Woodland Hills, California on Thursday, March 17th, at 5:30pm. To RSVP contact Neva at FSC 818.348.9373.