Same job, different uniform.

Sunday, February 19, 2006

All is Fair in Love and Photography

Public nudity offends me. Call me what you like; I care nothing for modern taste as it relates to the presentation of the human body.

And nothing is more public than the cover of a magazine. GQ, for example, has a circulation over 800,000, which does not include thousands of book-buyers that wander past the magazine rack in B & N on any given afternoon.

Jennifer Aniston posed topless on the cover of a recent GQ. Kiera Knightly and Scarlett Johansson bare all on the cover of this month's Vanity Fair.

"Do not stir or awaken love until it pleases." A verse of Holy Scripture tucked a few times into a tiny addition to the 66.

That is my argument against public nudity and certain kinds of artistic expression. There is no denying the link between our bodies and our desires. The mighty, slumbering forces of Love and its accompanimentss are meant to be awakened in private. Far from this, modernity has brought them roaring to life then dragged them through the mire of human lust and complacency.

The injury to the soul by displays of public nudity is twice inflicted: on the spectator and on the subject. Waifs with vacant, sometimes mean expressions, silicon for breasts, in the posture of love-making, trading the simple virtue of modesty, that terribly passe concept, for the chance to model a pair of stilettos.

It is easy to forget that they are human beings, so much more than one-dimensional. They are no less immune to the effects of immodesty than we are by gaping at them.

UPDATE: The conversation has been improved upon here by Ms. Lane, here at South Dakota Politics and finally here. There are some excellent comments by readers as well.

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