Magazine article The Spectator

Banned Wagon

Magazine article The Spectator

Banned Wagon

Article excerpt

HORROR has greeted the decision of W.H. Smith to recommence stocking girlie magazines, which it removed from its shelves five years ago after campaigning by women's groups. Although there has been no official government word on the matter, one Cabinet minister, Clare Short, has privately condemned the decision, and other MPs have weighed in with highminded objections.

What is remarkable about the antipornography lobby is that its fury seems to be directed solely at pictures of women. The advent of large numbers of gay magazines has passed without comment. But then it is not public decency that concerns the likes of Clare Short; it is the supposed exploitation of women. There is a brand of feminism which cannot tolerate the idea that any woman could possibly wish to earn her crust by posing nude. Therefore, girlie magazines ought to be banned in order to save these wretched souls from humiliating themselves. …

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