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Thought Police: 1, Citizens: 0.

Turns out that it's now illegal in the US to have disgusting fantasies... even when you explicitly state that the online chat you're having about said fantasy is just that: Only a fantasy.

From the Slate.com article:

In the government's version of the facts, Valle had been working up "practical and strategic" plans to kidnap, rape, torture, kill, and eat several women, including his own wife. One of his Google searches shows he was looking for audio clips of knives being sharpened, utensils clanking, or whatever else might serve to whet his violent appetite.

The prosecuting attorney - a representative of the US government, of us all - said in closing statements, "That's not a fantasy that's OK."

Clearly, this guy's fantasies are creepy as hell. But is having creepy fantasies something we should make illegal? Should we put people in jail for having bad thoughts? If so, where do we draw the line for what we consider okay? And who gets to decide that? Do you want someone with his own repressed fantasies deciding yours aren't okay because he feels guilty about his dark desires? Or someone who's so pure as to think oral sex isn't okay? Do you think you've never had a fantasy that someone, somewhere in power would find disgusting?


The Thought Police are here. Time to start practicing your mind-block jingle.

Chris

Comments

( 12 comments — Leave a comment )
(Deleted comment)
mckitterick
Mar. 14th, 2013 08:14 pm (UTC)
I agree, that I'd like to know more, overall. But the fact that people can no longer feel safe writing about their fantasies, and searching for information on how to make them sound more realistic, is creepier than this guy.

I've known people whose fantasy lives would be seen by others as twisted, others who would like to see them prosecuted for being dirty and wrong. So what if two people work out an abduction fantasy online and even act it out if no one is actually harmed by it? Geez, this is where "slippery slope" gets me worried - especially when the majority are okay with such kinds of prosecutions.
(Deleted comment)
mckitterick
Mar. 15th, 2013 07:22 pm (UTC)
Exactly - and the vast majority of those aren't going to harm anyone.
clevermanka
Mar. 14th, 2013 07:45 pm (UTC)
This does not bode well for the slashfic community. At all.
mckitterick
Mar. 14th, 2013 08:11 pm (UTC)
A-yep. And writers of SF/F/H? Should we start worrying about what we search for while researching our work?
carmy_w
Mar. 15th, 2013 05:09 pm (UTC)
This was exactly what I was thinking. Any murder mystery writer who really does extensive research had better keep a "fry the hard drive" button set up on his computer (see also-Rick Castle).

Sorry-I know it's not funny, but it also sounds EXACTLY like a script from "Castle!"

Which, in a way, makes it even less funny. *sigh*
mckitterick
Mar. 15th, 2013 07:23 pm (UTC)
A-yep. *sigh*
(Deleted comment)
mckitterick
Mar. 14th, 2013 08:10 pm (UTC)
Good points, Lane. Using police resources as part of his fantasy really ought to be illegal. But it makes me more than a little worried that the thrust of the prosecution was, "These are not okay thoughts!"
supergee
Mar. 15th, 2013 10:09 am (UTC)
At least they were his own fantasies. There are people doing time for going along with fantasies cooked up by undercover cops.
mckitterick
Mar. 15th, 2013 07:23 pm (UTC)
There's that, too....
( 12 comments — Leave a comment )