Instead, Republicans and social conservatives found themselves praising federal control of schools and libraries—something that's been anathema since long before the Contract with America.
Democrats, including White House staff, found themselves pushing for "community discretion" over federal involvement, then backtracking to support "technology protection measures."
Even since the act's passage (it was quietly tucked into a budget bill in the last days of 2000), praise has come from some unusual corners. Boston Globe technology columnist Hiawatha Bray noted that his temptation to "repeat the usual clichÉs about narrow-minded prudes and the sacred right of free expression" ebbed when he imagined his two young daughters "waiting to use the Internet computer at the library, while some guy in a raincoat amuses himself."
Similarly, eCompany Now magazine (a spinoff of Fortune) called it "one of the most sensible pieces of … legislation" on Internet porn. "It could balance the public's desire for access to the Internet with the need to protect children from the more extreme stuff that's out there," said an editorial.
And who was against the legislation? Strangely enough, that list included the largest of the filtering software companies. Susan Getgood, a vice president of Surfcontrol (which owns both CyberPatrol and SurfWatch programs), criticized ...1
Already a CT subscriber? Log in for full digital access.
Have something to add about this? See something we missed? Share your feedback here.
Subscribe to Christianity Today and get access to this article plus 60+ years of archives.
- Home delivery of CT magazine
- Complete access to articles on ChristianityToday.com
- Over 120 years of magazine archives plus full access to all of CT’s online archives
- Learn more