Last week, we ran a commentary about a recent court ruling that it's now illegal for companies like CleanFlicks and CleanFilms to "scrub" objectionable content from movies
Mark Moring's commentary, titled "No More Smut Editors?", agreed with the judge in principle. Moring's article didn't so much examine the legal technicalities of copyright law as it explored thephilosophical issues of the practice. Moring argued that such "scrubbing" is essentially tampering with art and an artist's creative vision. He also noted other ways for families to deal with movies that have objectionable content—including making the decision of not watching them at all
It was one of those topics that sent readers straight to their e-mail, because we received more than 100 letters on all sides of the issue. Here's a sampling of their replies:
So you think every film coming out of Hollywood is a piece of art needing the protection of a Renaissance painting? That's what filmmakers would like you to believe. If you were really thinking critically, you would recognize most films as unoriginal trash. "Teaching moment"? Sounds more like you're having a Senior Moment. I'm beginning to think the Christian mind is more than being watered down, it's melting down.
The CleanFlicks trend speaks to something about the evangelical culture. We demand to entertained (myself included). We're basically saying, "Give me movies and make them clean. I need stuff to watch." In reality, there is no form of entertainment we have to see. There is no must-see TV. If it hurts our Christian walk, if it violates our purity, get rid of it.
Your argument about maintaining the artistic integrity of the films becomes specious when I think about how, for movies, ...1
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