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Naked Case of Censorship at Rossmoor
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Nudity no longer allowed

 

in the dressing room

 

of Del Valle pool

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Surprised to hear this? Imagine how surprised I was to see a Rossmoor employee - a personal trainer, a lifeguard - tear down a poster from the bulletin board in the men’s locker room. His reason? The poster contained a picture showing nude women.

 

What? Had someone posted pornography on that bulletin board? Was the poster a personal ad from a prostitute?

 

No! It was a movie poster! It was a flyer announcing an upcoming movie in the Freethinkers Film Festival. The movie is “The Magdalene Sisters” nominated 25 times for honors including the Alexander Korda Award for Best British Film. It won the “Golden Lion” for “Best Film” at the Venice Film Festival 2002. (See the poster below.)

 

That movie graphic below appeared on the poster I put up on the locker room bulletin board, and so did another much smaller picture. Those with weak hearts had better not see it, for this picture will shock you; it will traumatize you! You will shriek with horror. Some may roar with laughter but still, fellow residents, I cannot show it to you.  

 

What? You insist you want to see the picture? It is only a scene from the movie. Go see the movie itself – that is, if our censors will allow us. For their next move may be to put a stop to its scheduled screening (Monday, July 26, 1:00 PM) at Peacock Hall!

 

Yes, the people with a mentality that will tear down a movie poster from a bulletin board are the people who will prevent us from entering the theater to see the movie.

 

If the lifeguard felt there was a question about the poster he needed only to take it down and bring it to his supervisor. She then should have called me. It is well known around here that I conduct three film festivals simultaneously – the Shakespeare Film Festival, the Opera/Ballet Film Festival and the Freethinkers Film Festival. I am constantly putting posters on bulletin boards all around our community.

 

But this poster was not just taken down and carried to the pool office. Please note the manner in which this poster was removed. It was confiscated from the bulletin board and destroyed – crushed in the hand of our Rossmoor employee! And to add insult to injury, he put another poster in its place - a very slick poster advertising a commercial affair outside of Rossmoor!

 

We do not have room enough for posters announcing Rossmoor events and this guy will post some profit-making deal having nothing whatsoever to do with Rossmoor. The question arises: does this Rossmoor employee have a connection with this outside commercial enterprise? If so this would be a blatant conflict of interest - taking advantage of his position as a Rossmoor employee for private gain with an outside organization. And doing so at the expense of a legitimate Rossmoor organization! This is grounds for dismissal in my opinion. And I will seek professional opinion, legal opinion.

 

This employee knew he did wrong, for he blushed with shame and guilt when I caught him.

 

Well, folks: we live here. This is our home, these are our clubhouses, and the bulletin boards publicize events of our organizations. The employees of Rossmoor work for us, they do not rule over us. What - shall our grandchildren command us? Will they tell us what pictures we may not see? Are we not old enough to decide for ourselves?

 

These employees come and go but we are here for ever. They all move on, but we do not move; we are here for the rest of our lives. And while we are alive we will control our own lives. We will not let presumptuous young employees dictate to us.

 

The irony is that soon after - that very evening - I saw at Peacock Hall the movie “The Last Station.” It had a very explicit sex scene. And many of the movies shown there contain such scenes. Again I ask if these censors will attempt to shut down our movie theater. Brian of the Recreation Department may have something to say about that. In fact, I am sending this paper to Brian, to Maureen at the Rossmoor News, to Kelly in Administration who oversees posters on our bulletin boards. I am sending it to Warren Salmons the Rossmoor CEO, to the Rossmoor Chat Room Bulletin Board (uncensored!), and to the president of the Atheist/Agnostic Group of Rossmoor, sponsor of the Freethinkers Film Festival. I will also post it on my “Gordon Gazette” which goes out to 200 people.

 

And I will send it along by email to all the 662 people in my Contacts list, those that I feel will be interested.

 

I shall ask all these people if they will consent to censorship at Rossmoor - if we will permit an employee to infringe upon our rights.

 

For what is truly obscene – a movie picture of a few nude women abused in an Irish penal institution, or a violation of the free speech guarantee in the First Amendment of the Constitutional of the United States?

 

 

Gene Gordon

Golden Rain Road

 

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