FRC Supports Obscenity Laws

Pat Trueman, Senior Legal Counsel for Family Research Council, Encourages

Tough, Constitutional Boundaries on Obscenity



Oct 21, 2005, 01:00 ET from Family Research Council

    WASHINGTON, Oct. 21 /PRNewswire/ -- Pornography distributors argued their
 case before a three-judge panel of the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on
 Wednesday. California-based Extreme Associates Inc. and its owners, Robert
 Zicari and wife, Janet Romano, had been indicted for distributing videos that
 depicted women being raped and having their throats slit.
     A U.S. District Attorney, Mary Beth Buchanan, indicted the company for
 violating federal law, but U.S. District Judge Gary L. Lancaster dismissed the
 indictment. Under federal law, an individual may view obscenity in the privacy
 of their home, but may not distribute obscene material in interstate commerce,
 as the defendants in this case did. Judge Lancaster, however, found the
 federal obscenity laws unconstitutional as applied in this case. Ms. Buchanan
 brought an appeal. A decision is not expected for several months.
     Patrick Trueman, senior legal counsel for the Family Research Council
 released the following statement:
 
     "The lower court's ruling that dismissed the indictment was without any
 basis in law. Judge Lancaster appears to be another activist federal judge who
 thinks he has the power to fashion law to his liking. The U.S. Supreme Court
 has repeatedly upheld federal obscenity laws and has given no indication that
 it will change its position on the matter."
     "Judge Lancaster's ruling relies on Lawrence v. Texas in 2003, which held
 state consensual sodomy laws unconstitutional, in part because they are based
 on morality.  Judge Lancaster's opinion citing freely from the Lawrence case
 indicates that morality is no basis for law.  One can only imagine what our
 country will look like if all laws based on morality are held
 unconstitutional."
 
     Patrick Trueman is the former head of the Justice Department's Child
 Exploitation and Obscenity section from 1987 through 1992.
 
 

SOURCE Family Research Council
    WASHINGTON, Oct. 21 /PRNewswire/ -- Pornography distributors argued their
 case before a three-judge panel of the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on
 Wednesday. California-based Extreme Associates Inc. and its owners, Robert
 Zicari and wife, Janet Romano, had been indicted for distributing videos that
 depicted women being raped and having their throats slit.
     A U.S. District Attorney, Mary Beth Buchanan, indicted the company for
 violating federal law, but U.S. District Judge Gary L. Lancaster dismissed the
 indictment. Under federal law, an individual may view obscenity in the privacy
 of their home, but may not distribute obscene material in interstate commerce,
 as the defendants in this case did. Judge Lancaster, however, found the
 federal obscenity laws unconstitutional as applied in this case. Ms. Buchanan
 brought an appeal. A decision is not expected for several months.
     Patrick Trueman, senior legal counsel for the Family Research Council
 released the following statement:
 
     "The lower court's ruling that dismissed the indictment was without any
 basis in law. Judge Lancaster appears to be another activist federal judge who
 thinks he has the power to fashion law to his liking. The U.S. Supreme Court
 has repeatedly upheld federal obscenity laws and has given no indication that
 it will change its position on the matter."
     "Judge Lancaster's ruling relies on Lawrence v. Texas in 2003, which held
 state consensual sodomy laws unconstitutional, in part because they are based
 on morality.  Judge Lancaster's opinion citing freely from the Lawrence case
 indicates that morality is no basis for law.  One can only imagine what our
 country will look like if all laws based on morality are held
 unconstitutional."
 
     Patrick Trueman is the former head of the Justice Department's Child
 Exploitation and Obscenity section from 1987 through 1992.
 
 SOURCE  Family Research Council