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June 1994


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"John G. Thomas" <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
Film and TV Studies Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>
Sun, 12 Jun 1994 16:54:38 -0700
text/plain (72 lines)
On Sun, 12 Jun 1994, Constance Atwill wrote:
> John, I don't disagree with your position on censorship as regards to
> language, per se - but the wholemeal,
        Constance, I try not to get involved in these kinds of
conversations, but I did open my big mouth(or keyboard, I suppose.)
        This is NOT a loaded question, but do you really think it was
because of Thelma & Louise that the truckers are keeping cool?  (I wonder
how many truckers have SEEN T&L?)
> calling his partner a 'dyke' serving some artistic purpose, or is it
> aimed at a laugh/shock for entertainment's sake?
        I think its interesting that you only gave me two choices as to
my motivation, or the character's motivation, for making the statement,
"She's a dyke."
        For instance, why is it what "he" says that is so wrong?  Or in
my case, why did the censor object only to what HE said?  Remember, I'm
the one on the end of the censorship spear, in this case?   You know, I
looped replacement words/lines for any of the "F" words in the film.
Oddly enough, they left some of them in, but removed the word dyke and
replaced it with the word gay.
        True, many of the hardline feminists espouse lesbianism as sort
of a "badge of honor", and that's okay with me as long as they keep their
distance from me as well.  That means that I don't want them to impose
their beliefs on me, or my daughter for instance.  But they did.  And
they got away with it too.  I want her to grow up and be able to make her
OWN decisions, not what some narrow minded, self-conscious PC twit
EXPECTS her to say.
        I do agree with some of your ideas, I think.  But PC is so, so,
well its so STUPID.  And what happened in my film is a good example of
that stupidity.  You seem like a very smart woman, and I know you
probably realized the PC joke early on.  But there are so many thousands
of fools out there that accept it at face value.  They live in a Phil
Donahue sort of world where everything makes them.
        I'm aware that a lot of people have seen my films, and that means
that I have to accept a responsibility to the audience.  I have to be
honest with them, no matter what.  PC is one of Letterman's stupid per
tricks!  But nothing has made me feel more responsible, more driven to be
honest, than having a child.  She's 12 now, shes seen all the films(is
usually my "date" to the premieres!), and I always make sure they will be
something she would appreciate.
        From a purely societal POV, we end up where we are now: a society
where everyone has "rights."  EVERYONE has rights(except perhaps white
males)!  Trouble is, when everyone has rights, then nobody has manners
anymore.  The religious right is painted by the liberals to be a bunch of
controlling fruitcakes.  Yet the religious right doesn't want to control
anyone, they just don't want others to force them to accept values they
don't believe in.  When Patricia Ireland says that: "Any kind of sex with
a man is rape,"  you can understand how they feel.  See what I mean?  If
you don't agree that gays and lesbians should be able to adopt children
your branded a homophobe.  There is no middle ground here, as there is no
middle ground in PC in general.  When it starts to creep into my work, I
get real upset.  The fact that your rethorical question only gave me two
options makes that clear to me.  Its either this, or that.  No other
option or even inbetween anymore.
        Enough of my rantings....It was a pleasure to talk with you.
---------------->from John G. Thomas ([log in to unmask]) <-------------------