Over the past few days, about a half-dozen FB friends posted their approval of the above image on my wall. No one was crude; a couple of variations of "Wow"' and one very foretelling comment referenced Bill Clinton's famous definition of "is,is" for what is sex and what is not.
Pretend you are 6 years old. What would you, an innocent child imagine?
A white woman with long hair and a black man with a tattoo are hugging, and they aren't wearing any clothes. Oh, and a tall white man is busy taking a shower in the background, and he doesn't see them. So, a child might ask, why are they hugging in the bathroom? Why is the man holding the lady's leg up? Is she hurt? Is he helping her to use the potty? Is he crying on her shoulder?
Sex would not be the question.
Isn't it only a person who already understands the range of physical intimacies that humans have with each other who would be able to see the suggestion of the image? There is no anatomical body part that alludes to something forbidden. There is no facial expression showing orgiastic delight. The bodies are not in throws of passionate tension. Their pelvises are not in a bump and grind. They are relaxed. They are beginning an embrace, even slightly clumsily one could say; he is helping her and she is leaning on his suport.
My FB images protections had been set so that only friends and their friends could view them. And FB's rules disallow any child under the age of 13 to have a FB account. A 13 year old, hopefully knows about the basics of sexuality. Yes, he or she would know that the image was evoking a sensual moment. They'd certainly be curious. And maybe bored.
If a youth truly wants to see sex this image is a poor choice. A click of the remote, a glimpse at the supermarket check out, or perusing a plethora of other online options would show them the get-down- and dirty in seconds. If Facebook was truly concerned about kids, it would create a Facebook Youth opt-in, a site for kids and their families with features specific for those families that want g-rated content.
It is the media and the religious charlatans, and our focused obsessions with titillation and the commericalization of sex, rather than seeing the beauty of its complexities, of its sensualities, which makes this type of image subject to Facebook's terms of removal. (Like hate and violence, that the word sex is often grouped with, sexuality and its perceptions are considered social network aka societal contraband.)
How potent your sex is!
Meanwhile, as Facebook shouts "Warning " when they really mean "Disabled," which is the more abusive to you? A multi-billion dollar company that fails to be be clear with its words, that refuses to allow time-dated information or vague description of the image, so that the person can possibly defend what they posted, or is it the offense of an image that shows the side views of two people, without clothes, in embrace?
Personally, I'd rather the children and young teens that I know, and my future grand children and extended relatives, live in a world where they know adults protect them with sexual guidance and an ethics of honesty, over corporate-faux moralistic protectionism that in reality continues the charade of society hiding truths.
What about you?