August 7, 2008

Morality Police Go After Indiana Adult Store

I don't know about you, dear reader, but I like some privacy when I visit the porn store. The idea of my friends, family, employer, and co-workers knowing about it is not particularly appealing. I guess it is understandable that I am not impressed with the group of Indiana Christians taking photographs of porn store patrons and then posting them on a public website. Their goal is to drive customers away so the store has to close. This battle has been going on for three years.

The newspaper in which I found this story, The Indianapolis Star, described this as reflecting "the latest clash of small-town values, including a heaping serving of religious fervor, against what some here view as an increasingly hedonistic and dangerous world." Yes, but it is also a story about Christians attempting to force their morality on others.

The Christians recording license plates and photographing customers want to close the store. They do not want adults to have access to the material sold at this store. Why? They believe that what the store does is morally wrong. It offends their Christian sensibilities, and they do not trust other adults to make their own decisions. They would deny their neighbors this freedom.

Like all of us, these Christians certainly have a right to believe what they want. But why do they find it necessary to interfere with what others are doing? Why do they despise freedom?

Assuming that the Christians are not trespassing on private property, they have the right to hold their parking lot vigil. But what about intimidating customers by posting photos of them on a website specifically to humiliate them? Does this cross the line?

I love the fact that some people are visiting the store simply to annoy the Christian protesters. I would do the same if this was to happen in my community. I'd also make sure I was wearing an interesting t-shirt for their website. Protests like this can actually help the business, but I'd imagine that this is more likely in heavily populated areas.