Federal obscenity laws, for the most part, have not been enforced on any grand scale for the past ten years, but recently, a new case has emerged between the city of Pittsburgh and Janet Romano & Robert Zicari AKA Lizzie Borden and Rob Black of Extreme Associates, Inc.It may be dirty but is it legal?
When the case against Lizzie Borden and Rob Black was filed in Pittsburgh, a collective shudder coursed through the adult entertainment industry. Borden and Black, a husband and wife whose real names are Janet Romano and Robert Zicari, have set themselves up in the capitals of porn--offices in North Hollywood, residence in Northridge, warehouse studio in Van Nuys- -but they're actually outsiders within the industry, and their express purpose is to find taboos and exploit them. Not the taboos of society--the taboos of the porn industry. (And yes, they exist.) Whatever the huge porn factories refuse to do, Borden and Black thrive on. It's a niche business for fetishists- -most of their films involve subject matter that I can't even describe here--but it's lucrative enough to sell 20,000 copies of their most famous release, and Exhibit A for Ashcroft, a film called "Forced Entry."Obscenity Indictment Start of Justice Department Crackdown
The U.S. Supreme Court decided in 1973 that materials are obscene if they (1) appeal to the prurient interest, (2) are patently offensive, and (3) lack serious literary, artistic, political or scientific value in the view of an average, reasonable person applying contemporary community standards.
The questions for debate:
1. Do you believe that the materials being produced by Extreme Associates, Inc. should be legal or illegal. Please state your reasoning.
2. What is your opinion of the federal obscenity laws?