Maiden Voyages: January 2015

(Last Updated On May 11, 2016)

Happy New Year to all! I have been noticing during the last year that Pigtails in Paint has entered its “middle game”. For those who are unfamiliar with chess parlance, it is understood that the beginning and end of a game are relatively easy to analyze as opposed to the middle—with its myriad of possibilities. This site has begun to develop its character and be of particular service to its readers and yet its full purpose and destiny is not yet clear. For me personally, it is serving as a sounding board for me to address unresolved questions. In time, it is my hope that it will become a kind of definitive resource—although it cannot be said what form that will take.

New Addresses: By the time most of you read this, Pip Starr will have switched to a new email account. From now on, inquiries about his posts and other contributions to the site should be directed to Ron, Editor-in-Chief since he has final say on editorial decisions. In the next few days, Pigtails in Paint will be establishing a PayPal account to allow our supporters to financially contribute to our efforts. I will update this post with the details when everything is in place.

The Writing Team: In addition to the ongoing contributions of Pip, Ami and RJ, I am pleased that some new people with a wide range of backgrounds have added their voices as well. Thank you WCL, Christian and Susan Adler. I want to assure any prospective writers that I am a patient but frank writing coach and will edit all submissions for clarity and consistency with Pigtails’ philosophy, so please don’t feel intimidated about making a contribution.

Wish List: By now, I have accumulated a lot of promising leads with not enough information to proceed. I have now established a “Wish List” tab (under “Community”) with requests for more information on specific artists (or works of art) that need to be dug out before a proper post can be composed. Please check this periodically to see how you can help.

Lolicon and Japanese Law: I was pleased to break the ice, as it were, on the Lolicon phenomenon. So many readers have been helpful in filling in the gaps. In the course of acquiring some of these books, I noticed a heightened concern from Japanese sellers about a new law that took effect on July 15th. I had one of our legal researchers look into the matter so we would have a better idea what was going on.

Essentially, it is an amendment to the 1999 Act on Punishment of Activities Relating to Child Prostitution and Child Pornography,‭ ‬and the Protection of Children. The amendment prohibits possession of child pornography and the storage of electronic records of child pornography whereas the 1999 law focused only on production and distribution. The offense of possession is now punishable by imprisonment for up to one year or a fine of up to one million yen‭ (‬about US$10,000‭). Two other provisions extend the scope of the original act: 1) It is also now an offense to record a child secretly, not just forcing or instructing a child to pose. 2) Online service providers are given further incentive to cooperate with authorities in investigating and preventing the spread of such materials. No attempt has been made to clear up the ambiguity of how an intent to cause sexual arousal might be proved in a court of law. There is a one year grace period for potential offenders to get rid of anything that may now be in their possession; and some legitimate materials are bound to be destroyed in the course of Japanese citizens’ efforts to play it safe.

A Startling Discovery: The original intent of this site was to make a light-hearted exploration of the little girl mystique. In time, I began to realize that the items that stirred controversy were indicative of a deeper problem in our society; and whatever forces were involved needed to be brought to light and subjected to rigorous scrutiny. One of the things I began to notice is how much more adamantly men (as opposed to women) reacted to images of nude children and children in intimate contexts. When I finally worked my way to a closer examination of the history of gender issues, I realized that this site, quite inadvertently, has been taking a feminist stance. In the political sphere, the term “feminism” has taken a beating the past couple of decades, but its core meaning should resonate with any self-confident person of good heart. Because women are different from men and children are different from adults, the dominant political forces have managed to treat them like second-class citizens—in both sly and overt ways. Continued enforcement of that paradigm is intolerable and Pigtails will continue to serve to educate readers about the nobility of all human beings, no matter how different they may be from us.

2 thoughts on “Maiden Voyages: January 2015

  1. Men tend to view the human body as sexual, while women are more often involved in the bodily care of small children (washing, changing diapers). That is why men tend to be more uneasy with child nudity.
    Feminism is a big word that has many different meanings, sometimes conflicting ones (compare Andrea Dworkin with Gayle Rubin, for instance).

    • Thank for for this, but I think it more instructive to reveal how this situation developed from an evolutionary perspective. Even if gender roles reversed overnight, there are still plenty of unconscious mechanisms that would sabotage that development. This is a complicated situation and will take time to explain bit by bit. I am not prepared, nor would it be useful at this time, to spell out a kind of dissertation about the paradigm of gender roles. I have offered some leads through Sut Jhally’s work and Richard Wrangam proposes the development of cooking as an early reinforcement of this trend (Catching Fire: How Cooking Made Us Human).
      On the other hand, feminism is very easy to define when not confounded with distracting rhetoric. Yes, there have been pundits who have slanted it one way or the other. Much of the pro-feminist discussion has to do with the notion of equality and then the inevitable backlash response that men and women are really different. Yes, men and women are different but I think any thoughtful and compassionate person would say that men and women should be treated fairly. All human beings, regardless of gender or race or talent, deserve to have that individual experience of the joy of being alive. -Ron

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