Feeds

Sex in the Noughties: How was it for you?

Politically correct mainly

New hybrid storage solutions

Time to spank hit back

When it comes to charting the sexual history of this decade, perhaps two events will stand out. The first relates to a report that slightly pre-dates New Labour’s coming to power. In 1995, the Law Commission tentatively suggested that unless serious social harm was being done, sado-masochistic acts ought not to be the subject of criminal law.

Their proposal was duly considered by SORT – and duly shelved. For when it came to issues of consent, the Law Commission was interested in the question of when it was permissible for an individual to say Yes – without expecting the heavy hand of the state to intervene. Not so SORT, for whom the central questions of consent were about when the state should back an individual’s right to say No.

Both questions need to be addressed: but under New Labour, the second has taken priority.

Last observation, though, to Law Professor Stephen Guest. A recent debate in the Lords considered whether to permit a "freedom of expression" exemption in respect of a proposed new law on "stirring up homophobic hatred".

On behalf of the government, opposing the freedom of speech clause, Justice minister Claire Ward stated that the problem with having such a clause was that people would use that "freedom of speech" clause to attack gays.

Professor Guest writes: "It was clear she had no grasp of the fundamental importance of freedom. That stance, that freedom of speech was a hindrance to freedom, will eventually backfire. If you are claiming legitimacy for your view that the rights to freedom of gays, of minority religions, and of racial minorities is fundamental, as I do, it is not in your interest to try to achieve this by attacking the idea of freedom in general."

In the end, that may well serve as an epitaph for the entire decade when it comes to revision to the laws on sexuality: on the one hand, an acitivity that is being practiced in more and more outlandish ways by individuals whose primary motivation is about having fun; on the other, a protectionist government, whose gut reaction to this situation - as many others - is a desire to impose a level of top-down nit-picking control which is in the end wholly at odds with that activity. ®

Security for virtualized datacentres

More from The Register

next story
Found inside ISIS terror chap's laptop: CELINE DION tunes
REPORT: Stash of terrorist material found in Syria Dell box
Show us your Five-Eyes SECRETS says Privacy International
Refusal to disclose GCHQ canteen menus and prices triggers Euro Human Rights Court action
Radio hams can encrypt, in emergencies, says Ofcom
Consultation promises new spectrum and hints at relaxed licence conditions
Heavy VPN users are probably pirates, says BBC
And ISPs should nab 'em on our behalf
Former Bitcoin Foundation chair pleads guilty to money-laundering charge
Charlie Shrem plea deal could still get him five YEARS in chokey
NORKS ban Wi-Fi and satellite internet at embassies
Crackdown on tardy diplomatic sysadmins providing accidental unfiltered internet access
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile
Data demand and the rise of virtualization is challenging IT teams to deliver storage performance, scalability and capacity that can keep up, while maximizing efficiency.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.