SIR,—In all the correspondence one reads in the press about
obscene publications it seems to me that every- one is saying the same thing without coming to any conclusion.
Lolita, obviously, is disgusting in the sense that it portrays one of the most disgusting habits of our human race.
War (to take one of many potential examples) is another disgusting vice of mankind. Yet writers are permitted to describe it in every horrible detail. Cold- blooded murder (perhaps more disgusting than war) is the subject of countless detective stories.
Surely Parliament must decide between two simple. though controversial, policies, with their accompany- ing pros and cons.
1. Books, plays, etc., should be allowed to portray the ugly facts of life as they are. This would enable the innocent or gullible person of good character to avoid the pitfalls attendant upon ignorance.
2. Books, plays, etc., should portray the world as a Garden of Eden, where no one need believe in Original Sin nor take precautions against eccentric sinners. This would have the disadvantage of giving comfort to the already depraved in that, without saving them in any way, it would deliver more victims into their hands.
Myself, I am all for instructing the innocent and gullible in the facts of life. Unlike the distinguished Victorian judge. 1 see no need to prOtect from them- selves those who are already depraved.—Yours faith- fully, St. James' Club, 106 Piccadilly, W