Republican Bill Would Ban the Journal of Urology2008 does not just bring a presidential election, but many elections in Congress too. Every member of the House of Representatives, and about a third of United States senators, must run for re-election or retire this year. The Republicans are busy trying to convince Americans that they ought to be given majority control of Congress again, just a couple of years after they lost it. Yet, Republican Congresman Paul Broun of Georgia seems to be working overtime to remind Americans of why the Republicans were kicked out in the first place. He's busy promoting a series of ridiculous, and yet malicious, pieces of legislation that only a far right extremist could apologize for. For instance, while the American economy plunges into recession, and perhaps even toward a depression, while American soldiers continue to be killed in Iraq, and while Americans suffer from record high gasoline prices, what is Representative Broun doing? He's trying to pass a law that would outlaw American soldiers from buying Playboy Magazine. Soldiers can be trained to fire guns, and can be sent into the path of bombs and bullets, but they aren't to be allowed to look at pictures of pretty women? Sadly, it isn't just Paul Broun who supports this nonsense. He's got 16 other Republican members of Congress to sign on as co-sponsors to support the bill, the Military Honor and Decency Act. Why? These Republicans in Congress are counting on a certain segment of their constituents who just can't handle thinking about sex. Anything that has to do with sex, they're against... ...even if it bans the Journal of Urology. Yes, Paul Broun's bill is so poorly crafted that it would ban the medical Journal of Urology on military bases. Section 2 of the bill, entitled, CLARIFICATION OF PROHIBITION ON SALE OR RENTAL OF SEXUALLY EXPLICIT MATERIAL ON MILITARY INSTALLATIONS, contains the following definition of what is to be considered sexually explicit material, and therefore banned:
"(1) The term `sexually explicit material’ means– `(A) an audio recording, a film or video recording, or a print publication with visual depictions, produced in any medium, the principal theme of which depicts or describes nudity or sexual or excretory activities in a lascivious way; or `(B) if the print publication is a periodical, it regularly features or gives prominence to nudity or sexual or excretory activities.’; and"Excretory activities. Subsubsection B of subsection 1 of section 2 of this bill is pretty clear. It says that any periodical publication that gives prominence to excretory activities, such as those that urologists deal with, comes under the terms of the Military Honor and Decency Act, and cannot be purchased by anyone on a military base. So, Paul Broun's bill would ban the purchase of the Journal of Urology by anybody on a military base. You may think that this is a joking matter, but consider this: When hundreds of thousands of soldiers are shipped overseas, they're shipped along with military doctors, and for good reason. A large number of those soldiers, even if they never are wounded in battle, will fall seriously ill. That's just how life is. People get sick. Oftentimes, the illness will be urological in nature. That's why there need to be physicians in the military who specialize in urology. However, if military urologists can't get a hold of professional journals in their specialty, they aren't going to be providing good care to soldiers who are ill. Think about it. How is an American military urologist working in Iraq supposed to get a hold of the Journal of Urology if it's illegal to purchase it from a military base? Is that urologist supposed to go find an Internet Cafe somewhere in Sadr City, and place an order there, so American law won't be broken? Paul Broun's bill may pretend to be about "honor" and "decency", but the fact is that, if passed, it would put American soldiers at risk.
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