Hey, remember when we told you back in May about Canadian customs stopping comics at the border because they were offensive to some theoretical person who even if they existed in the first place would probably never hear of these comics, let alone read them, and if they did somehow, it still wasn’t the fault of the artist?
Yeah, they’re at it again, and this time somebody might actually go to jail.
An unidentified American man was stopped at the Canadian border and had his personal electronics searched, because there might be terrorists in them or something. The customs official found a doujinishi of “Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha”, decided it was child pornography, and now this guy is facing charges of owning child pornography and trying to import it into Canada.
The key word: “decided”. At issue is whether a government official has the right to look at artwork and decide for an entire country whether or not it’s a crime. The case is firing up as we speak: the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund and the Canadian Comic Legends Legal Defense Fund are stepping in to help this guy out.
The key thing to remember about this case, regardless of how it goes, is that the issue is whether or not governments have the right to decide for their citizens what “offensive” is. Also, while we’re at it, maybe we could establish that if there’s not a bomb in it, customs officials don’t have the right to go poking into people’s computers? Just saying.
[ via io9 ]