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" The songs of our ancestors

are also the songs of our children "

The Druid Way

Baring Witness

April 5th, 2009

As I write about the use of the body as a vehicle for protest in my next book, I find myself increasingly amazed at the oddity of the male psyche. This quote from the chapter I’ve just written will give you a sense of what I mean, and then the film clip will present an interesting approach to trying to understand why some find war acceptable but nakedness or even semi-nakedness indecent:

Even in New Zealand there are some men who believe that simply the sight of a breast can be damaging. In 2005 a complaint was brought against the New Zealand Broadcasting Authority for a 6pm news item that revealed for six seconds a topless woman protesting against a march in support of ‘family values’ in Auckland. A Mr Watts claimed that the item had breached standards of good taste and decency and was inappropriate and disturbing for children. In rebuttal the TV channel responsible for the news item wrote: ‘It was as if you were telling us that you expect us to show the most awful terrorist atrocities (the attack on the twin towers, blood in the streets of Baghdad), the most awful crimes (school shootings, murder and rape) and introduce children to repellent concepts such as racism and intolerance – but ask us to shy away from the reality of a harmless topless protester taking part in a peaceful demonstration.’ The Broadcasting Authority did not uphold the complaint.