"My work may be garbage but it's good garbage." Mickey Spillane
Without the free expression of ideas, even those that others and ourselves find objectionable, we cannot have a working democracy.
Passing judgments on each other on the basis of a single word lodged within our profiles, making erroneous decisions based upon a kneejerk reaction causes great injustices.
Rape fantasies, for instance, have had a long position in psychological texts and have been around in the literature and speculations of professionals since Freud. Even Freud, however, did not believe that the presence of the fantasy meant that the individual wished to be raped or commit rape. Instead, it was merely a symbolic representation of other needs and desires.
Incest, pedophilia, and rape have been part of myth, legend, and literature since the beginnings of time. Greek Tragedy revolves around it. The fact that the Greeks wrote about the subject so frequently did not mean that they supported it. The ancient Greeks were a very moralistic society and the presence of those three acts usually brought about a bad end for the one who committed them.
As Freud noted, the presence of a fantasy did not imply a desire to act upon them.
Our society seems less and less able to distinguish between sexual fantasy and sexual reality.
The members of fandom who wrote those fantasies about incest, rape, and pedophilia were not supporting those actions. They were merely writing out their personal sexual fantasies which diverged dramatically from their day-to-day reality. Freud would have understood it.
Fans are by and large a very literate group of people. It is normal to have sexual fantasies that are diametrically opposite to what we practice. That is why it is a fantasy. The expression of inner fantasies never reflect or find a physical expression beyond the lives that we live in real life.
A professional Dom can tell you a lot about the distance between fantasy and reality. Many of those who are bottoms in the bedroom are tops in the office. BDSM is one way of acting out a fantasy without harming anyone.
The much-maligned Gor novels were written by a psychiatrist. Just because John Norman wrote a long series of fetishistic fantasy novels did not mean that he wanted to or intended to tie up his patients and wife. It was a fantasy. His fantasy. And the fantasy of his readers.
Fantasy is not reality.
Because someone wishes to express what Freud would have would considered an Oedipal or Electra fantasy in the form of a pedophilic short story, does not mean that they are going to do it in real life. It is a fantasy. Freud believed that a child’s first, and swiftly sublimated, sexual fantasy was a fixation by the child on the parent. A large number of people marry someone who reminds them of their opposite gender parent in some way.
A fantasy often exists in dramatic juxtaposition to reality. Why fantasize about reality? We already have reality.
The only difference between those fan writers and Nabokov and Norman is that the fan writers are not published. Being published gives an air of credibility and public approval to Norman and Nabokov.
Just because someone writes a fantasy about going out and killing and eating a dog does not mean that his neighbors’ pets are in danger of being devoured.
Just because someone writes about the subject of incest, rape, and pedophilic affections, does not mean that they are going to be going out to commit those crimes. The writer knows the difference between the fantasy and the reality.
Fantasy is not and never has been reality.
If anything, writing those fantasies out has been a form of catharsis for the writer.
I have a terrible temper. Back when I was married, I would become so angry that I wanted to physically damage my spouse. What I did was take a walk or write it out in a story. Sometimes I bloodily murdered my spouse in my fiction. My ex is now in his early 60s, healthy and hale.
Fantasy is an escape valve. What we most often write about are things we would never do or approve of in real life.
Fantasy is not reality and reality is not fantasy.
A person who is forbidden to employ that escape valve of writing out the fantasy is far more likely to act on the thoughts than someone who actually expresses them.
At some point our society has to re-learn how to distinguish between the expression of a fantasy and the reality of life.