IFAS | Freedom Writer | September/October 1997 | terry.html

Terry goes on tearing spree

New York, NY Claiming to be on a crusade against child porn, Operation Rescue founder and "Christian America" advocate Randall Terry has been leading a band of zealots into bookstores to tear pages out of a photography book. The books under attack are f ine art photographs by Jock Sturges.

James Dobson's ministry, Focus on the Family, while helping promote Terry's crusade, also distributes its own fact sheet about Jock Sturges, calling the artist's work "child porn books."

In the past month, vigilantes have struck two dozen book stores in more than eight cities. Several individuals have been arrested. Randall Terry hopes that the arrests will lead to the arrest and prosecution of the photographer, Jock Sturges, on child por nography violations.

Barnes & Noble, the world's largest bookseller, with 1,000 stores in the US, sent a memo to all its stores which ordered Jock Sturges' books to be kept under lock and key. When a Freedom Writer reporter sought out Mr. Sturges' books at the Ba rnes & Noble on the Upper West Side in New York, he was told that he could view the books only in the presence of a security guard. Then, a manager showed up with two books tucked under his arm. The manager expressed his dismay that James Dobson's Focus o n the Family would promote this sort of campaign. "We sell Dobson's books," he said.

While the Sturges books contain nudity, such as families playing volleyball at naturist camps, and people of all ages sunbathing. The photos are not sexual in nature; there is nothing pornographic about them. All of Sturges' work with nudes is done with i ndividuals and families who chose nudity as a lifestyle. Any photographs of minors are made with parental consent.

© 1998 Institute for First Amendment Studies, Inc.