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Snuff Films And Videos Should Be Banned


Snuff Films And Videos Should Be Banned

Recently a gruesome murder was committed in Montreal Canada where the perpetrator, a 29 year old self professed Gay Porn actor and model killed and dismembered another man. The crime was apparently filmed and uploaded to the internet in an act of extreme narcissism. The act of showcasing his crime was not done in anger or defiance of society but rather, it was done as part of an underground gore pleasure culture called Snuff.

It maybe hard for some to believe but there are people out there who get pleasure from watching other people die violently. I have known of such material for some time but have never desired to view its most gruesome takes. I first became aware of such material some seven or eight years ago while browsing the net. Through curiosity I stumbled upon websites such as Ogrish and Goregasm that featured violent death photos and videos. While it was desensitizing and interesting material to see my moral compass guided me away instead of going deeper into it.

Today the offensive material that floats to the surfaces of society is just the tip of an iceberg of filth that appeals to an ever increasing group of narcissists and in some cases, psychopaths. They exist and function in an underground culture unknown to most. They could be your neighbor and you wouldn't know it. Why? They are our doctors, lawyers, and priests as well as the guy coming to fix our cable when it brakes down. You just can't tell by looking at or talking to someone what kind of sick fetish they might have.

Ironically, in this case involving the Montreal snuff murder, a Wisconsin Lawyer came forward after the news broke. He is currently giving interviews about how he saw the Snuff murder video online and how he tried to alert police in several cities but was brushed off. When asked why he was a member of such a site to begin with, his answer was quite vague. He simply says he had seen many Snuff videos and this one looked too real. Does that mean that he enjoys watching the fake or overly fake ones? This is precisely where the argument and subsequent defense of Snuff videos lies

It is believed that interest in Snuff films originated some 40 years ago when rumors circulated widely that convicted serial killer Charles Manson filmed the murders he committed. Hundreds of curious people all across the United States were duped into buying faked Snuff movies through underground sources. Over the years imitators have seized the opportunity to use the mystery and intrigue associated with Snuff to create a underworld industry. When done right it is very hard to tell if the scene of murder and disembowelment that you are watching is real.

The problem with Snuff is that art imitates life and vise versa. Individuals who enjoy watching gruesome scenes of bondage and murder may eventually crave to experience it for real, especially if those individuals has a mental condition that makes him or her unable to differentiate reality from illusion or feel empathy and remorse. In such circumstances those individuals may not be able to determine if what they are viewing is real or fake.

Is there a good reason why Snuff videos real or fake should not be banned in a civilized society? I posed this question to the Hub Pages community and the answers were unanimous. Although Snuff films are meant to be fake there is a tendency by the film makers to push the envelope. At the same time there is a tendency within the minds of the audience to demand more and more realness. Even the actor Charlie Sheen was once fooled by a Japanese Snuff film that he saw. Some might argue that Charlie Sheen is not a good actor but if an actor cannot determine the realness of a Snuff film then how is the law going to tell.

It is an established fact that authorities all over the world are contacted frequently regarding Snuff films, but just like the story of the Wisconsin lawyer the police in most cases choose to ignore the claims unless someone is reported missing. In this age of increasing crime and violence we do not need Snuff films complicating the work of law enforcement. Not when such films serve no value to society.


phil on April 19, 2014:

I do think snuff should be banned as quite rightly put earlier,,, " the mental state of the individual and" the today's world is a mess and again yes,, its all over the media in films,, SAW, HOSTEL, and many more,, the French film MARTYRS' (that was too much for me),, wow any way the search for realness's is just great of the human psychy,, and he want or should I say need for violence no matter what,, my ex's were in to scat and they fucked my life they were into sadistic horror films and bdsm,,, i would make a link,,,

Marc Hubs from United Kingdom on May 20, 2013:

Theres one thing in particular that comes to mind about this. In UK what is known as "happy slapping" is now illegal. "happy slapping" is the act of video recording a fight or assault taking place then sharing it with others. If this a crime in UK, then surely (real) snuff movies must be a crime also?

RighterOne from Chicago, Illinois - USA on May 20, 2013:

Guys, it seems pretty simple to me. It is the murder that is the crime, not the video. And that ONLY if the entire thing is done intentionally.

So banning the video will not prevent the crime from being committed. The reason these things occur in the first place is because our society is sick - and I mean the entire Earth - all of Humanity, or w/e...

We must realize that even as we are all individuals, we also live inside an Earthly collective - and like it or not, we are all linked through energies our scientists still poorly understand.

Regarding banning - anything, it should not be done. Just like w/ drugs or alcohol, it will only drive the activity into the black market and it will still be there, but part of the shadow economy. Declaring that murder is a crime, on the other hand, is a completely different story. There are two simple universal principles, according to which we COULD restructure our society - and by doing so eliminate the problem entirely, while leaving the film industry/community completely alone.

The principles are simple:

1. Any individual (or group of individuals), any property (physical objects of value), and any agreement (between two or more individuals) are to be considered 'sacred' and therefore any attempt to use force to disrupt any of these things is a crime in universal terms.

2. The use of force against these things is allowed if and only if an infringement on rule #1 is already taking place. The use of force is only allowed to stop the infringement or prevent further ones.

If you want to read about it in greater detail, visit my Hub


These are foot-notes for my HubNovel, and the principles are explained in greater detail under the (L) Law section...

Or, simply watch the original video that first introduced me to these rules. It's a bit long-winded (but worth the time, ultimately), however I still recommend my hub with its more condensed version.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedd... ~~~ Vid is here...

Anon on July 08, 2012:

After reading about a plethora of faux-snuff and extreme horrors, most notably A Serbian Film and the August Underground series, I'm convinced these films do nothing but eroticise extreme violence and sickening acts. There's no reason these films should be made, anybody who seeks to access that kind of material clearly has severe issues. I think the presentation of these events in a 'realistic' mockumentary style is even more dangerous. It's literally disgusting. Ban them all.

Josak from variable on June 04, 2012:

Well firstly that is not true possession of a class c drug (marijuana) is a crime, but stopping the production of something kills anyone's right to watch it, it's censorship pure and simple, making a real snuff film should be a crime (murder) but otherwise the life has no place interfering in the basic rights of citizens, those are not democratically decided, they are in the constitution and while they can technically be changed by referendum they never should be.

mintinfo (author) on June 04, 2012:

The bastard was arrested today http://ca.news.yahoo.com/official-canadian-murder-...

@ peeples, thanks for your input. Re the amazon ads, I intended to load books that provided info on Snuff but instead I got ads selling Snuff. I will remove it or input a different keyword.

@Josak In a democracy the people decide the laws. They do so by electing representatives/senators into a central government. The government then passes laws based on social consensus. If enough people do not like a law it can be repealed. All laws regulating everything in a society such as alcohol, tobacco, and prostitution is based on a consensus of ideals/ideology.

If enough people within a particular jurisdiction do not like Snuff they can lobby their governor or congressman to ban the making of Snuff within that jurisdiction. That does not stop people from watching it of-coarse. It is not about your right to watch whatever you like, it is about making it. Just like it is not against the law to smoke marijuana, the cultivation and distribution is illegal.

Peeples from South Carolina on June 04, 2012:

Oh yeah and I'd like to point out in case you didn't notice that your amazon ads directly support what you are against. So if one sells you will profit from what you claim to be against.

Josak from variable on June 04, 2012:

@ Mintinfo, it is not the job of society nor government to decide their acceptance of a sub culture it is the job of the individual, if the individual decides he does not like it he does not have to watch it.

@ Peeples, Precisely.

Peeples from South Carolina on June 04, 2012:

I think there is no comparing child porn to the fake snuff on the market. A child is not capable of making an informed decision. An adult actor in a "snuff" film knows what they are doing. Also there is a difference between a murderer uploading a video of him killing someone and a snuff video. I would love to have a link to this case you mentioned. Many murders have been uploaded to the internt for "bragging" purposes since the internet came around. This does not mean they are snuff films.

Where are we to draw the line and decide which fetish should be banned and what should not. Are you aware that there is a rape fetish and that many women sign up to do these fake rape videos? Should those be banned as well? Then what's next all S and M videos. Where is the line drawn. And what makes your fetish (yes I said yours because EVERYONE has one) any better than a rape fetish or murder fetish?

mintinfo (author) on June 04, 2012:

You are a good debater but the fact still remains, child pornography and gore is not a morally acceptable format of entertainment to propagate throughout a society. That is why they exist as a subculture. It is therefore the duty of a healthy society to decide their level of acceptance. So, here we are debating the issue and in the court of public opinion which one of our arguments will stand. No debate based on such a controversial topic as this should be left dormant, not in a dynamic society.

Josak from variable on June 03, 2012:

#1 Cocaine is illegal because people on cocaine have a much higher crime rate. Whether cocaine should be legal is another question entirely.

#2 I don't see any evidence that psychopaths or pedophiles have become emboldened. As for gay people yeah societal values have shifted and they are an accepted part of society, as shown by the fact that most people now support gay marriage, according to polling and as such they are feeling comfortable with expressing their views and not hiding their sexuality, personally I consider that good thing.

#3 "Snuff feeds an uncommon inhumane desire that is only present in some people." Who decides what is inhumane? I have been known to enjoy watching an action film, people die in those and we often celebrate the death of the antagonist does that make me inhumane? and so what if it is uncommon? freedom of speech is a right not dictated by the number of people who want a particular aspect of it. If I enjoy a show and not many other people do should it be banned?

Making child porn is a crime because it harms children, paying for child porn should be a crime because it provides incentive for the creation of more child pornography and because it funds the crime, watching it should not be a crime but is because many people don't understand the meaning of freedom.

Lastly, "Is there precedence to argue the morality of enjoying child porn in the privacy and comfort of ones own home? No!" well that is just completely wrong! The classical Greeks actually had philosophical debates on this matter but for a more concrete example look at the Marquee De Sade who as born in 1740 who wrote books in which the characters engaged in pedophilia, necrophilia and many other out of norm sex acts and actually portrayed them as good and the books were banned but achieved massive sales success in their time(and are still popular now)outselling every other book in France and many many people spoke out in support of the books being made legal and in the right to privacy and more importantly the right to choice. So given that, that particular argument falls apart.

mintinfo (author) on June 03, 2012:

1)Can you please explain to me why crack cocaine is a banned substance when there is no law saying people can't use it if they so desire. What I'm saying is that Snuff feeds an uncommon inhumane desire that is only present in some people.

2)I was very careful not to say the number of pedophiles and psychopaths in society is increasing. What I did say was that they have become emboldened and feel comfortable to act on their desires. Gays for instance, have always existed yet it is only recently that they are beginning to feel comfortable coming out of the closet. I am not putting psychopaths in the same category as Gays. I am simply comparing their acceptance in society from a moral standpoint.

3)Can you please explain to me why making, watching, and sharing child porn is an illegal activity. Ethics, right? Who is it harming? It harms the children right, because it is exploiting a minor? Society has to defend them because they cannot defend themselves. Is there precedence to argue the morality of enjoying child porn in the privacy and comfort of ones own home? No! Yet it's still happening right? Why? Could it possibly be due to increasing exposure?

Josak from variable on June 03, 2012:

No I said we had freedom of speech and information, there is a big difference between that and murder, one pertains to the rights of the individual, I have the right to read what I want the other pertains to the rights of another, they have a right to life and security when you try to tell someone they cannot read something you are taking away that persons rights, when you tell someone they can't murder people you are protecting the rights of others, it's a big difference.

If I sat down right now to watch a staged snuff film I am not infringing on the rights of anyone so it is wrong to make it illegal for me to do that. People who make real snuff films should be jailed for murder but there is nothing wrong with looking at something and there is a very dangerous precedent in making looking at something a crime.

Can you provide an evidence that the numbers of pedophiles and psychopaths are rising? Psychopathy is a mental disease caused by genetic factors or deeply scaring experiences in early development as for pedophilia I don't see any evidence that it's rising in terms of actual harm done to children.

People choose to watch this stuff, in all probability the vast majority of people who do are perfectly normal functioning people, with families and lives, neither you nor I have any right to tell them that they can't watch whatever they want for their own enjoyment, that is censorship and it's wrong. Every person has the right to live their life as they want to unless they harm another.

mintinfo (author) on June 03, 2012:

Point taken. Still, the free will argument can be extended to encompass everything in life. Who decided that is was bad to kill? By your argument it would be your right to kill another person without consequence. A line had to be drawn somewhere and that line was along the moral values that were chosen by the people.

As a child my parents never had to wonder about my whereabouts as I worry about my children's whereabouts today. I would disappear on my bicycle for hours and if I got lost I could easily ask a stranger for directions. Not anymore. Pedophiles and psychopaths who are no longer scared because they have become emboldened by the crap they are now able to get their eyes on are on the prowl.

The line that separates morality from free will need to be moved in order to keep up with advances in society.

Josak from variable on June 03, 2012:

It's not your job or mine or the governments to make people feel optimistic about life or to protect them from reality like children, people have a right to see whatever they want, obviously some people enjoy seeing this stuff and you find it distasteful so we make it illegal, next comes pornography because that is distasteful too then books that talk about violence and oppression because those make people feel pessimistic about life too etc. etc. Lots of governments have gone down this path before and it never leads anywhere good.

I love the fact that this is a free country, I love the fact that I can read whatever I choose to read as a responsible adult and that it is my choice to do so, no one has any right to take away that right or that choice. I grew up under a dictatorship with no freedom of speech, trust me, this is how it starts.

So tell me as a responsible adult who pas his own taxes, what right do you have to tell me what I can and can't watch or read?

mintinfo (author) on June 03, 2012:

Thanks for your input but in my opinion the arguments for Snuff are not strong enough to stand up in a moral court of law.

1) There is a difference between a Snuff video and a captures recording of a death caused by accident or cctv. A Snuff video is intentionally recorded for the sole purpose of exhibiting the crime.

2) The only purpose a Snuff video should serve is for the capture and conviction of the perpetrator. Yes the Kennedy assassination has been seen by millions but it was not made by the shooter nor was there any pre-collaboration between the shooter and the news camera men.

3) I believe in freedom of information also but does the everyday citizen really need to see the million and one ways to kill and dismember someone. Will it make people feel better about life and be socially responsible citizens or will it make people fearful, distrusting, and pessimistic about life.

Josak from variable on June 03, 2012:

They absolutely should be legal for a few reasons.

#1 What classifies as a snuff video? is it where a death is portrayed even if it's fake? Because the most shows and movies have that happen.

#2 Even real snuff videos can serve an important purpose to the public, take the Kennedy assassinate tape, it's been seen by most Americans and was important in the Kennedy investigation.

#3 Freedom of expression and speech should never ever be destroyed because you don't like the material (I don't like it either) the Hustler trials of Larry Flint went all the way to the Supreme court which affirmed that even "indecent" images are covered by the first amendment and that the courts have no place telling people what they can and can not see.

Banning any media because you find it distasteful is very dangerous precedent.

As Voltaire said "I detest what you say but I would gladly die for your right to say it" the same principle applies, it is not the place of anyone to tell others what they can and can't look at no matter what the subject matter might be.

"Enjoy the privilege of using your own mind to decide what you wish to see and what you don't and grant to others that same privilege".