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The Meese Commission

Meese Commission Reports & Opinions

In 1970, the President's Commission on Obscenity and Pornography concluded that "there was insufficient evidence that exposure to explicit sexual materials played a significant role in the causation of delinquent or criminal behavior." In general, with regard to adults, the Commission recommended that legislation "should not seek to interfere with the right of adults who wish to do so to read, obtain, or view explicit sexual materials." Regarding the view that these materials should be restricted for adults in order to protect young people from exposure to them, the Commission found that it is "inappropriate to adjust the level of adult communication to that considered suitable for children." The Supreme Court supported this view. ~ Presidential Commission on Obscenity and Pornography.

Then came the group of anti-porn zealots tapped by president Ronald Reagan to lead a commission to "study" pornography called the Attorney General's Commission on Pornography, or, as it became known, the "Meese Commission." They did a lot of things and wrote a very long report, but they did anything but study the issue, as you can see from these resources.

The Obscene, Disgusting, and Vile Meese Commission Report by Pat Califa, 1986

"The final report of this new Commission, published in July, 1986, holds out the hope that by using draconian measures against pornography we can turn America into a rerun of "Leave It to Beaver." The Commission's findings should placate the lowest common denominator of the citizenry who made a drugstore cowboy our Chief Executive--those folks who believe the Bible should be taken literally, but the First Amendment should not."

The Harm of Porn: Just Another Excuse to Censor An article by Avedon Carol

Avedon Carol, long a student of the effects of porn, writes a short history of anti-porn activism.

Politics and Pornography: A Comparison of the Findings of the President's Commission and the Meese Commission and the Resulting Response by David M. Edwards

A history of the conflicts between the findings of the 1970 President's Report and the Meese Commission.

"What these two historical episodes have in common is a desire to focus public concern on a target which could be easily attacked in order to divert attention from underlying social problems which are not amenable to politically innocuous solutions."

Pornography Commission Report Baptist Doctrine applied to this political Report. (Link fixed)

Free speech advocates fret about NAS Net-porn commission, a discussion that begins with the Meese Commission.

Pornography Studies: The Social Effects of Porn, our links to other, more scientific studies than the Meese Commission report.

Meese Commission Books

The Meese Commission Exposed: Proceedings of a Ncac Public Information Briefing on the Attorney General's Commission on Pornography

United States of America vs. sex: How the Meese commission lied about pornography