It’s GOOD That Massachusetts Court Didn’t Ban Perverted ‘Upskirt’ Photos

So, no doubt you are reading that headline and expecting me to be coming out in favor of perverted, privacy invading photos taken up a woman’s skirt with neither her knowledge nor approval. Naturally I am not, but I am still glad that the Massachusetts Supreme Court did not ban such illicit photography. In fact, the court did exactly what it should have.

Earlier this week the Massachusetts Supreme Court ruled that these disgusting upskirt shots are not illegal.

Last year a man in Boston was secretly taking video and still shots underneath women’s skirts on the city’s public buses and trains. He was using these photos for a sexual purpose, of course, posting them online for other perverts to see.

It’s a disgusting practice that is clearly a breach of an unaware woman’s privacy–not to mention prurient and perverted–and should clearly be outlawed.

Yet, the Mass. Court ruled that the photos were legal. Why do I celebrate that ruling? Because it was the right thing to do. It really was.

You see, the high court ruled that the law prosecutors were trying to invoke to convict the pervert, the state’s peeping-Tom law, did not apply. That law was created to stop secret photography in bathrooms and changing rooms, it was written to prevent photos of “partially nude” women or women who are undressing in a closed room. It was meant to prevent both a perverted action as well as to protect women’s privacy. On the other hand, an upskirt shot is of a woman who is “fully dressed” and walking around in public. Clearly, by the letter of the law, this peeping-Tom law does not apply to an upskirt shot. The law as written doesn’t work to stop upskirt photography.

Still unclear why I am supporting the Court’s decision?

Because–for a change–the Massachusetts Supreme Court ruled based on a strict reading of the law and not a search for any “penumbras” or “emanations”–as courts usually do these days.

Shockingly, the Court did not write law from the bench by summarily extending coverage to something new and unheard of. The court did not create new categories and rules out of whole cloth–like they usually do.

This was the right way for the Court to work. This is the way every court should work.

Today, the Bay State’s legislature announced that it is looking into a new law that would outlaw upskirt photography (as well they should). This is also the proper way to handle this case. If the current law is unsatisfactory on a particular point, the legislature should not be relying on the courts to summarily change laws. The legislators should get to work and make the change themselves. That is what they were hired to do!

So, good on Massachusetts for a proper approach to this pervert’s photos and the outlawing of his invasive proclivities.

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Posted by on March 7, 2014.
Filed under Constitutional Issues, Democrats, Justice, Law, Liberals.
Warner Todd Huston is a Chicago-based freelance writer, has been writing opinion editorials and social criticism since early 2001 and is featured on many websites such as Andrew Breitbart's BigGovernment.com and BigJournalism.com, RightWingNews.com, CanadaFreePress.com, RightPundits.com, StoptheACLU.com, Human Events Magazine, among many, many others. Additionally, he has been a frequent guest on talk-radio programs to discuss his opinion editorials and current events.He has also written for several history magazines and appears in the new book "Americans on Politics, Policy and Pop Culture" which can be purchased on amazon.com. He is also the owner and operator of PubliusForum.com. Feel free to contact him with any comments or questions, EMAIL Warner Todd Huston: igcolonel .at. hotmail.com"The only end of writing is to enable the reader better to enjoy life, or better to endure it." --Samuel Johnson

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  • Commander_Chico

    You are right, Warner. Laws must be clear.

  • Hank_M

    Trust me, this is very very unusual for Ma.
    I doubt it will happen again.

  • Plinytherecent

    Agreed. It should be illegal, but wasn’t. Legislative failure that will (hopefully) be promptly corrected.

  • jim_m

    This was actually a good example of government working properly. The law didn’t do what the people wanted so the legislature acted promptly to fix it.

    Unlike obamacare where the law does not do what is wanted so rather than have the congress fix it obama chooses to illegally rule by fiat like some scumbag dictator.

  • LiberalNightmare

    Don’t get used to it. If the legislature was discussing a new way to tax those photos, you can be sure that they would have tried a lot harder. (and you can bet that tax would be tied to the inflation index so that they never have to vote for it again)

  • Brucehenry
    • jim_m

      If MA were run by the GOP you wouldn’t have had this problem in the first place. You sure as hell wouldn’t have the president of the state senate the mobbed up brother of one of the FBI’s 10 most wanted.

    • warnertoddhuston

      I want that 5 minutes of my life back after reading that waste of time.

      • Brucehenry

        Kinda funny coming from a guy who just spent, I assume, 3 days at CPAC.

        I just thought it was kinda humorous. Thanks for reading it, though.

        • warnertoddhuston

          (I hate to admit it, but I am here in DC, yes, but have skipped most of CPAC! LOL. I’ve gone to other events instead.)

          • Commander_Chico

            Warner, you illustrated a story partially titled “perverted upskirt photos” with a pretty good perverted upskirt photo.

          • Brucehenry

            Apparently knew just where to find the perfect one.

          • warnertoddhuston

            Yep. I was wondering how long it would take someone to note that dichotomy. I’m a widdle devil.

  • yetanotherjohn

    If they had convicted the photographer, logically they should have convicted the women photographed for appearing in public nude or partially nude.
    I agree that in a rare fit of blue state sanity, the courts are upholding the law as written and the legislature is drawing up a law to cover the apparently unintended gap.

    • Brucehenry

      The women were photographed without their knowledge or consent, genius.

  • Commander_Chico

    Chico’s in Benghazi today. Not a very impressive place, but nice sunset over the Med..

    • fustian24

      I assume you are comforted to know that Hillary still has your back.

      • fustian24

        I know that she’s no longer Secretary of State, but she is every bit as engaged as she was when in office.

      • http://wizbangblog.com/author/rodney-graves/ Rodney G. Graves

        It’ the overwatch he deserves.

  • Par4Course

    Most of the comments on judicial decisions are strictly results oriented – if the commentator doesn’t like the outcome, then the judges must be stupid or corrupt. This article actually looked at the law, the facts and the reasoning behind the ruling rather than just the fact that some perverted photographer will not go to jail.

  • http://www.traveLightgame.com/ ljcarolyne

    Did Harry Greed get in on this one? Oh that’s right he only does. . .never mind, and he is in Washington DC.
    If these perverted politicians had a real job, this kind of crap would stop.

  • stan25

    I noticed in the story, a male was in trouble for the upskirt deal. As well as he should be. While, I don’t condone this action, the powers that be should enforce the law equally. Women are just as big of perverts as men are. Only they get a pass when they do the same thing.

    • Brucehenry

      What the hell could you possibly be talking about?!? These women were unwilling, unknowing victims of this guy.