Wednesday, October 22, 2014
A Letter to The Motion Picture Association of America Dated: October 22, 2014 -- Wednesday
October 22st, 2014 Wednesday
Mr. Tracy Charles Gibson,
Writer—Film Critic –Social Commentator—Researcher
Post Office Box 42878
Philadelphia, Common Wealth of Pennsylvania 19101-2878
Draft to: The Motion Picture Association of America;
500 Mamaroneck Avenue, Suite 403,;
Harrison, New York 10528;
Actor’s Equity; 165 West 46th Street;
New York, New York 10036;
110 West 57th Street;
New York, New York 10019…
Re: Improving on How Movies get rated; demanding new gerunds & Asking Who decides what movie topics & movie subjects get to be considered & accepted for actual production of feature films in the United States for International distribution… How do we improve on this picture!!!
Dear Madam or Sir:
I am an avid movie watcher & I have been since a very early age. I know there is a social, economic & intimate equation used to figure out what movies get rated. My feeling is the system needs to be changed & overhauled dramatically to allow for more professionalism, more broader subject areas to be studied both artistically & through the documentary format & for a greater number of independent films to get the kind of rating that will allow for a broader more main stream audience to accept them… While these changes must be dramatic, I think they can be put on a time schedule that would allow them, the changes that is, to be phased in over time incrementally. My feeling is the film rating system needs to be changed to include new gerunds that really didn’t exist before. For example, X-Rated films really should not just be all lumped together as X films and given a public shunning when people privately spend hundreds of dollars on such movies. [Some of them may have parts or entire films that are of some artistic value.].
There should be, in my humble estimation, a gerund that denotes educational video among the adult film venue. Such films, although adult, could be used to help sometimes reluctant parents teach a higher level of ethical intimate behaviors to their children. *[ I am not a parent, but I am deeply concerned as to what our young People are watching. I think there should be an independent board that answers to the public need to determine ratings, but I feel this board must be REALLY independent and include regular people, parents & some younger people [over 20-years of age] as well & be racially mixed, mixed as far as religion, class, income level, sex, and sexual orientation.] Such independent adult films could include no slapping or a great deal less slapping or hitting; no violence of any kind and no ethnic slurs; Women would need to be treated like real human beings for a change, as would Lesbians and Gay men. Such films could have more meaningful story lines, complex dialogue, and a greater acting skill level than what is common in present adult film. Such a film could have some kind of Adult Sexual Education designation and could be separated along lines of sexual orientation—Gay or Straight. I would also recommend no sharing of body fluids & a required use of condoms in such films. These films would be mostly for entertainment purposes for adults over 21 years of age. For example they might be called: More Ethically Sensitive Adult Films.
There is yet another gerund for more adult films. These would be used to help parents, as mentioned earlier, to make sense of sexuality, intimacy, early sexual development of their teen-aged children, if the parents so desired to use them as an educational venue. Early sexual encounters & other early quasi-sexual encounters that youth may have had with adults or other people in the family or just friends or employers may have a devastating and deleterious impact on young adults and teen if they have no context through which to experience such early experiences. I am not saying that such encounters between adults and teens were or are of an overt sexual nature. Such encounters may have been an awkward conversation or an awkward phone conversation with a parent, an ole aunt or uncle; a phone conversation or personal conversation with a peer; or may have been more openly intimate in nature. Degrees & levels of decency & appropriateness need to be made clear early on for young people so boundaries can be established & not so easily crossed as they tend to be right now in Western society, especially in the United States. There needs to be some penalties for crossing such boundaries put forth by parents, grandparents or guardians, but those penalties don’t need to be gross, unusual or too harsh, but they need to make clear what was done wrong & there needs to be help to make sure they don’t happen again. Such film would be more educational in nature than for entertainment purposes. These films could be for young People between the ages of 13 to 20. They could be called for example: Films That Educate Our Youth on Appropriate Sexual Matters, Intimacy & Sexual etiquette.
There could also be another designation for youth 5 to 16 talking about inappropriate & appropriate touching by adults & peers & how to ``deal with same’’ if & when they happen Listening to trusted & responsible adults, responsible grandparents, & other significant & trusted family members can have a significant positive impact on lessening the long-term damage to youth in such cases. I, for one, don’t think that just because a person in the family is Gay or Lesbian that their sexual orientation makes one unqualified to be a trusted or significant role model or parent-like member of the family. I have friends who are male homosexuals who have sons & children of their own & have done wonderful work at raising their children in relatively healthy households. Back on subject, such film could be used to help the extended family avoid those ``sweep-under-the-rug’’ subjects like incest, sexual child abuse, molestation, sexual violence and inappropriate touching, etc. These films could help expose the abusers in the family & help lead to psychiatric help for such family members instead of just ignoring or shunning such family members. Such film could also be used to help determine what happens exactly in such cases and help those abused feel lee victimized and more empowered. This would certainly lead to more healthy families in the Black & Latin community. I am sure ALL ethnic communities could benefit greatly from such a new film gerund. For the African, Caribbean and African American family, bringing in traditional African mores, traditions, family histories, long-held values & so forth may very well be very beneficial, even if such mores & family values go against more modern family traditions & more modern community standards. Such film might be called: Films That Examine Appropriate Interactions with Our Youth.
At the same time, these newly proposed changes are not thought up or proposed to curb or curtail artistic expression. Rather, they are being extended to help give legitimate boundaries to move towards helping people understand the new realities they are faced with each and every day in modern Western societies. I think of, for example, how Black families used to feed each other very unhealthy foods at family reunions. For example, now very few Black family Reunions, even in the Deep South--where more traditional Soul Food cuisine is prevalent--offer some vegetarian alternatives. Many younger people & the older more responsible people want to eat or try delicious vegetarian foods even if it is for the first time. There may even be a person in the family or two, like my sister, who specialize in cooking such vegetarian fair. Back to the subject at hand, like food, with film, it is important to point out that I am not saying to do away with all the other types of adult films. People will still want traditionally fattening foods like they will want traditionally over-the-top adult film. Taking away choices might well be impossible because of the inexpensiveness of producing independent film on a shoestring budget & because of the ``underground market’’ for such film. Just offering alternatives will be hard enough for the porn establishment to embrace & accept. By the same token, it is hard, but improving, for the food industry to accept vegetarian alternatives that are better for us and less fatty, salty and processed. The market for an array of film that might exhibit some of what might by many be considered very odd & strange behaviors, is still very strong. I have personally tried to avoid such films that, in my own estimation, go too far. But having an alternative & more choices will have, I believe, a very positive impact on our culture and our People here in North America.
I would like you to circulate this letter to your friends in the Film Industry and write me back to let me know how I can extend the impact of this letter and any other such letters about film ratings. How film risings need to change the codes through which films are rated is apparent as explained in this letter. As critical thinkers, parents, grandparents, guardians and others in the community concerned about our youth and our families and artistic freedom, it is important to extend & create & / or recreate new film gerunds in U.S. & World Markets. Creating safe spaces for more educationally intimate films to be created that will ultimately bring forth a better, more healthy environment for families to talk about intimacy & sexuality in a coherent, knowledgeable & parentally authoritative Way that will help spread more truth, family stability & lessen fear & ignorance on this subject—this must be our goal.
Peace & Blessings,
Tracy Charles Gibson, Advocate-Budding Philanthropist – Businessman & Proud Uncle & Proud Great Uncle