What do history's most notorious despots have in common with many of the flag-waving, patriotic politicians of our day? Both groups rise to power through the exploitation of fear, which has become a societal plague. There have been widespread casualties. We need an antidote. Feardom offers its readers a much-needed immunization.
What is that standard?
Don’t see R- rated movies or vulgar videos or participate in any entertainment that is immoral, suggestive, or pornographic.
No R-rated videos. No vulgar videos. No immoral, suggestive, or pornographic videos.
Are there any PG-13 movies that are vulgar, immoral, suggestive, or pornographic? Yup.
Four years after President Benson gave this commandment, the Church released an updated version of the “For the Strength of Youth” pamphlet. The instruction regarding movies contained all four words that Pres. Benson used:
Don’t attend or participate in any form of entertainment, including concerts, movies, and videocassettes, that is vulgar, immoral, inappropriate, suggestive, or pornographic in any way. Movie ratings do not always accurately reflect offensive content.
Now, lest anybody think to themselves “well, that’s just an instruction for the youth, but I’m an adult!”, Elder J. Richard Clarke said:
For those who bear the priesthood, young men or adults, there is only one standard of moral decency. Any film, television show, music, or printed material unfit for youth is also unfit for parents.
Those who rationalize acceptance of immoral material on grounds of maturity or sophistication are deceived. Those who excuse transgression by saying "Well, I’m not perfect" may be reminded that conscious sin is a long way from perfection. We would do best to consider this counsel of President Brigham Young: " ‘Be … as perfect as [you] can,’ for that is all we can do. … The sin … is [not doing] as well as [you know] how." (In Journal of Discourses, 2:129—30.)
Moral to the story: No rated R movies, no vulgar movies, no immoral, inappropriate, suggestive, or pornographic movies (or books, magazines, websites, TV shows, etc.)
A worthy standard indeed.