The Right To Be Creepy


Brian Dalton is heading back to court. The 24-year-old Ohio man was arrested two years ago for writing child pornography, in a case that has become a free-speech cause celebre. Since Dalton's porn consisted of words, not images, he didn't actually exploit any kids to make it; and since he created it for his own consumption, not to sell or give away, it's hard to argue that it would provoke anyone else to assault any children. He is, in short, in jail for nothing more than writing down unpleasant thoughts.

Yet he initially pleaded guilty to the charges, and has been fighting for the right to withdraw the plea so he could challenge the law's constitutionality. Yesterday he won that right.