When art becomes a problem

So this photographer living in Tashkent, Uzbekistan was convicted of slandering her country. How? She took pictures of raggedly dressed peasant boys, dreary looking young women, despondent old couples filling up jugs of dirty water, and the governing body of Uzbekistan is under the impression that foreigners viewing this gallery will believe that is how life really is. Genius.

So, photographer was taken to court and if convicted, sentenced to up to three years in prison but in a court exploding climax the judge waived the decision and let her off scot-free saying [paraphrase] ‘Because of the 18th anniversary of Uzbek independence, I will not put you in jail—praise Uzbekistan, and stop taking pictures of gloomy shit.’

And in one of the more phenomenal methods of diverting blame, when the Times reporter called the Uzbek’s general prosecutor’s press office, the man answering the phone said [paraphrasing] ‘I’m sorry, but only the manager is authorized to make comment on these hearings.’ ‘Can I speak to your manager?’ ‘I’m sorry, that position has yet to be filled.’ ‘Well-’ ‘Thank you so much; Enjoy Uzbekistan.’

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