Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Tony Spain's Monday Morning Rant: Censorship...

I know it is not Monday but since I was not able to post on Monday I will give it to you today.

Since I am not going to blog on the weekends anymore I find myself building up steam over the weekend. So to open the release valve and blow off some steam here is Tony's Monday Morning Rant: Warning the following comments are the written expressed rage of the author right off the top of his head... proceed with caution.

The American Family Association Wants FCC To Fine FOX Over NASCAR Bristol Race.

FOX TV is under fire from the American Family Association who has contacted the FCC and asked them to fine FOX TV over an incident that happened during the broadcast of the NASCAR Food City 500 race from Bristol TN.

What happened that got the AFA crying foul??? Well, it was a little bit of foul language used between Martin Truex Jr. and his pit crew chief Kevin Manion after Truex Jr. wrecked his car into the inside wall. Now, if you've watched any NASCAR race on television before you would know that periodically through out the race they tap into the radio communications between the drivers, their spotters and their pit crews. This is what FOX TV was doing with driver Martin Truex Jr. and his crew chief Kevin Manion when Manion said

The AFA claims that "millions of viewers, including children, were offended by the crude profanity." Well that is just a bunch of “horse hair” if you ask me.

Is the AFA trying to say that millions of viewers did not know what they were watching and therefore were taken by surprise??? These people were watching a NASCAR race, not Sesame Street. This is not the first time foul language has made its way to the airwaves during the broadcast of one of these races. Any adult that was offended by Manion’s explicit description as to how Truex Jr’s car had been handling should find another sport to watch, golf might be a good start. Look folks, this is part of the culture that surrounds NASCAR, always has been. You take a driver that just hit a wall going 100 plus miles per hour and something obscene is probably going to be said. If you don’t like it then don’t watch it.

As for whatever children that may have been watching, I am willing to bet that this is a word they've heard hundreds of times before. I know from my own personal life experiences that I had heard this word plenty of times as a child usually from my father. It would sound a little something like this: "you'd better clean this s_ _ _ up (your room) today if you want to play with your friends this weekend," or "don't give me any more of your c_ _ _ or I'm going to kick your a_ _ so hard you'll have to lift your shirt to take a s_ _ _!!."

But anyways, back to the AFA… The AFA is always looking to get someone in trouble with the FCC. In 2002 the AFA complained to the FCC about a Victoria Secret Fashion Show. They said that it was a “high tech strip show and broke the laws of decency.” They also condemned Deion Sanders for his claims of being a born again Christian and participating by interviewing one of the models in what they called a “solicitation of pornographic broadcast.” In 2004 the AFA continued an on going campaign against Howard Stern for his “obscene” radio show. This time his crime was a caller’s reference to the “N” word. The AFA complained to the FCC and Clear Channel Radio demanding that Stern had to go. This ultimately led to Stern being fired by Clear Channel Radio and moving to Sirius Sattelite Radio. Also in 2004 the AFA was behind a complaint campaign to the FCC trying to stop the November Veterans Day airing of Saving Private Ryan on ABC for vulgar language. The AFA was also behind a campaign that targeted the “Harry Potter” books claiming it promoted witchcraft among children.

Now don’t get me wrong here, I am not trying to stop the AFA from saying whatever it is they want to say. In fact, after visiting the AFA website I found there are several things that I agree with the AFA on which is why I do not watch much TV. I just do not agree with how they have decided to deal with it.

I believe we have freedom of speech. I also believe that if you do not like someone else’s freedom of speech you have the right to speak out against them, organize boycotts, and turn them off. But the AFA is trying to take away that freedom of speech away from people who disagree with them, like Howard Stern by using the FCC. These people believe in pure 100% control over the airwaves. In other words, they are for censorship. Instead of letting viewers decide what they want to watch, hear, or read they want to control what you get to watch, hear, or read. So what happens when the shoe is on the other foot and it is Christian and conservative values that are under fire from a group that demands the FCC to do something.

I say let the free market run its course. If there is a market for what is being broadcast than so be it. If there is not one it will eventually disappear. Just ask the Dixie Chicks.

But once again, the AFA is out there urging their followers to write letters to the FCC complaining about Fox TV for allowing the "s" word to be broadcast. They want the FCC to fine Fox for this infraction of the laws of common decency. What a bunch of absolute bulls_ _ _. And if you don’t like that then read someone else’s Blog!!!

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