• It’s not about the sex…

    I’m less worried about the war against sexual openness than the war on anyone who dares voice disagreement with the Bush administration. Stern(who’s hardly raising the level of discussion about sexuality) has been behaving like this for decades, but he was thrown off the air shortly after starting to openly criticize Bush. By ClearChannel, which had earlier led the charge against the Dixie Chicks for daring not to be cute dumb blondes singing fun songs.

    Sure, I think the right has been hellbent on shutting down discussion of practical AIDS-prevention measures and so on, but I’m more worried about the funding attacks on international aid agencies than about what Howard Stern contributes to the conversation. I think he’s being targeted not because of his grossout content, but for trying to inject some actual substance into his show.

    April 14, 2004
  • Re: It’s not about the sex…

    It is about the sex.

    Everything you say about ClearChannel doing the Bush Administration’s dirty work, and about funding cuts to international family planning is absolutely true. What is also true is that frank talk about sex is anathema to the right wing. I don’t think you can parse ClearChannel’s motivations so neatly.

    Whether or not you approve of the way Stern and the locker-room fraternity of shock jocks talk about sex is beside the point. They are being fired because they talk about sex, regardless of their politics. Atlanta’s “Regular Guys” just got the axe, too. They were the number two drive-time show in the highly competitive male 18 to 49 demographic. I would characterize their politics as High School Republicanism, much the same as new York’s “Scott and Todd in the Morning.”

    The Bush administration can get away with this because Americans, even liberal Americans, have a vicious puritanical streak. We can talk about politics, art, popular culture, history, science–you name it–with humor, but we dismiss any discourse on sex and sexuality unless it’s presented with clinical frigidity. What rank hypocrisy.

    April 14, 2004
  • Where do I sign up to do something about how Howard Stern is being treated? I generally despise his show and his humor, but I respect his right o say what he wants to.

    April 14, 2004
  • Too Few Voices Raised for Free Speech

    As far as I can tell, neither the American Civil Liberties Union nor People For the American Way have joined the fray against this current wave of FCC censorship. You could write to them (both sites have feedback forms) to express your concerns, and they might offer you additional resources.

    The lesser-known National Coalition Against Censorship and People For the American Way have formally stated their opposition to new FCC decency rules.

    You can also write to your senators and representatives. Their addresses and positions on variouis issues are listed at a great site: On The Issues.

    April 15, 2004
  • The Jesus Chainsaw Massacre

    This kuro5hin post is right on target for this thread, contrasting it with the promotion of Gibson’s sadistic film:

    You show a child a female breast and you’ve scarred his mind? But, as some in the religious right were encouraging (to heck with the rating, all of a sudden, apparently), take your kids to this movie and you do what… enlighten them?

    Let us quantify the showing of Janet Jackson’s breast as compared to the Jesus Chainsaw Massacre:
    Half a second of uninvited breast.
    Two hours of ultraviolent evisceration.
    Got it?

    The writer also proposes a sequel for Gibson to make:

    “The Passion of Gandhi.” That movie, of course, would not be about Gandhi’s political rise and peaceful battles with colonial Britain, but instead the movie would start with Gandhi being shot, and the rest would simply show, slowly and with sadistic “passion,” the bloody suffering of watching Gandhi pass away.

    April 19, 2004
  • Re: The Jesus Chainsaw Massacre

    I got a laugh out of this. It’s all very true, but not especially news. You and I have had this discussion about the right wing’s violence fetish before. The NRA would have a lot fewer members if they were more adept at getting laid.

    April 20, 2004

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