Today on Blogcritics
Home » Bush Signs Broadcast Decency Enforcement Act

Bush Signs Broadcast Decency Enforcement Act

Please Share...Print this pageTweet about this on Twitter0Share on Facebook0Share on Google+0Pin on Pinterest0Share on TumblrShare on StumbleUpon0Share on Reddit0Email this to someone

President Bush said some surprisingly sensible things in conjunction with signing the Broadcast Decency Enforcement Act of 2005 yesterday, reminding parents that they have primary responsibility for what their children watch on television.

The Act increases broadcaster liability for indecency by a factor of ten, raising fines up to $325,000 per indecency infraction, defined by the Federal Communications Commission as sexual or excretory content of a “patently offensive nature” between the hours of 6 a.m. and 10 p.m.

The new law comes two and a half years after Nipplegate rocked the 2004 Super Bowl. The Act does not include earlier provisions that would have allowed individual performers to be fined for infractions, broadcast license suspension after three offenses, and did not bring cable and satellite broadcasts under the FCC’s purview.

Speaking to a crowd of assembled legislators and dignitaries including FCC Chairman and decency crusader Kevin Martin, Bush said, “Every day our nation’s parents strive to raise their children in a culture that too often produces coarse, vulgar and obscene entertainment.”

“In our free society,” he continued, “parents have the final responsibility over the television shows that their children watch, or the websites they visit, or the music they listen to. That’s a responsibility of moms and dads all across the country, to make sure their children are listening to or watching the right kind of programming.”

This question of ultimate responsibility is central to the legal and philosophical debate going on around the country over broadcast standards and the role of government in enforcing them. The debate may be coming to a head as the major networks and their affiliates went to court in April seeking to overturn a new round of indecency penalties proposed by the FCC in March, including a record $3.3 million sanction against the CBS teen drama Without a Trace.

Continuing his signing speech, Bush then turned his attention from parents to broadcasters. “Parents are the first line of defense, but broadcasters and the electronics industry must play a valuable role in protecting our children from obscene and indecent programming,” he said. “Unfortunately, in recent years, broadcast programming has too often pushed the bounds of decency. One study found that during the hours between 8:00 p.m. and 9:00 p.m. the use of profanity on television shows increased … by 95 percent … from 1988 to 2002.”

“Since 2000, the number of indecency complaints received by the FCC has increased from just hundreds per year to hundreds of thousands,” Bush said. “In other words, people are saying, we’re tired of it, and we expect the government to do something about it.”

Perhaps, but the president didn’t mention that a very large percentage of those increased complaints come from a very few sources, in particular anti-indecency lobbying groups like the Parents Television Council.

Taking an understandably self-serving approach, Dennis Wharton, spokesman for the National Association of Broadcasters, said, “In issues related to programming content, NAB believes responsible self-regulation is preferable to government regulation. If there is regulation, it should be applied equally to cable and satellite TV and satellite radio.”

On the one hand the public airwaves ARE finite, owned by the people, and available to the broadcasters only at the people’s pleasure; on the other hand, most people get all their TV — including broadcast stations — via cable or satellite these days, so why should cable and satellite stations be regulated differently from broadcast?

That’s what the courts will decide.

Powered by

About Eric Olsen

  • http://www.landofthefreehomeofthebrave.org/wp/ Margaret Romao Toigo

    I saw that episode of Without a Trace (which is more of a detective show than a teen drama, BTW), and it was pretty racy for network television, but it aired at 10pm EST, which falls outside of the 6am-10pm restriction.

  • http://www.elitistpig.com Dave Nalle

    Remind me. Is the PTC the big left-wing decency group or another right wing one?

    Dave

  • http://absent-mind.blogspot.com/ Jet in Columbus

    Well at one time they were so left wing that they went around in a little circle and now their right wing… stay tuned for further buletins…

  • http://absent-mind.blogspot.com/ Jet in Columbus

    You know Eric, I’m old enough to remember a time when we had prayer in public schools. In 2nd grade I was made to stand in the corner for half an hour becaue I refused to recite the Lord’s Prayer correctly.

    You see my teacher’s version was “Forgive our trespasses as we would forgive those who trespass against us.” but being a staunch Presbyterian, even at that age, our version was “Forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors”

    They won’t be happy with just Broadcast TV Eric I promise you that; Cable’s next, then Satelite radio, then Newsprint articles, this very site, then what books are available in the public library. and ultimately what version of the bible is legal to teach in churches.

    You may think I’m overly exageratedly worried and alarmist, but I lived through it, I’ve suffered the persecution of being gay in the 60s and 70s when it was legal to be arrested for it. I loved through the days when Anita Bryant made the papers and TV news at least once a week, and Falwells “JESUS FIRST” pins began appearing on suits.

    Like it was in the late 70s and the Reagan 80s, unless we stand up and say “Stop them here, and let them go no further” the day is coming.

    Mark my words

    Solus mei sententia
    Jet

  • Eric Olsen

    the rules haven’t changed Jet, just the penalties. I agree we must remain vigilant, but there are any number of reasons why your concerns about censorship won’t come to fruition. You give those who oppose free speech far too much credit and power.

    Margaret, I guess the show aired some places before 10pm – that’s exactly the issue.

  • http://absent-mind.blogspot.com/ Jet in Columbus

    Your right Eric, they’re trying to use the excuse on the technicality that it was broadcast by satelite at 10PM eastern to their affiliates which would be 7PM Pacific or even early afternoon in Hawaii. People aren’t supposed to be able to get those broadcasts, but they still use it as an excuse. Can you imagine our “restricted to family programming hours” if they extended to 10PM Honolulu time?

    Solus mei sententia
    Jet

  • http://www.1bigdragon.blogspot.com Peter J

    Eric,
    Bush spoke;
    “In our free society,” he continued, “parents have the final responsibility over the television shows that their children watch, or the websites they visit, or the music they listen to. That’s a responsibility of moms and dads all across the country, to make sure their children are listening to or watching the right kind of programming.”

    This I agree with 100%. I’ve seen Saturday morning cartoons which, had I the resposibility of young children, I would not allow them to watch! I am not in the least bit prudish but I would be embarrassed to sit and watch these cartoons with them. Commercials, day or night, border on soft porn.
    But, this is totally the parents responsibility, no one elses. It’s a very simple solution, without the government o any one else becoming involved. Now, this is the hard part. What these cronic piss-ants need to do is program all of the channels to History, Geography, Animal Planet,any which will teach as well as entertain. Purchase or rent videos in the same vein, it is up totally to parents what and who they allow in their homes.Would these poor fools have a known child rapist babysit their children then absolve themselves of all responsibility because they
    It is the business of no one else who or what I,as an adult allow in my home. It is not the business of the Government to moniter my actions. I am not willing to give up one more Right simply to placate a bunch of tounge clucking moralists. As I’ve always said, if you don’t like it,turn it off, change the channel, whatever!
    It always amazed me that when Howard Stern was on publc airways his biggest critics knew more about the comings and goings of the show than myself, who was a casual listner while driving! If I had a child in the car I certainly would not have put that station on.
    WE do not need any more laws or regulations telling us how to conduct our lives.
    Like Bush said, it is a free society in which it is the final responsibility of moms and dads to make sure their children are listening to or watching the right kind of programming!
    Highlight the words ‘free’ and ‘final’.
    no where in the middle do I see the word government!

  • http://absent-mind.blogspot.com/ Jet in Columbus

    Oh yeah right Peter good idea, with that much shielding this nation’s kids will really be prepared for the real world.

    As it is America, is falling flat on it’s face in the sciences because the kids are being taught not to believe in it by the Intelligent design nuts.

    Next they’ll be outlawing hospitals and emegency rooms because it’s God’s will if you have a disease or accident.

    I cover a lot of this ground in my article Obscenity and the FCC: The TV Networks Should Follow Howard Stern’s Lead
    Solus mei sententia
    Jet

  • http://www.1bigdragon.blogspot.com Peter J

    Jet,,,Are we cofused together??Did I somehow come off in favor of censorship?
    My point was for government to keep out of my livingroom. It’s up to PARENTS to police their own kids! Long story short.

  • http://absent-mind.blogspot.com/ Jet in Columbus

    Sorry I saw red when you said you agreed 100 percent with Bush, I don’t know what confused me.

  • http://www.1bigdragon.blogspot.com Peter J

    Looking back at it I probably should have chosen better wording, sorry ’bout that!

  • http://absent-mind.blogspot.com/ Jet in Columbus

    Check out the link in comment 8 and you’ll see where I’m coming from

  • Arch Conservative

    “Oh yeah right Peter good idea, with that much shielding this nation’s kids will really be prepared for the real world.
    “As it is America, is falling flat on it’s face in the sciences because the kids are being taught not to believe in it by the Intelligent design nuts.”

    Exsqueeze me? It’s the right’s fault our kids aren’t getting a decent education?

    HOw about the left replacing traditional schooling (reading, writing, arithmetic) with all their touchy feel bullshit. It is the left that wants to stop teaching our kids the basics and start teaching them not to lover everyone and have everyone love them. It’s the loons on ther left who even want to get rid of the grading systems in some school because it “hurt’s the self esteem of some students” wah wah wah…….god forbid students actually have to study more to do better…god forbid the kids are allowed to know that there are intellectual disparities among them….no we have to treat every kid as if he is a genius and make him believe he is one…. yeah these leftist goons are really teaching our kids about the real world……….

    it’s also the leftist nea and teacher’s unions that have a stranglehold on all that goes on in our public schools… they demand that we keep throing money at a failing public education system and they’re so powerful that we do……

    the catholic school system spends less money per pupil and yet their students on avaerage perform better on standardized tests………

  • Clavos

    the catholic school system spends less money per pupil and yet their students on avaerage perform better on standardized tests………

    In fact, pretty much ANY church sponsored school, even the much-reviled Christian academies do a better job of teaching the three Rs for less money than the government monopoly schools.

    Private academies, though more costly, have always been better than public schools.

    Why do they all do better? They demand and get better qualified teachers. They instill discipline in the students, they keep score in the form of real (not on the curve) grades, and they don’t worry about the touchy-feely crap.

    Tuition costs prevent a lot of parents from choosing these schools for their kids, though many (especially the poorest, whose public schools are usually the worst) would like to.

    A good school voucher system, which has been proposed a number of times, would go a long way to improving public schools by forcing them to compete. Unfortunately, the teachers unions are adamantly opposed to this idea. They couch their opposition in noble terms, but it really boils down to their fear of competition and of losing their grip on the teaching profession.

    And BTW, America has allegedly been “falling flat on its face in the teaching of science” since before the Russkies put up Sputnik in 1957, yet our science and engineering schools are full of foreign students…wonder why?

  • http://absent-mind.blogspot.com/ Jet in Columbus

    You’re constant misinformed right-wing spam can be so cute at times…to bad this isn’t one fo them.

  • Clavos

    Trenchant, hard-hitting rebuttal there, Jet.

  • http://absent-mind.blogspot.com/ Jet in Columbus

    It makes about as much sense as anything you’ve posted, and is a lot less wordy

  • Clavos

    Uh huh….

  • http://absent-mind.blogspot.com/ Jet in Columbus

    Trenchant, hard-hitting rebuttal there,Clavos

  • Clavos

    You haven’t said anything to me that needs rebutting, Jet.

  • http://absent-mind.blogspot.com/ Jet in Columbus

    Nor have you, by the way we’ve joined forces-you and I-to fight the kiddie porn spam on fresh comments, so that’s something.

    We are the worllllllld
    We are the chillllldren

  • Clavos

    Word, Dude.

  • Eric Olsen

    I don’t think broadcast decency standards have a lot to do with educational attainment, but a large part of why the public school educated score lower than private schools is that the public schools are required (to attempt) to teach everyone whereas private schools can pick and choose and have more latitude in terms of restrictions and enforcement, etc.

    I thik it’s fine for the government to have braodcast standards, but they need to be enforced fairly and uniformly, which they have not been in the past.

  • http://absent-mind.blogspot.com/ Jet in Columbus

    FINALLY an intelligent voice!

  • Arch Conservative

    The real reason that priavte, especially catholic, schools do better than publiv schools is as clavos pointed out. They have much better teachers, the teach actual subjects ike math, science, language rather than touchy feely bullshit that is the standard fare in public schools, they expect more from their students and they know how to get more from their students.

    It has nothing to do with slective admission we’re talking about K-12 here not medical school. At most catholic schools the main consideration is wether or not tuition can be afforded.

    It’s nice to see that Jet is completely ignorant on this issue and instead of actually responding to any of the things clavos and I have said with reasoned counterpoints he says

    “You’re constant misinformed right-wing spam can be so cute at times…to bad this isn’t one fo them.”

    Why don’t you follow Eric Olsen’s example on how to correctly rrespond to someone you disagree with Jet. He clearly laid out the reasons why he disagrees with Clavos and I, directly addressing the very points we brought up.

    Your post was just a waste of space.

    You’re getting to be almost as bad as MCH Jet….and that’s company no one wants to keep.

  • http://absent-mind.blogspot.com/ Jet in Columbus

    You know what Arch? You’re right. I concede…

    I give up…

    I’m beaten and I know it…

    I should just be a man admit I’m wrong and you’re right…

    I want to be just like you, and be able to ignore anything I don’t agree with and still hold my head high.

    I want to be able to stand in a room of hundreds and be able to proclaim in a loud voice with confidence that I’m the only one right in the hall.

    I’m jealous at your great ability to be able to judge instantly all that is wrong thinking, wrong speaking and wrong in attitude and patriotism.

    I wonder at your knack for coming right to the point and being logical and true to your thoughts as you set them down here, and yet somehow you never manage to insult anyone or make them feel that they are lower than you.

    I have no business being apart of American Society.

    I will campaign in the mid-term elections so that both houses of Congress are 100 percent Republican and that anything that our fine Presiden Bush wants, he gets… because he deserves nothing less from a loyal American Public.

    I need to have myself reeducated in the right way of thinking-Your way of thinking.

    I have no clue as to what is right and wrong, but I’ll henceforth follow only your example

    I have no business thinking that anyone would listen to my leftist convoluted ranting because it is Unamerican to have any thoughts but yours.

    I’ve come over to you way of thinking.

    George Bush is the greatest president who ever lived and we should all stand behind his mighty leadership.

    If he says jump we should all ask how high.

    I feel filthy that I didn’t go to church today.

    I can’t write a single thing that is correct and true and deserved to be silenced forever

    You’re so full of shit I can smell your self-righteous stench all the way here in Ohio, and I’ve got my windows closed.

  • Arch Conservative

    MMMM hmmm

    there goes Jet again rambling about stuff that no one mentioned or gives a damn about.

    What makes you incapable of responding to the points in others posts Jet? I mean you’re still not offering anything meaningful about the broadcast decency issue or the differences between public and private schools.

    That’s me all right ignoring everyone I disagree with… it’s not like I addressed any of the differing views Mr. Olsen offered in writing my last post is it?

    You’ve become a joke! I guess from now on I will have to ignore all of your posts as I do MCH’s.

  • http://absent-mind.blogspot.com/ Jet in Columbus

    No your absolutely right, I’m too stupid to match wits with you, now… what was Eric talking about, and thank you for staying so skillfully on topic.

  • http://www.1bigdragon.blogspot.com Peter J

    I don’t even remember what this entry started out as! I had to go back to remind myself of the subject matter, Eric wrote a fine article about the FCC which is rightfully so a very controversial issue. There were , at first, a couple of remarks seriously addressing the conflicting facets of the article and then, all of a sudden it all just crumbled like the tower of Babel! I’ve seen almost all of the same people who respond with intelligence and consideration to the subject matter, making excellent points for both or many sides of an argument. I’ve also watched some pretty well thought out articles quickly turn to a sideshow as everyone chooses up sides (usually liberal and republican) and do exactly as politicians do, engage in childhood badgering and make complete assholes out of themselves and disrespect the author.
    This is a political zone and I find no humor in the state of the government today! We can at least respect ourselves and each other by contributing something of substance along with that ‘O Yea? Well piss on U2!!’ We can still call each other names, just try to add something of substance along with it! (‘Would you like some Fuck You with that First Amendment?’)
    Let the government play like little retarded children who engage in nothing but name calling and never accomplish a fucking thing other than demonstrating their effeteness. How about we show a little self respect and just feel pity for the politicians.

  • Nancy

    The problem with TV & other forms of ‘entertainment’, cable or otherwise, which use publically-owned frequencies, is that they will always go for the lowest common denominator (and I mean ‘common’ in all sense of the word), as well as for whatever will provide the most sensation. If they could show snuff films & get away with it, they would. I don’t want anyone dictating to me what to watch, but at the same time I find less and less being available which is quality programming, to the point where I finally refused to renew my cable (without which, in my area, there is no TV at all). Even the History, Animal Planet, etc. channels weren’t enough to make up for the lack of decent & interesting programming elsewhere. I also found offensive the unrelenting, mindless, all-encompassing advertising, especially the marketing targeting kids. This, to me, should be absolutely and unequivocally illegal: no marketer should be allowed to target anyone under the age of 16, I don’t care if the product is cereal, toys, or anything else.

    Usually I disagree on general principle with anything Junior says, but I have to concur here, it is the parents’ responsibility to ultimately control what their kids watch; however, it is the industry’s responsibility to provide at least a modicum % of shows that are both decent and contain quality material. IF they want to continue to use public airwaves, that is.

  • Arch Conservative

    You hit the nail on the head Nancy. It is the dumbing down of America. We’ve gone from Donna Reed and Father Knows best to fear Factor and Jackass. From Ed Sullivan to Howard Stern…This is prgoress?
    I think Darwin would be spinning in his grave if he could see what we have evolved into. Survival of the dumbest, the most crass, vulgar and ostentacious.

    Concepts like shame, self restraint, and modesty are foreign in today’s “progressive” anything goes culture. We’re no longer allowed to judge the conduct of our fellow citizens lest we be labelled “ignorant” or “narrow minded.”

    But hey we made it that way Nancy. If we didn’t buy into this garbage allowing the people that put it out there to make money it wouldn’t be the norm.

  • Nancy

    This goes along with my prior comments on other threads about Americans being unable to think critically, because they’re trained from birth these days to be mindless consumers, hence, easier to handle by those at the top. But I like conspiracy theories.

  • gonzo marx

    interesting that you bring up “Donna Reed” and “Father knows best” , etc….

    talk about “dumbing down”…those shows were good clean “fun” but about as thought provoking as paste, and about as grounded in Reality as Sesame Street…i might even postulate that Sesame Street has MORE correlation to the real world than either Father knows best or Leave it to Beaver

    why is it that so many (notbably those too young to have been there) are just itching to get to the “good old days” which they NEVER fucking experienced, rather than experience what is here…now?

    i know, silly and rhetorical…

    ok…how about comparing “Father knows Best” and “All in the Family” for contrasting progressive versus conservative TV for social relevance, thought provocation, and lessons in Humanity

    now..do we need to get into the entertainment value as a function of free market Capitalism?

    what is “conservative” in today’s idiom , about Censorship?

    doesnt’ “personal Responsibility” start in the home…with the Parents, and the TV fucking remote?

    just sharing

    Excelsior?

  • Nancy

    Yuh, I was going to say, FKB & Leave It To Beaver weren’t exactly what I had in mind, while All In The Family & the original Sat. Night Live certainly were; but that sin can be laid at the doorstep of nervous, chicken-shit Suits who preferred pap over anything remotely intellectual – probably because they themselves couldn’t understand it.

  • methuselah

    If GWB was REALLY interested in broadcast decency he’d limit commercial time each hour to much less than the 20 minutes per 60 minutes that currently obtains. He’d restrict commercials to telling the truth about products and make lies subject to civil prosecution.

    He’d raise the prices of frequency allocation to get significant federal tax revenue from those privileged to own broadcast licenses.

    He’d allow citizens to use Low Power FM (LPFM) as a means to broadcast alternative broadcast offerings (as the FCC regs now stand, only ‘an established organization’ can get a LPFM license, thus barring an individual from broadcasting, say, Handel Oratorios 24 hors a day at low power for a community).

    But he’s not interested in any of these issues which are of import to citizens. What he IS interested in is supporting the broadcast monopolies and oligopolies that dominate the airwaves and which are voluntarily slaved to the administration. As a sop to public concern he gets indignant and makes a big noise over some female showing her teat on TV. I’m underwhelmed. To anyone interested in seeing TV mammaries, most of the European soap commercials display them during primetime. How stupid and backward we americans have become.

  • Arch Conservative

    talk about “dumbing down”…those shows were good clean “fun” but about as thought provoking as paste,

    what’s so thought provoking about jackass, fear factor, the ann nicole show, anything at all on mtv, the simple life etc…..

    while fkb and donna reed may not have answered any of life’s great questions at least they weren’t parade of idiots trying to “outsupid” each other

    all in the family is a good example of a show that made you think but did it in a classy way..but that show is 30 years old so i wouldn’t exactly call it topical

    the fact is that there are some decent shows on tv today that make you think without being crass and vulgar but most people don’t watch them.. they’d rather watch paris hilton milk a fucking cow…….95% of the shows on tv today are complete crap and the majority of us are fine with this…… ask the average adherent of pop culture which side won the civil war and they’ll probably give you the answer “we did” but ask them what happened on the real world last week and they can fill you in in great detail…

    it would be funny is it wasn’t so fucking sad……..

    censorship isn’t the way to go because some people are beyond help….. the type of people who instead of doing their own research.. would vote for a presidentaial candidate because p. diddy told them to at rock the vote

    this phenomena is especially rampant young people.. college kids…….. countless college students who voted for john kerry didn’t the first thing about him…. their motivation was that bush was the establishment….. kerry was the liberal riding in on his white horse.. to bring change … to make the world a better place………. to spread pixie dust and happy feelings the world over……. yeah power to the people …………war for oil……..

    yeah smoke another bowl and shut the fuck up you fucking brain dead liberal hippy groupthink clone!

  • JustOneMan

    Gonzo and I agree on something????

    Parents need to control what comes into their house..not the government…when you have 5 and 6 year old watching “Wil and dis Grace”, “Sex in the City” and “Desperate Housewives”..then giving their kids money to buy “50 Cent” records what to you expect?

  • Baronius

    Peter – yup. There are a lot of sites that get nastier than this one, but blogcritics is just so petty in a predictable way. Every topic disintegrates into “creation science versus the gays”.

    The new legislation doesn’t change the role of government in regulating the publicly-owned airwaves. There is no intrusion into any of the pay media.

    TV and radio are different from other media, in that a person can receive them without cost, and without meaning to. I’ve never accidentally opened up a Hustler in front of my kids. It’s the parents’ duty to protect the children, but there’s no way do block transmission of radio signals, and the v-chip/ratings system for television is in its infancy.

  • http://www.elitistpig.com Dave Nalle

    I must have missed a beat. How are creation science and being gay contradictory to each other again? There are plenty of religious gays out there who believe in some version of the creation myth.

    Dave

  • JustOneMan

    “creation science versus the gays”

    OK for you Gay creationsist…what comes first the gay chicken or gay egg…hmmmmmmmmmm

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer.php?name=gonzo%20marx gonzo marx

    Baronius in comment #38 sez…
    *but there’s no way do block transmission of radio signals, and the v-chip/ratings system for television is in its infancy.*

    actually for Tv they can control it…on TV’s made after a certain date, the remote control can lock out channels…and newer models can block according to ratings…of course all digital satellite and cable can do it even better, but the tech is there from the consumer’s own equipment as well

    not being argumentative…just trying to be informative

    Excelsior?

  • Baronius

    True enough, Gonzo. The technology is available on the newer sets. Most everyone I know has bought a new TV in the last couple of years, so v-chips are widespread, I’m sure. The use of the chip and ratings hasn’t caught on though. Why not? I’d guess there are three reasons.

    – The rating system is inconsistent and confusing. Parents aren’t sure what TV11CV means, and it may mean a different thing on another channel. Or maybe the other channel doesn’t use ratings at all.

    – People are unaccustomed to the v-chip. Polls support this.

    – Dad doesn’t want to reprogram the TV every time CSI comes on. (CSI Miami is automatically blocked by the “bad actor” filter available on many new sets.) He may say that he wants parental controls, but they’re not as important as the ability to channel-surf.

    Certainly the first two problems can be alleviated over time. Standardization and simplification should diminish the first problem; familiarity, the second one. It’s anyone’s guess whether it will actually happen.

  • Eric Olsen

    a lot of interesting points – I think a lot of people want the government to participate in “saving them from themselves”

  • Diz

    “parents have the final responsibility over the television shows that their children watch, or the websites they visit, or the music they listen to. That’s a responsibility of moms and dads all across the country, to make sure their children are listening to or watching the right kind of programming.”

    FINAL RESPONSIBILITY

    So who’s responsibility is it when children go to school and are influenced by their peers who are allowed to watch, surf, or listen to whatever they want at home. Is it the parent’s responsibility…should they know better than to let their kids go to that school or be around those other spoiled brats.

    Who’s responsibility is it when your kid gets his ass beat on the school bus by some white trash punk who just got done watching Hulk Hogan body slam Macho Man Randy Savage with his alcoholic step-father?

    Anyone who is naive enough to think that the government shouldn’t play a role in controlling what goes on the air because its the parent’s responsibility must be living in Waco.

    And no I’m not sticking up for the parents who let their kids do whatever they want. It is indeed the parent’s responsibility to take control of what goes on in their home but it has to be understood that not everything can be regulated by the good moms and dads of america.

    When little johnny is watching the big game with his father and some slut’s titty pops out in his face somebody else needs to be held accountable.

    And no I’m not some groupthink pothead hippy who thinks GWB is at fault for everything wrong…I was just using that quote as a point of reference…hence FINAL RESPONSIBILITY

  • Nancy

    Well…some kid body-slams yours, you sue his little ass – AND his parents. People tend to wake up & pay attention once their bank accounts & wallets are engaged, even if their brain cells (what few they have, that is) aren’t.

    As for parental controls, how about the now-almost-defunct “No”. Most parents these days are so afraid to offend their kids by refusing them a nything, or maybe they’re afraid of damaging their little psyches, which is the biggest BS modern psychiatry has ever concocted, since once little Johnny grows up & gets into the big, bad world, I can guarantee he’s gonna find out faster than a speeding bullet that the world doesn’t give a damn about his little psyche or his self-esteem, and I think making them think while they’re kids that people will do so is just cheating them. Kind of like not demanding of ghetto kids that they learn standard English, as Bill Cosby pointed out. The one that ends up paying is the kid, usually for the rest of his life. It’s not a matter of cultural pride; it’s a matter of economic survival in a very harsh & unforgiving world.

  • Clavos

    I think a lot of people want the government to participate in “saving them from themselves”

    So true, Eric…Between that attitude and the propensity to sue for practically any reason, plus “Twinkie” defense strategies in criminal cases, it seems like few people are willing to take responsibility for their own actions these days.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer.php?name=gonzo%20marx gonzo marx

    Clavos sez…
    *it seems like few people are willing to take responsibility for their own actions these days.*

    well now…may i suggest that such is not the case

    might i put forward the proposition thart the vast majority of people DO take Responsibility, it’s just that such incidents are so common that they go without mention, rather, it is the blatanttransgressions that get all the “press” and color Perception for so many people

    think more of the hundred or more people you can name yourself…out of those, how many do take Responsibility as opposed to those who behave as you are suggesting?

    i know..the gut reflex reaction is to think “well, that is because all the people i know are normal..it’s the psychos that are like that..”

    exactly

    and psychos make up only a small portion of the population…sociopaths another minorty…and so on

    just a Thought

    Excelsior?

  • Clavos

    Some good points, Gonzo…I should have said “fewer” rather than “few.”

    I agree with you, most individual people still do shoulder responsibility, but I do think that in the last few decades we have seen an accelerating tendency to shift it away from the individual and to the government, as Eric wrote.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer.php?name=gonzo%20marx gonzo marx

    fair enuff, Clavos…

    i can go with that..i don’t think the societal rate has gone up as dramatically as some do…i do think the data may show that a higher percentage is reported than it used to be…

    but i’ll not quibble the details when a basic Understanding and concensus is reached…

    so the Question evolves to why? why are both the actual slackers of Responsibility risen…what factors enable it…and why is it more highly reported?

    something to ponder on the way to sleepy land…

    Excelsior?

  • Falstaff

    The PTC only claims 1 million members, yet it games the FCC system to make TV content decisions for Americans in 109 million TV households.

    1 million out of 109 million plus. If that’s democracy in action, I’d hate to live in a totalitarian dictatorship.

    Check out TV Watch, at http://www.televisionwatch.org, for a common sense voice of reason in this debate.

  • Clavos

    Gonzo,

    so the Question evolves to why? why are both the actual slackers of Responsibility risen…what factors enable it…and why is it more highly reported?

    Been looking at your comment since this morning. I’ve come up with no good answer to your question as to what factors have enabled the slackers (tossed some ideas around in my head and rejected them–still thinking), but the reporting thing is, I think, fairly easy, to wit: better communications and dissemination of information, especially since Gore invented the Internet :>) VBG…

    Seriously, the ‘net has obviously had an ENORMOUS effect on the dissemination of information worldwide—ask the Chinese govt.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer.php?name=gonzo%20marx gonzo marx

    yes Clavos, i agree cable, satellite and the Net have enormously expanded the amount of info available…

    i meant, out of all the things to “report”…why so much of this as a percentage of the total…why so much divisive drivel rather than insightful analysis and investigated information?

    just a wistful bit, i know…since the actuality revolves around market analysis by programming directors and pandering to demographics

    my Thought is that eventually you hit burn out wiht the least common denominator approach…the *marks* get *wise* to the long con…and with so much readily available, Quality may if not win, at least break even

    also , much Influence comes from the CRT due to the habit of some american parents to leave that TV as a babysitter for the last 2 generations (3 for some)…

    now, remove Civics class from public schools, many now don’t even teach calculus…Latin and Greek are long gone…where’s the training for critical thinking?

    ah well…enuff ranting…thanks for taking the Time on Thought Clavos…

    /bows, hand over fist

    Excelsior?

  • Clavos

    Gonzo,

    why so much divisive drivel rather than insightful analysis and investigated information?

    the actuality revolves around market analysis by programming directors and pandering to demographics

    Asked and answered….sadly, truth.

    my Thought is that eventually you hit burn out wiht the least common denominator approach…the *marks* get *wise* to the long con…and with so much readily available, Quality may if not win, at least break even

    Maybe. Not much evidence of it yet, though (of the quality winning, I mean).

    also , much Influence comes from the CRT due to the habit of some american parents to leave that TV as a babysitter for the last 2 generations (3 for some)…

    Absolutely true, and perhaps the root cause of the ‘dumbing down’ phenomenon–also ties in with the marketing analysis/demographics point.

    now, remove Civics class from public schools, many now don’t even teach calculus…Latin and Greek are long gone…where’s the training for critical thinking?

    There’s very little any more–also a result of ‘dumbing down.’ Hell, they don’t even teach reading well anymore. My mother-in-law is a professor of English Lit–every quarter, in addition to her lit courses, she is required to teach one class of Remedial English for incoming Freshmen–essentially a reading course–in COLLEGE!

    Back to the point about accepting responsibility:

    One phenomenon that I think has contributed much to this is the way that both the sociologists and psychologists/psychiatrists have attempted to explain bad behavior in terms of bad and/or deprived childhoods and other sociological influences beyond the control of the individual. There may well be some validity to these ideas, but they also unfortunately do absolve the individual from responsibility.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer.php?name=gonzo%20marx gonzo marx

    interesting take..but i ain’t buying any kind of “absolution” from Responsibility…

    such diagnostic prognostications may help inform or explain why said Individual(s) chose to behave the way they did…

    but that does NOT in ANY way absolve them from making the Choice or accepting the responsibility for the consequences

    your mileage may vary

    Excelsior?

  • Clavos

    It doesn’t absolve them in reality, I agree. But in the mind of the individual it does create an attitude of “it’s not my fault, I kill people because my father beat me.” etc. etc.

  • http://www.co2emissions.org.uk Hoggle

    Sure, they can watch a thousand murders a day, because that’s just a natural part of life, but god forbid they should see a woman’s nipple! Don’t you know that’s used to feed babies! It will warp their minds and send them into therapy for the rest of their lives!

%d bloggers like this: