Politico: Liberal Ex-FCC Leaders Want 'Redskins' Team Name Banned as a TV Obscenity

Proving that liberalism is moving the entire world of profanity into the realm of supporting what they see as embattled minorities – like the gay F-bomb – several old liberal hands at the Federal Communications Commission now want the word “Redskins” to be treated like an obscenity.  “XXXskin is the most derogatory name a Native American can be called. It is an unequivocal racial slur,” they proclaimed in a letter to Redskins owner Daniel Snyder.

But the Brooks Boliek report in Politico has a major factual omission in it. Men who signed this letter, like former FCC chairman Reed Hundt and former commissioner Jonathan Adelstein, routinely hated identifying anything as indecent on television before deciding the word “Redskins” was.

Dan Isett of the Parents Television Council informed me on Friday that Hundt gave a talk in 2005 titled “Regulating Indecency: The FCC’s Threat to the First Amendment.”

Hundt was outraged anyone would find indecency at the Super Bowl with the Janet Jackson breast flash. It was “sad to say a backwards journey of a million miles begins with a single (albeit silly) step.”  That’s right: Hundt found a boob-flash on the biggest TV show of 2004 far less offensive than the word “Redskins.”

In it, he smelled sexual McCarthyism: “The first is that the FCC has generated the biggest threat to the First Amendment faced by the electronic media since the McCarthy era because it seeks to limit television viewers’ freedom of choice.”

Meanwhile Adelstein ruled the terrible and short-lived Fox show “Keen Eddie” wasn’t indecent in 2003: “Yet, whether a program is suitable for our children is not the standard that as Commissioners of this agency we must apply. Certainly, there is a great deal of material that is
not directed towards children and that many may find objectionable or in bad taste, yet the material does not rise to the level of being indecent.”

As Brent Bozell reported at the time:

"Keen Eddie" featured a storyline wherein a band of thugs trafficking in horse semen hires a prostitute to have sex with a horse in order to extract its semen. The script matches the plot, as when the prostitute objects and is told, "You're a 40-year-old filthy slut; you'll do anything."

This scene is less offensive to children than the word “Redskins.” Shouldn’t Politico round out its coverage of this to underline the funhouse illogic of this anti-Redkskins argument?

Tim Graham
Tim Graham
Tim Graham is Executive Editor of NewsBusters and is the Media Research Center’s Director of Media Analysis