Apparently MSNBC's Chris Matthews doesn't want Catholics involved in the political process at all - especially when it comes to abortion. Earlier this month the "Hardball" host declared "The clergy should stay off Capitol Hill." Last night, he accused Thomas Tobin, bishop of Providence, Rhode Island, of "telling public officials how to set public policy," "stepping beyond moral teaching," and "basically assuming an authority" because the bishop requested that Rhode Island Democrat Rep. Patrick Kennedy not take communion due to his support for abortion.
Matthews' based his accusations on a portion of a speech on religion delivered by then Sen. John F. Kennedy in which he stated:
I believe in an America that is official neither Catholic, Protestant, nor Jewish, where no public official either requests or accept instructions on public policy from the Pope, the National Council of Churches, or any other ecclesiastical source, where no religious body seeks to impose its will, directly or indirectly, upon the general populace or the public acts of its officials.
Bishop Tobin briefly responded that the Church does not want to "dictate what the public policy should be in the United States from a purely Catholic doctrinal point of view," but "what [it] is trying to do, most of all, is instill good human values but also have Catholics who are in political office be faithful to the dictates of the Church and the dictates of their conscience and the teachings of the Church."
When your rights and responsibilities as a parent come in conflict with the liberal education establishment, who wins? Parents in Ames, Iowa just found out, and it’s not them.
Over the weekend, the Ames Library Board voted 6 -1 to allow the continued display and distribution of the magazine Sex, Etc. in the teen section of the public library. Sex Etc. is a free periodical written “by teens, for teens,” and published by Answer, a sex education advocacy group based at Rutgers University.
Local parent Joyce Bannantine noticed the magazine display, which encourages teens to take a free copy, in the teen section of the library. After flipping through it, Bannantine started a petition to have the library remove the display and to treat Sex, Etc. like any other periodical. Library Director Art Weeks, and ultimately the Library Board, disagreed.
So what had Bannantine and more than 100 petition signers so upset? After all, Sex, Etc. is a journal published under the auspices of a respected university, with sex education as its subject. "I thought it was too graphic for the age," Bannantine told local TV news KCCI. "Most of the kids that use the teen section are 12, 13 and maybe 14."
"American Idol" runner-up Adam Lambert's vocals weren't top-notch at last night's American Music Awards, but nobody really noticed. How could they, given his over-the-top and in-your-face sexual choreography?
Lambert's act during the show, aired on ABC, featured male dancers on leashes, an open-mouth kiss between Lambert and his male keyboardist, and simulated oral sex, both male-on-male and female-on-male.
Naturally, boundary-pushing Hollywood writers hailed Lambert's performance.
"As a TV viewer, I thought Lambert's performance was a gas, a delight, a blast of brash vulgarity in the midst of ordinary vulgarity," wrote Entertainment Weekly's Ken Tucker.
On today's CNN Newsroom, anchor Kyra Phillips went after the kids who supposedly bully a 10-year-old boy who refuses to say the Pledge of Allegiance because homosexual marriage isn't widely accepted. Some of his classmates allegedly call him names. Phillips's weapon of choice was name calling:
And a message to you boys who are bullying Will, shame on you. It's obvious you are jealous that Will is smarter and more well spoken than you are. Hopefully one day you will grow up and realize that you were being the wads, dork wads.
Phillips didn't say how she knows that Will is smarter and more well spoken than his purported tormentors. On Monday, she reported that Will is "a terrific kid." So what makes him so smart and terrific?
Megan Fox has a real distaste for "Middle America". Those darned hillbillies in fly-over country just don't seem to go for blockbuster lesbian slash ‘em up soft-core porn flicks. What gives?
Fox is blaming Middle America for her potentially career-breaking flop of a horror movie "Jennifer's Body." Asked why it was such a pitiful failure, Fox explained, "the movie is about a man-eating, cannibalistic lesbian cheerleader, and that pretty much eliminates middle America."
Oh my, what ignorant and close-minded folks these Middle Americans must be that they wouldn't want to sit through 90 minutes of that. Really, what is the film industry coming to when Americans won't pay ten bucks to see one half-naked pinup model devour another?
Leave it to ABC and its obsession with alternate sexuality to characterize being a male or a female as a "difficult decision." Introducing an interview featuring Chastity (now Chaz) Bono on Nov. 19, "Good Morning America's" Diane Sawyer said, "There can be no decision that you make that is more complex and difficult than gender identification."
Bono explained the hardships of undergoing a sexual "transformation" and the "journey into manhood" to an extraordinarily sympathetic Chris Cuomo, saying, "Gender is between your ears, not between your legs."
This interview only adds to a long list that details ABC's fascination with the sexually bizarre. In July 2009, CMI released a study that found that ABC news programs had featured 76 segments about sexual activity in the past six months. Most of the reports related to political sex scandals or crime cases that contained a sexual element, but 11 promoted alternative sexual arrangements, such as gender changes and, even more disturbing, objectum sexualization - having romantic relationships with objects like F-15 fighter jets and the Eiffel Tower.
Here is more proof there is a vast chasm between Fox News and Fox Entertainment in Hollywood. In Wednesday night’s episode of Glee, a heartless Christian dad character is – of course – a big Glenn Beck watcher. The biggest liberal joke on the series is the pregnant cheerleader Quinn who leads the "Celibacy Club," who is preparing for the chastity ball, but the secret of her pregnancy gets out at the dinner table.
I don’t have the precise Beck quote, but it was an "ooh, Glenn Beck’s on" moment. TV Squad summarizes: "But the whole thing brought to light a lot about Quinn's home life: her dad watches Glenn Beck, is a heartless loser, and her mom won't stand up for her. That's all the important stuff."
In fact, she is thrown out of the house, because that’s apparently what Beck-watching Christians do when their teens get pregnant. They’re uninvolved, clueless alcoholics who don’t really know their children.
Headline wording choice can set the tone for liberal bias, and a November 18 Washington Post Style front-pager is a classic example.
Profiling Pentecostal preacher Bishop Harry Jackson, the Post titled staffer Wil Haygood's story "Seeking to put asunder," an obvious allusion to Jesus's declaration about the holy nature of matrimony (Matthew 19:4-6 KJV):
And he answered and said unto them, Have ye not read, that he which made [them] at the beginning made them male and female, And said, For this cause shall a man leave father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife: and they twain shall be one flesh? Wherefore they are no more twain, but one flesh. What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder.
Of course, that scriptural passage succinctly illustrates Jackson's point: Christian doctrine regarding marriage is that "from the beginning" God's design was one man and one woman in a "one flesh" union, but the effect of the headline's allusion is the same. The paper is portraying Jackson as a man who aims to "put asunder" loving, committed gay couples who are "married."
On Nov. 9, CW's "Gossip Girl" featured a threesome, which included the not-so-Disney-anymore Hilary Duff. The show depicted threesomes as a normal, expected event in a college student's life. But that wasn't crass enough for Entertainment Weekly's Tim Stack, who said that the threesome was too "chaste."
"It was basically no more risqué than a game of spin the bottle," Stack lamented.
After this week's episode, though, which featured graphic flashbacks of the threesome, Stack has declared that "Gossip Girl" is "back up the quality ladder."
"The flashbacks to the threesome were waaaay more hot than anything in last week's much-hyped episode," he said. "I wonder if the Parents Television Council tuned in last night."
Stack went on to say that "Gossip Girl not only entertains, it teaches."
"We also learned a much repeated rule of threesomes," he said. "The third person is always supposed to be a stranger!"
Openly gay actor Ian McKellen recently told Details magazine that he proudly defaces Bibles left in hotel nightstands, ripping out pages containing verses which condemn homosexual behavior. USA Today's Leslie Miller picked up on this yesterday for the paper's "Faith & Reason" blog, after spying a blog post by colleague Barbara De Lollis in a November 16 post for her Hotel Check-In blog for USA Today.
For her part, De Lollis relayed the news item and wondered, "Could word of McKellen's habit spark a movement?" De Lollis went on to ask:
On his Nov. 16 program, Beck responded to the "South Park" interpretation of him - that he wasn't making accusations, but phrasing them in the form of a question. The show's character Eric Cartman played a spoof of Beck in which he railed against his school's president, Wendy Testaburger. Beck maintained he wasn't making the "accusations" in the form of a question - but playing the words of the "accused" themselves.
"Have we gotten to a place you can't ask questions?" Beck asked. "What were my crazy accusations or questions? Well, the accusation was that Van Jones was a communist revolutionary," Beck said. "I didn't describe him that way. In his own words he described himself that way. He was a 9/11 Truther. He was forced to step down. Was it that the administration was using NEA as a propaganda arm for the administration? That was a question. We played tapes of the call with Yosi Sargent and Yosi Sargent had to step down."
CNN on Monday featured a fifth grade student who is refusing to say the Pledge of Allegiance in his classroom until gays and lesbians have equal rights.
Not surprisingly, he was treated with far greater respect by the cable news network than Tea Party and town hall meeting protesters were earlier in the year.
The boy and his father appeared on CNN's "American Morning," and John Roberts began the segment:
A 10-year-old boy from Arkansas is taking a stand by sitting down. Will Philips is refusing to pledge allegiance to the flag in his fifth grade classroom until there really is, as the pledge says, liberty and justice for all. He says until gays and lesbians have equal rights.
During the interview, the boy's father accurately noted, "Well, actually before we heard from anybody, my first thought was oh, my God, this is the type of thing you see on CNN" (video embedded below the fold with transcript, h/t NBer SkipperMLM):
It’s a sad state of affairs. There is absolutely no barrier of sexual behavior that TV network executives aren’t willing to cross in a desperate gambit for ratings. There also seems be to no sleazy line that a squeaky-clean teenage TV star or pop star won’t cross to "break out" into grown-up stardom.
Both of these maxims were proven again by the CW show "Gossip Girl" with a group-sex plot. Its November 9 episode depicted three friends completing a list that was supposedly printed in their college newspaper: "The 15 Things Every College Student Must Do Before Graduating." Number 11 was "Have a Threesome." And so they did.
One of the "liberated" college women in this three’s-a-crowd spectacle was actress Hilary Duff, who earned millions as a teenager as the star of "Lizzie McGuire" on the Disney Channel and in Disney movies. Millions of impressionable children idolized her. They still do – except that she’s a different kind of role model now.
How much do lefties dislike Glenn Beck? So much that the vitriol has bled over into low-rent, soon-to-be-obsolete publications like Playboy magazine.
In the December 2009 issue of Playboy, Thomas Frank "takes down" the Fox News Channel host by analyzing the conservative movement and how Beck rose to prominence. Frank, with an obvious need to meet a high-word count in mind, attempts to dismantles Beck by attacking his Christmas book, "The Christmas Sweater" and his other books, his admiration for Thomas Paine, his fear the U.S. Constitution is being trampled upon and his activist efforts to curb this intrusion by combating socialism, communism and other ideologies that could be deemed un-American.
A petulant Washington Post columnist -- who two months ago insisted "Reality Makes Gay Marriage Debate Obsolete" -- took to her computer yesterday to hack out a screed against the Catholic Archdiocese of Washington, painting the Church as "uncharitable and cruel" reactionaries, playing "political hardball with the District" and literally throwing the homeless out into the cold November rain.
The Style section of the Washington Post isn’t exactly a repository of old-fashioned small town values, which made staff writer Monica Hesse’s Nov. 12 article that much more surprising.
Her piece: “Publicly, a whole new lewdness,” related the stories of commuters, airline passengers and others exposed to “secondhand smut” – that is, people in the uncomfortable position of having neighbors watching porn in public on laptops and BlackBerrys.
“But the increasing popularity of laptops and handheld devices, and the prevalence of wireless Internet access, means there’s a greater chance of becoming a bystander to a complete stranger's viewing proclivities,” Hesse wrote.
One anecdote involved a woman who was on a long flight with her young children, when “her friendly seatmate cued up a cartoon on his laptop. Her four children were enthralled; she hoped listening in might keep them occupied. Then the cartoon characters started doing things that cartoon characters should not be doing. Naked things …”
Who says Larry King only throws softballs to guests? If you're a conservative, the CNN host has a wicked fastball.
Former Miss California Carrie Prejean appeared on the Nov. 11 "Larry King Live" to promote her new book, "Still Standing." Tension ran deep, with Prejean accusing the host of being "inappropriate" and at one point, taking off her microphone and threatening to walk-off the set.
King also blindsided Prejean, who famously spoke out against same-sex marriage in the Miss USA pageant last April, with a caller who asked her, "I'm a gay man and I love pageants. I'm sure that you, Carrie, have got great gay friends that helped you possibly win. What would you give them as advice if they wanted to get married?"
Since Friday's massacre at Fort Hood, NewsBusters has been covering the efforts of several news outlets, including the New York Times, to warn of Muslim persecution in America.
This is quite a departure from the treatment offered other religious groups by the Times, particularly the paper's disgraceful coverage of Mormon persecution at the hands of rabid protestors in California.
Back on November 4, 2008, when gay marriage was outlawed for the second time by popular vote in the Golden State, angry protestors stormed the streets. Word quickly spread that Mormons had played a big role in getting the ban to pass prompting gay activists to attack Mormon citizens in fits of rage.
Unlike now, the Times wasn't worried about protecting a religious group from an angry backlash. Quite the contrary, when rumors of the Mormon influence on the proposition grew, the Times was more than willing to actively build the case against them.
On November 15 of that year, the paper used prominent space on its front page to print a hit piece titled "Mormons Tipped Scale in Ban on Gay Marriage."In the middle of a literal culture war on the streets of California, the Times thought it wise to convince gays and lesbians angered by the proposition's passage that Mormons were single-handedly responsible:
On Nov. 9 CW's teen-targeted "Gossip Girl" featured a threesome, portraying it as a normal, expected event in a college student's life.
The episode depicted three friends completing a list that was supposedly printed in their college newspaper: "The 15 Things Every College Student Must Do Before Graduating." Number 11 was "Have a Threesome."
On Nov. 10, the day after the episode aired, Entertainment Weekly commented on the "Gossip Girl's" threesome, saying, "The whole thing was pretty chaste. Aside from a shot of them all in bed together in the end, it was basically no more risqué than a game of spin the bottle."
What Entertainment Weekly doesn't grasp (or perhaps doesn't want to) is that it's not about how graphic the scene was or wasn't. It's the fact that the show was promoting the idea as normal and even expected.
According to actress Sandra Bernhard, no "kid is going to watch something about sex and then run out immediately and do it."
Bernhard commented during a Nov. 5 segment on CNN's "Joy Behar Show" that focused on the upcoming threesome episode of CW's "Gossip Girl."
Behar asked Bernhard and her fellow panelists, actresses Aisha Tyler and Fran Drescher, what they thought about the Parents Television Council call for CW affiliates to pull the episode which reportedly contains a threesome scene.
"I don't think any kid is going to watch something about sex and then run out immediately and do it. I mean they may be titillated by it, they may find it, oh this is ooh," claimed Bernhard.
On the day after the Republican Party showed gains in a few statewide elections and with key health care and cap-and-trade legislation pending, MSNBC went back to the well to do what it does best - attack the character of one of the network's favorite targets, former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin.
With condescension reminiscent of Peter Jennings - in 1994 the ABC anchor characterized the Republican takeover of Congress as the electorate having a "temper tantrum" - Lindenberger portrayed same-sex marriage opponents as stubborn children, saying, "Maine voters insisted on having their say on an issue that simply will not go away." Rather than just report and analyze the outcome, the article simultaneously sympathized with gay activists and emphasized, by way of many pro-gay quotes, the futility of fighting against an "incredible campaign" that simply wants justice.
Maine defenders of traditional marriage only had one quote in the nearly 1,200-word article: "What's the hurry [for gay marriage]?" That's six words, if you count the brackets.
The article also reassured same-sex marriage proponents that this rejection will leave no lasting scars:
On Nov. 3, 53 percent of Maine voters rejected a six-month-old law redefining the state's definition of marriage to include same-sex couples. The next day, an AP article about the vote read more like a direct mail appeal for the Human Rights Campaign than a news piece.
Headlined "Maine Voters Repeal Law Allowing Gay Marriage," the article called the repeal of the legislation that granted marriage for same-sex couples a "stinging defeat" for the gay rights movement and focused almost exclusively on the reactions of gays and lesbians. Framed around the thwarted wedding plans of a lesbian couple, the article contained three quotes from supporters of same sex-marriage and only one from an advocate for traditional marriage.
"Cecelia Burnett and Ann Swanson had already set their wedding date," began the article. "When they joined about 1,000 other gay marriage supporters for an election night party in a Holiday Inn ballroom, they hoped to celebrate the vote that would make it possible."
Profits, not the killing of unborn children, are the "real immorality" of abortion, according to "View" panelist Joy Behar.
Behar expressed her unique view of morality during the Nov. 3 "Hot Topics" discussion about Abby Johnson, a Texas Planned Parenthood director who resigned from her post last month after seeing an abortion on an ultrasound.
Johnson explained to the local Texas CBS affiliate that Planned Parenthood had been pressuring her to focus on abortion, not pregnancy prevention because abortions brought in more money than family planning services.
ABC's "View" host Barbara Walters brought up Johnson's story, calling it "controversial" and Behar quickly denounced Planned Parenthood for making money off abortions. She called it "gross" and "obnoxious" before she stated, "I don't see abortions as a profit-making industry. I think that that is the real immorality of it."
"Should Anti-Gay Rights Petition Signers Be Exposed?" asked a teaser headline [screencap shown at right] on CBSNews.com's front page.
"Hot Topic: Battle Rages in Washington State over Privacy of Petition Signers" the subheader read.
While the November 3 article itself by staffer Brian Montopoli was balanced -- giving room for a social conservative activist to defend keeping the names and addresses of signatories of the Referendum 71 petition from being made public -- the headline sets the tone for readers to see pro-traditional marriage backers in Washington State as folks motivated to deprive fellow citizens of their "rights."
So what does Referendum 71 actually do? According to Montopoli:
On his Nov. 2 broadcast, Olbermann accused Palin of forcing former GOP congressional candidate Dede Scozzafava out of the race for New York's 23rd Congressional District and said Palin should be charged with sexism for doing so.