The gay left hates debate – especially the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation. They're furious that CNN Headline News offered balance and came to the Media Research Center's Culture and Media Institute for a negative opinion on homosexuality. That's apparently beyond the pale.
Mediaite reported that GLAAD succeeded in pressuring CNN into spiking an online poll that asked the question “Is the surge in gay TV characters 'bad for society'?” On the GLAAD blog, Aaron McQuade found it was "troubling" for CNN to allow dissent:
The report then goes on to give a troubling amount of airtime to anti-gay activist Dan Gainor from the Culture and Media Institute, who does believe that it’s “bad for society” to offer authentic depictions of the lives of LGBT people. He remarked that, “Hollywood has done a great deal of work causing acceptance in American culture for homosexuality.”
On Wednesday night's edition of Showbiz Tonight on CNN Headline News, anchor A. J. Hammer churned up the hype about Sarah Palin making an estimated $12 million. To analyze this haul, Hammer brought on Cathy Areu, creator of Catalina magazine (for Latina women) and a contributor to The Washington Post Magazine, and Rachel Zalis of Life and Style Weekly. But it was Areu who suggested Palin was a dumb and classless redneck:
HAMMER: Hey, ladies, my jaw dropped when I found out that Sarah Palin made an estimated $12 million since she left her job as Alaska`s governor because that was less than a year ago. And at that time, a lot of people thought she was making a huge mistake by leaving that post. Cathy, do you think that she`s in danger of losing that down-home image, that relatable image that really endeared her to a lot of people?
CATHY AREU: Sarah Palin could do no wrong for so many people. I mean, she is a female Larry the Cable Guy minus the class and intelligence.
Fox's family-friendly "American Idol" is headed down the tubes if Howard Stern and Perez Hilton have anything to do with it.
Stern, while now on XM Sirius Satellite Radio, dominated the public airwaves for more than 20 years as a shock jock. Regular discussions on his show revolved around celebrities' sexual proclivities, complete with explicit language. Strippers and porn stars were regular guests. As of 2005, the FCC had fined him more than any other radio broadcaster to the tune $2.5 million. He migrated to satellite radio to escape FCC rules.
Gossip blogger Hilton built his career by enhancing paparazzi shots of celebrities with crude white drawings of genitalia and bodily fluids and posting them on his site, PerezHilton.com, and outing gay celebrities. He injected politics into the Miss USA pageant last spring as a judge when he asked about same-sex marriage. He continually harassed former Miss California Carrie Prejean on his Web site after she expressed a belief in the traditional view of marriage in response to his question.
After "Idol" judge Simon Cowell, known for his brutal honesty, announced on Jan. 11 that this would be his last season as part of the wildly popular singing competition, Stern and Hilton both pitched themselves as his replacement, and entertainment journalists applauded.
Headline News “Showbiz Tonight” host A.J. Hammer began a Jan.14th segment with this little number: “So is Ann Coulter the worst guest ever or is she just plain good TV?” The question was plainly rhetorical, because Hammer’s mind was already made up. His two guests unambiguously disliked Coulter, and the three launched immediately into a brutal session of name-calling, never once entertaining a different opinion on the popular author.
Lisa Bloom, anchor of CNN’s “In Session” and PR flack Howard Bragman, author of the book, Where’s My Fifteen Minutes?, were unabashed in their disdain for the conservative pundit. Bloom called Coulter a “mean, nasty person” and likened her to the Grinch, saying her heart is “three sizes too small.”
Bragman was no fan of Coulter, either. “She’s the most obnoxious woman on TV; she relishes in her obnoxiousness.”
This segment comes after Coulter’s recent high-profile interviews on CBS’s “The Early Show”, NBC’s “Today” show, and ABC’s “The View.” Since Coulter’s interviews have made headlines all over the media, it should have been easy to find a dissenting opinion on the ‘disruptive’ guest. But instead, Hammer just hosted an echo chamber.
CNN Headline News' Showbiz Tonight host A.J. Hammer invited HGTV host Lauren Lake and Extra's Carlos Diaz on to the program yesterday to discuss Oprah Winfrey's refusal to book Governor Sarah Palin on her show.
Both Hammer and Lake teamed up on Diaz and bombarded him with why it was not a political decision for Oprah to refuse Palin on her show while endorsing Obama.
HAMMER: Carlos, it’s the Oprah Winfrey Show. She said what she was going to do. She sets the plate, and she’s sticking with it, so I don’t really get what the problem is.
DIAZ: No I agree. I agree, but my point is it’s tough to back one candidate and then completely ignore the Republican Party. I know she’s sticking to her guns, but still.
HAMMER: So because she’s Oprah Winfrey, it’s almost like a different set of rules apply?
Is an implicitly mild anti-Michelle Obama comment worse than an overt anti-Catholic remark? According to the CNN Headline News show "Showbiz Tonight" on Monday September 8, they apparently are. While they ignored Joy Behar’s inflammatory remarks comparing the saints to mental patients, they were all over Elisabeth Hasselbeck for revealing that Michelle Obama provided a list of forbidden questions. For the record, Hasselbeck said "unlike the wife of a political candidate who shall remain nameless, she didn't come with a list of topics we weren't allowed to touch."
Reliable Obama supporter and CNN contributor Roland Martin alleged Hasselbeck "gets her information from Sean ‘Little Bowl of Hate Hannity" and drinks "Hatorade." To provide some balance one guest said "she shouldn’t be shot." The one caller, Deborah from Georgia, pleaded for Hasselbeck's firing. Everyone’s complaint with "The View" co-host involved revealing what occurred behind the scenes with Michelle Obama.
Brent Bozell's culture column this week deals with Opie & Anthony's sick XM shock-jock routine about raping Condoleezza Rice (and raping Laura Bush "to death.") You may not be shocked, but Al Sharpton made no attempt to express his outrage at the XM sickos in defense of this black woman, despite how this routine is so much worse than the Don Imus "ho" comment (video is here):
Rev. Al Sharpton showed up to debate May 15 on the CNN Headline News program “Showbiz Tonight.” But he didn’t say a single word against Opie and Anthony or one word in defense of Condi Rice. He insisted that the Imus gaffe was much more offensive! “I think that these cases are different than Imus. Imus was a repeat offender that stood out, in a different situation...Imus’s situation cannot be compared to other arguments” about free speech, he said.
Friday on CNN Headline News' Showbiz Tonight, a segment was devoted to celebrities getting political. Host Sibala Vargas began with, "From coast to coast and TV movies and music, stars are speaking out loud and clear." The Dixie Chicks, Jon Bon Jovi, Pearl Jam, Merle Haggard and Paul Simon all oppose the war and the President, the program noted.
Rocker Neil Young, whose recent musical contributions include the toe-tapping ditty "Let's Impeach the President," was asked by Miss Vargas: "Are you concerned that some might think that you`re unpatriotic?" He replied, "Oh, no, I`m not concerned about that in the least. I feel like I`m exercising my right of free speech which is what our boys are fighting for the Iraqi people to have."
The controversial country rock singer Neil Young was interviewed on CNN’s “Showbiz Tonight” Tuesday evening (video link to follow). During the segment, Young talked about his new album which is largely devoted to anti-Bush and anti-war themes.
When CNN’s Sibila Vargas asked Young if impeachment, as discussed in his new song "Let's Impeach the President," was called for, Young responded:
“Yes, yes, I think it is. I think it`s called for, and so do a lot of other people. As a matter of fact, when I played in there for 100 people, they all stood up and gave me a standing ovation. There wasn`t one person that wasn`t standing. And we were looking for that kind of backing.”
As his answer ensued, Young made clear what this “backing” was:
The CNN Headline News show "Showbiz Tonight" led Monday night with controversy over the movie "V for Vendetta," and stomped hard on the idea that it was directed at the Bush administration. Host A. J. Hammer began with a promo: "On ‘Showbiz Tonight,’ the war in Iraq, the war on terror and the hottest movie in America. The shock and awe over 'V for Vendetta.' And the controversy. Is art imitating life? A political thriller where the hero is a terrorist. Is that really such a bad thing?"
Is this a rhetorical question? Or is Hammer auditioning for al-Jazeera International?
MRC's Michelle Humphrey tipped me off to the story. Hammer explained: "All right, let me tell you what happened this weekend. America had a big choice of movies. Here's the one they made No. 1: 'V for Vendetta.' This is a movie all about terrorism. This is a movie that raises some serious and unsettling questions about who should really be called a terrorist. One man's terrorist is another man's freedom fighter. A movie that has chilling allusions to everything from September 11 to government spying to terror bombings to the war in the Iraq. It`s a movie that opened just as we crossed yet another disturbing milestone in the struggle to end the seemingly unending war in Iraq. It`s enough to make critics and Showbiz Tonight ask, what's going on here?"