ABC television needs to be sent a different set of protest letters for their cowardly cancellation of Adam Lambert’s performance on Good Morning America. This time, the letters should be sent by a true cross section of America, people who, once in a while, actually take ideas like free speech, freedom of expression, and freedom of choice seriously.
ABC, you see, was sent some 1,500 letters by members of the Parents Television Council following Lambert’s homoerotic performance on the American Music Awards. By ABC’s own admission, that was something they considered a small number of complaints. Nevertheless, they suddenly got paranoid over a fringe group of censorious thugs like the PTC and suddenly cancelled Lambert’s scheduled appearance on GMA. What gives? Over a small number of protests??
The PTC’s own reaction to this, however, has been a display of their usual duplicity. According to this article, Dan Isett, the Director of Public Policy for the PTC, suddenly backpedaled from the group’s usual policy of advocating ever-more draconian and bizarre efforts at censoring broadcasting (the PTC are the yahoos who believe that shows like Ugly Betty and Lost and Law and Order are obscene and the government is justified in keeping them off TV). According to Isett, “the idea that he (Lambert) should be scrubbed from TV completely is not where we’re going.”
Yeah, right! The PTC are not in favor of censoring anyone…Sure, Danny, anyone with half a brain, or any passing familiarity with your scummy organization will even believe that for a second.
Blatant lies in the face of criticism and challenge are the PTC’s stock in trade. If one spends even a few moments looking over the PTC web page, they will be quickly overwhelmed by quote after quote, one article and essay after another, giving clear instruction and policy positions on how the group will fight to REMOVE various TV programs from the air because they deem such programming “obscene,” “filthy,” “sleazy,” “vulgar,” or “offensive.” They threaten to pressure advertisers to withhold support from TV shows until they are cancelled, yet a lying douche bag like Isett has the gall and the decency to say that censorship is “not where we’re going.”
But telling lies, even in the glaring media spotlight, has been a PTC specialty since its inception. The group’s founder, Brent Bozell, has threatened to publicly label advertisers as being complicit in murder for putting their commercials on professional wrestling programs that were proven to have contributed to children killing other children. NOT ONE SINGLE instance of a child killing another child has ever been proven to have been influenced by wrestling.
Bozell has also been less than perfectly honest about the political orientation of his group. The son of a former Joseph McCarthy speech writer, Bozell has repeatedly tried to claim – with the perfectly straight face of a sociopath – that the PTC is a nonpartisan organization and that he himself is not even a Republican. Yet on his bio on the PTC web page, he proudly claims to have been Pat Buchanan’s National Finance Chairman in 1992 and a one time president of the National Conservative Action Committee, which “helped elect dozens of conservative candidates over the past 10 years.” This is all on his web page! Check it out!!
As former pro wrestler Mick Foley writes so eloquently about Bozell in “Foley is Good: And the Real World is Faker than Professional Wrestling,” the PTC founder is “a charismatically challenged, lying sack of shit.”
But he’s not the only one of his kind at the PTC. The organization seems to draw pathological liars to its membership ranks like some kind of a magnet. The head of the New Jersey chapter of the group, one Crystal Madison, most often will say that she opposes censorship, but has told TV Newsday magazine that she is a PTC member to fight for a future where shows like Dexter and Family Guy will be “eradicated.” I don’t know, eradication kind of sounds like censorship to me. But those people who listen to my Culture Wars radio show will also know that Madison has been giving instructions to her supporters on how to pressure my college’s donors until the radio show of yours truly is removed from the air. Confronted about this, just like Isett, she backpedaled and claimed that financial pressure was not really an attempt at removing my show from the air. Yeah, Crystal, sure, we believe that!
Nevertheless, ABC television has chosen to cave in to the bully tactics of a group of transparent liars who represent values light years removed from the sentiments of mainstream America.