Wednesday, April 21, 2004

The Code returns - to screen and life and garden apparently



Decency and morality have returned to the G&L Garden Center in Hartsville, Tenn., after a customer complained that some of the female lawn ornaments were revealing body parts as wantonly as Janet Jackson. And the males displayed a complete disregard for underpants. Thankfully, employees Angie Langford and Pam Gregory and their red sarongs saved the day. (from SF Chron DIP)

Hell, at least we know it's not just war photos. All images must be censored, whether conveyed on a big or small screen, through a camera lens, or even in person.

I'd like to write this off as "hey, it's TN," but I can't. Not when I see networks air commercials starting their favorite faces explaining to parents how to parent less and v-chip more. Not when I hear what I can assume is monolithic Clear Channel air commercials from "your friendly neighborhood radio station," explaining why satellite radio is bad because of all the naughty language and words "my 6 year old daughter could learn that I know I don't use."

Yes, self-censorship will always be preferable to government sponsored or dictated censorship. But they're all just preempting gov action - "no, please please, don't hurt us, we'll be better, we promise!"

Bullshit. People keep watching or listening to the "bad" shows - so no network will cut it. They'll just a) encourage V-chip use, b) attack each other as the "Real Offender," or c) drive viewers to pay cable - which will itself become a target sooner or later.

Yikes, people - let's keep our eye on the ball. There's so much freedom at stake here. I hate to rely on talking-point-ish, data-less arguments (I don't time to look or put a poll in the field), but I imagine there is significant cross over between those who want continued preemptive wars (because they'll keep coming after us - they hate us 'cause we're free!) and those who want statues and breasts covered, Stern off the air, gays not married, and books kept out of the hands of eager readers.

Freedom isn't free, indeed. Neither in cost, nor characteristics, these days.

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