On Feb 3, the Baltimore Ravens won their second Super Bowl championship to the ecstatic delight of Baltimoreans and Marylanders the state over. The jubilation was unfortunately sullied just minutes after the victory when Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco, with blatant disregard for the minds and futures of the youths watching at home, did the unthinkable—he said a dirty word on network television.
Now I know this is not the type of issue we Americans take lightly, and I completely understand the terror and rage we are all currently experiencing. I mean, how is this not going to change our world for the worse? But I implore you Baltimore, to please rest assured, the proper authorities are sweeping in with quickness and precision to make certain that the innocence of this nation, won’t be lost without a fight.
At the forefront of this latest battle in the ongoing war on decency is mighty conservative watchdog The Parents Television Council, an advocacy group over 100.000 Americans strong. The PTC regularly uses press releases, mass mailings and legal action to protect television viewers from profanity, sexuality, violent imagery, and of course, gay people.
The PTC is extra enraged right now because they already had to go to battle with CBS once this millennium for Super Bowl shenanigans. When the unspeakable horror of a partially exposed female breast tarnished the otherwise dignified and quaint tradition that is the Super Bowl half-time show in 2004, it was the PTC that spent years pressuring the Federal Communications Commission and the Supreme Court to bring justice to this "shocking (and) devastating" act of obscenity. Though former President George W. Bush signed the Broadcast Decency Enforcement Act in 2005, the Third Circuit Court of Appeals dropped the case in 2011 essentially declaring, "ah, who gives a [expletive]."
This time around the PTC is not going down so easily. President Joe Winter is zeroing in on CBS for allowing Flacco’s shame to air, declaring "enough is enough...the FCC must step up to its legal obligation to enforce the law, or families will continue to be blindsided."
I’m glad Winter reminded us of the FCC’s legal obligation. I mean, it’s one thing for a citizen advocacy group to put pressure on networks and advertisers, but thankfully there is indeed, also a government agency working to suppress the first amendment rights of private companies. God forbid we just allow home viewers to vote with Nielsen Ratings, for or against, curse words and boobs.
Though it’s sad that Baltimore’s Flacco is the catalyst in this current crusade against obscenity, we must be grateful that groups like the Parents Television Council are standing up for the real issues in this world. In an age where more and more of the human population is focusing on ending warfare, fighting starvation, and protecting human rights, it’s good to see that the struggle for the prohibition of cultural taboos that result in zero measurable consequences, is alive and well. After all, there aren’t just dirty words out there, we also have gays, atheists, and marijuana to worry about.