how media bias filters perception - II

Continuing the debate - Brian writes:

... I'm not about to tolerate my tax money being used to fund positively-biased proselytizing films for those religions, to be shown on PBS right in the middle of a period when we're trying to find solace in our cherished traditions while so much of the world we grew up with changes right out from under us. Now's a time when we need the facts, and the other facts that back them up-- not propaganda designed to be divisive and to further an agenda which is profoundly counter to the spirit upon which this country was founded.

This strikes me as quintessentially anti-American. What kind of PC nonsense is it to say that Christmas is a "special cultural time" that is somehow defiled by the mere presence of Islam? Apparently, I missed how vulnerable the holiday was to desecration while being distracted by the Mercedes Benz commercial using "Silent Night" as its jingle, the Coca Cola Corporation-designed Official Mascot of the holiday on every street corner (draped in the corporate colors), and the season-coordinated plotlines across all sitcoms of every major network.

People observing Kwanzaa, Hanukkah, and Eid have more spirituality and culture associated with this time of year than people whose entire concept of Christmas is "drape the house with lights, put the Bing Crosby CD in the 5 disc changer, and go on a shopping spree!". Perhaps we should go after the Jews and the Blacks for daring to desecrate this Holy Commemoration of Commercialism with their unseemly displays of alien religion and cultures also?

And as for it being on PBS, that is PBS's job. It BELONGS on PBS. If someone has a problem with it, thats their prerogative, they don't have to phone in funds during the telethon. But whininng about tax dollars is as ignorant as it is asinine, because most of PBS's funding comes from viewers and corporate donors. Of the 171 member stations, 88 are community organizations, 56 are colleges/universities, 20 are state authorities and 7 are local educational or municipal authorities. Leading sources of revenue: members (23.5%); state governments (18.3%); CPB & federal grants/contracts (16.4%); businesses (16.1%); state colleges and universities (6.5%); and foundations (5.5%). It's not just liberals tuning in, either - 73.2% of all American television-owning families watch public television, averaging 8 hours a month.

AND - PBS overall does more to raise the level of debate and awareness and tolerance - all essential to our democracy - than the rest of television combined, so your "tax dollars" (negligible!!) are being put to the highest possible SNR use than they do anywhere else in government.

Brian's assertion that this PBS documentary is prosletization is simply absurd. I can't even stomach responding to that charge any further, especially is he hasn't even seen the documenttary, only bothered to read about it from Islam-haters or polemicists like Pipes. Brian, watch the damn documentary yourself and then tell me if its prosletizing or not.

And how in God's name does the documentary threaten Brian's ability to "find solace in our cherished traditions" ?? Will Brian be putting a star on his Christmas tree and sudddenly little Cousin Johnny turns on PBS, sees a muezzin, and is suddenly compelled to burn the tree down? Likewise, from whence the charge that the documentary is "divisive" ?? Perhaps all those subversive Muslims should wear the cross during the holiday season as a show of solidarity? (memo to Kwanzaa displays and Menorahs: you're next).

Christmas is a holiday that transcends religion -its a universal theme of inclusion, tolerance, and hope. I find the airing of PBS's documentary on Muhamad SAW to be appropriate. And I reject any argument that it is "insensitive" or otherwise innapropriate to be nothing morethan politically-correct fearful paranoia.

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