Someone sent us the "Dear Colleague" letter that was sent out by Congressmen Joe Baca and Tom Osborne in reaction of to tittygate (we're still not sure about capitalizing that). There's been a lot of talk around the blogs lately about whether you should trust something a stranger emails you; our policy has always been that we don't care. Even so, it's hard to believe this memo is for real. "[O]n-camera sexual gyrations?" Why not just make a reference to "precious bodily fluids" and be done with it? And, come on, it's entitled "Super Bowl Sleaze Fest," and everyone knows that a "fest" is something you celebrate! Also, it asks people to "join the Caucus," which just sounds dirty.
- Dear Colleague:
On Sunday, 100 million viewers in the United States and around the world were shocked to see the NFL halftime show for Super Bowl XXXVIII. Viewers watched as the star of the show, performer Janet Jackson, had her costume ripped away to reveal her bare breast. Her on-camera sexual gyrations and exposure were broadcast by CBS via 200 free, over-the-air television stations around the country.
- CBS pushed the envelope on sexually explicit programming in primetime TV to a new and shocking level. But that was only part of the show Sunday night. CBS also chose to air a spot advertising the upcoming horror movie "Van Helsing" even though it contained extremely disturbing and graphic images of brutality and gore, and despite the fact that it has yet to be rated by the Motion Picture Association of America. If the film were eventually to be rated NC-17, it would be contrary to network policy to carry any commercials for it.
Why were families across the country force-fed sexual and violent content during the family hours of primetime television? What can we as lawmakers, citizens, and parents do about the declining standards of decency and lack of public accountability? Americans should not be afraid to let their kids watch a football game. The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has already launched an investigation into Sunday's controversial Super Bowl halftime show. The FCC probe will encompass the entire halftime program -- including the brief exposure of singer Janet Jackson's breast and the sexualized dance routine precipitating it -- to determine if it violates indecency standards set in law and enforced by the FCC.
But that is not enough. Members of Congress cannot abdicate their responsibility as elected officials. That is why we have created the bipartisan Sex and Violence in the Media Caucus. The Caucus was formed to bring awareness to the issue of sexual and violent content in the media. If you do not believe that sexual and violent content are halftime entertainment, please join the Congressional Sex and Violence in the Media Caucus. To join the Caucus, please contact Oscar Ramirez in Congressman Baca's office at 5-6161 or Lisa Horn in Congressman Osborne's office at 5-6435 .
Congressman Joe Baca Congressman Tom Osborne
Caucus Co-Chair Caucus Co-Chair
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