Thursday, August 24, 2006

New CBS Survivor Program Promotes Racism

Recently we have seen a series of publicly "racist" statements made by celebrities like Mel Gibson, Andrew Young and George Allen. Now Viacom owned CBS television wants to get in on the action by promoting its new Survivor series in which contestants will be grouped according to their ethnicity. This is a promotion for racial profiling. Whites vs. Blacks, Orientals vs. Hispanics et al. This is an outrage! ABC tried to launch a similar format which was met with widespread opposition before the program even aired. It is my hope that the same thing happens to this program. Right-wing radio personalities see nothing wrong with it. Tucker Carlson says this is all the fault of the "liberals" who he claims have put us all into tribes. Not only is that conclusion fallacious, it is also ridiculous. If this type of program would have been part of the Fox fall lineup I would oppose it as vehemently as I oppose this CBS entry, but there is a difference. We all know that Fox is a conservative, pro-Bush organization. CBS until recently was percieved as being fair and to a degree universal. This is just another in a long series of actions this network and its parent organization have made that cause me to re-evaluate my opinion of the network. 1) The Viacom purchase of BET(Black Entertainment Television). BET was at one time the most successful Black owned and operated entity on cable television. When Viacom purchased it, no longer was it Black owned and operated and although Viacom claims it will not influence programming I see a remarkable decrease in issue oriented programming and an increase in sexually oriented videos with scantilly clad females. The problem here is the time of day these videos are able to be viewed, if they were on exclusively during the late night hours I would have not objections. Education programming seems to have diminished. 2) The president of Viacom once said what is good for Bush is good for Viacom. This shows that one of the nation's primary entertainment outlets is at odds with the majority of the people of the United States who vigorously oppose Bush policies. 3) Viacom fired Dan Rather, an established anchor because of Rather's attempt to verify the absence of proof of George Bush's military obligations to his country when he was eligible to serve. There are those who would say this is no big deal because there was African-American opposition to the CBS show "All In The Family" when it premiered in the early seventies. Yes, the main character Archie Bunker was a racist, but there was always Edith Bunker to show him the error of his ways. Archie always ended up on the short end of the stick anyway. This show will promote divisions by positioning members of different racial groups against each other. The same energy that cancelled the ABC show should be used to cancel this one. I expect strong reactions from the NAACP and the American Civil Liberties Union.

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