Friday, November 04, 2005


The Public Broadcasting System is being accused of launching a direct assault on fathers and fatherhood. A men's issues columnist says a documentary recently aired by PBS gives a distorted view of family law. Breaking the Silence: Children's Stories was shown on many PBS affiliates last Thursday (October 20). Subsequently, more than 3,500 people reportedly have contacted the network to protest airing of the film which, according to news reports, features "poignant interviews of children, [battered] mothers and adult survivors of childhood domestic violence."

Columnist Glenn Sacks takes issue, however, with how the film portrays fathers. He contends it depicts fathers as batterers and child molesters who steal children from their mothers. "[The film] said that only fathers commit child abuse, when the vast majority of child abuse is committed by mothers not by fathers, according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services," Sacks observes. "And it gives a very distorted view of what happens in family law. For example, the film claims that the vast majority of men who seek joint custody of their children after divorce are abusers."

The columnist is calling on PBS to allow advocates of fatherhood a chance to respond to the film's one-sided presentation. "What we are asking for is time on PBS to make a meaningful response to the film," he explains. According to Sacks, the documentary "cherry-picked a few highly unusual cases and pretended that they represent a widespread problem," resulting in unfair treatment of the issue. That, he asserts, contradicts PBS's mission statement. "PBS [is] funded by tax dollars," Sacks says. "They have a responsibility for [airing] balanced programming. This program is extremely unbalanced. And so what we want is PBS to give us the chance to come on and to give our perspective on these issues." So far, says Sacks, he has yet to receive a meaningful response from the taxpayer-supported broadcasting network.

Breaking the Silence, which is scheduled to air on additional PBS affiliates in coming weeks, was underwritten by a half-million-dollar grant from the Mary Kay Ash Charitable Foundation, which is associated with Mary Kay beauty products. The Foundation reports that since 1996 it has provided more than $13 million in grants to two specific causes: research of cancers affecting women, and prevention of violence against women.



It is the normal spelling rule in English that all proper names -- such as the names of persons -- are spelt with an initial capital letter. But in the EU there is one insulting exception. You will never guess what it is:

"It must be getting a little too close for Christmas for the chi-chi crystal palace of the pretentious European Union. Pooh-bahs in Brussels have come up with a new grammar rule for themselves and the Netherlands--making it official that the name "Christ" will soon be written with a lower-case "c". That was the stipulation in an orthography reform published earlier this month in Brussels. According to the agency, the new spelling legislation will also stipulate that the Dutch word for "jews" (joden) be spelled with a capital "J" when referring to nationality [Catch 22: There IS no Jewish nationality, though there is an Israeli one] and with a lower-case "j" when referring to the religion. The changes will be mandatory in August of 2006. There is no description of the fines offenders will face if they keep right on spelling "Christ" with a capital "C".

The new spelling regulations are coming from the same folk, who include as one of their seat numbers in the august and austere chamber in which they gather to prevaricate on all things politically correct, the number 666 [The Devil's number]. The European Union hierarchy may have numbered the seat 666, but at last count no one has had the courage to actually claim the seat as their own.

At the European Union, the name of the humble carpenter from Nazareth may be diminished by lower-case spelling, but Javier Solana, The Great will continue to have his name spelled in capital letters. Solana, a sort of Kofi Annan, European style, is High Representative of the Common Foreign and Security Policy (CFSP) and the Secretary General of both the European Union and the Western European Union. Note to the media, all of his titles are to be spelled in capital letters.

EU politically correct lockstep seems to be as infectious as bird flu. Across the ocean in faraway Florida, schools are banning Christmas and Easter holidays in response to Muslim demands. "Demands from the terrorist-linked Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) for an official school recognition of a Muslim Holy Day has resulted in the Hillsborough County School Board banning all religious holidays-Christmas, Good Friday and Easter are off the calendar. Any parent, whose little angel has been traumatized with nowhere to show off her Christmas pageant wings, will have to perform for the neighbourhood kids out in the garage this year.

The Hillsborugh County School Board and its trustees should be reminded of author Mark Twain's take on school boards: "In the first place God created idiots. This was just for practice. Then he created school boards."

Meanwhile caving in to the march of the politically correct army will someday lead to the banning of the words "hi" and "hello" on the very likely basis that it may offend somebody who prefers to be greeted with the words, "Assalaam Alaikum"."


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