Submitted by: Veronica Coffin
Aside from an occasional football game, I do not watch television at home. However, once a year I take a one day trip out of town and I use the time in my hotel room to monitor what the nation is watching.
Last year, I stumbled upon Keeping Up With the Kardashians, which I had never seen before. I watched about fifteen minutes of it, and I couldn’t believe the stupidity of it all, and how bad the acting was. Even worse, the actors weren’t playing characters, they were playing themselves. If someone can’t even play themselves realistically, then they really have no talent.
I also spent some time last year watching Disney and Nickelodeon, and I was appalled at the way almost all of their shows subtly, or not so subtly, present sexuality to their young viewers. I also noticed that 90% of the so-called humor on these shows is based on ridicule and humiliation. I shudder at the thought of how many young viewers are losing their innocence and their souls by watching these shows. And how millions of clueless parents are so quick to plop their kids down in front of anything Disney, thinking the brand stands for wholesome entertainment, innocence and purity, when the reality is anything but.
This year, I scanned through a wide swatch of so-called “reality” shows, and they were all awful. I switched to sitcoms and comedy and was amazed at how unfunny they all were. I’m not saying that as some kind of conservative cynic, but as someone who has studied and worked in comedy, and who knows how to make people laugh. None of these shows were funny at all. Not even a sliver. Without their canned laughter, they’re nothing.
All of which begs the question, who watches this crap? And what is going on in their minds?
Obviously, millions of Americans watch this drivel. Not just millions, but tens of millions, hundreds of millions. They can’t all be Obama voters.
And what about the people who make these horrid shows? Maybe I’m old-fashioned, but I remember when acting was an art, and there was something that existed called talent. Have you ever been to an acting class? I’ve been to plenty. Actors used to be taught by professionals who stressed the importance of the director and the actors working together to serve the script or play. The ultimate goal was to honor God and elevate man. Today that’s all gone. Now it’s all emotion for emotion’s sake, and acting has been turned into a narcissistic display of self-expression. “Look at me!” is all anyone seems to care about, from the writers and directors to the actors to everyone in between.
I’ve heard television called the “boob tube” and the “hypnotist in the corner.” Both are apt descriptions. Consider the word “program.” Television networks are obsessed with “programming.” Viewers tune into their favorite “programs.” Where else does the word “program” appear? Well, in mind control, for one. Mind control subjects are “programmed.”
Perhaps that is what television has become: an ingenious device to dumb down the masses by programming their minds into whatever their handlers want them to believe. Vigilant Citizen and Henry Makow have both written extensively about this. So have many others. Instead of a Roman circus, the public is given an endless parade of talentless driven and told what to think, how to behave, and who to vote for. God help us all.
Submitted by: Veronica Coffin
Atheists are livid that some high school football players prayed for an injured teammate and they want the praying to stop.
At a Seminole High School football game, one of the players was injured and his teammates got down on one knee, bowed their heads and prayed for the player.
But when the Freedom From Religion Foundation got wind of it, they sent off a nasty letter to the school superintendent, accusing them of – gasp! – having an adult lead the students in prayer.
“It is our information and understanding that Seminole High School (is) allowing an adult, a local pastor, to act as a ‘volunteer chaplain’ for the football team,” FFRF attorney Andrew Seidel wrote.
The attorney said the school cannot “allow a non-school adult access to the children in its charge, and certainly cannot grant that access to a pastor seeking to organize prayer for the students.”
The FFRF told the school district to “refrain from having a ‘volunteer team chaplain’ at Seminole High School.
Only problem: It isn’t true. The high school doesn’t have a “volunteer team chaplain” and no adult directed the students to pray, school spokesman Mike Blasewitz said.
“There is nothing to cease and desist because our behavior was within the guidelines in the first place,” he told television station WFTV. “No adults in the photo, no adults participating, no adults leading it.”
And instead of an apology, or a mea culpa, the atheist organization is claiming victory!
“FFRF is very pleased with central Florida’s new-found commitment to upholding the First Amendment and protecting the rights of conscience of all students, not just Christians,” the group’s attorney Andrew Seidel said.
Submitted by: Veronica Coffin
Though racial discrimination exists, it is nowhere near the barrier it once was. The relevant question is: How much of what we see today can be explained by racial discrimination? This is an important question because if we conclude that racial discrimination is the major cause of black problems when it isn’t, then effective solutions will be elusive forever. To begin to get a handle on the answer, let’s pull up a few historical facts about black Americans.
In 1950, female-headed households were 18 percent of the black population. Today it’s close to 70 percent. One study of 19th-century slave families found that in up to three-fourths of the families, all the children lived with the biological mother and father. In 1925 New York City, 85 percent of black households were two-parent households. Herbert Gutman, author of “The Black Family in Slavery and Freedom, 1750-1925,” reports, “Five in six children under the age of six lived with both parents.” Also, both during slavery and as late as 1920, a teenage girl raising a child without a man present was rare among blacks.
A study of 1880 family structure in Philadelphia found that three-quarters of black families were nuclear families (composed of two parents and children). What is significant, given today’s arguments that slavery and discrimination decimated the black family structure, is the fact that years ago, there were only slight differences in family structure among racial groups.
Coupled with the dramatic breakdown in the black family structure has been an astonishing growth in the rate of illegitimacy. The black illegitimacy rate in 1940 was about 14 percent; black illegitimacy today is over 70 percent, and in some cities, it is over 80 percent.
The point of bringing up these historical facts is to ask this question, with a bit of sarcasm: Is the reason the black family was far healthier in the late 1800s and 1900s that back then there was far less racial discrimination and there were greater opportunities? Or did what experts call the “legacy of slavery” wait several generations to victimize today’s blacks?
The Census Bureau pegs the poverty rate among blacks at 28.1 percent. A statistic that one never hears about is that the poverty rate among intact married black families has been in the single digits for more than two decades, currently at 8.4 percent. Weak family structures not only spell poverty and dependency but also contribute to the social pathology seen in many black communities — for example, violence and predatory sex. Each year, roughly 7,000 blacks are murdered. Ninety-four percent of the time, the murderer is another black person. Though blacks are 13 percent of the nation’s population, they account for more than 50 percent of homicide victims. Nationally, the black homicide victimization rate is six times that of whites, and in some cities, it’s 22 times that of whites. According to the Bureau of Justice Statistics, between 1976 and 2011, there were 279,384 black murder victims. Coupled with being most of the nation’s homicide victims, blacks are also major victims of violent personal crimes, such as assault, rape and robbery.
To put this violence in perspective, black fatalities during the Korean War (3,075), Vietnam War (7,243) and all wars since 1980 (about 8,200) come to about 18,500, a number that pales in comparison with black loss of life at home. Young black males had a greater chance of reaching maturity on the battlefields of Iraq and Afghanistan than on the streets of Philadelphia, Chicago, Detroit, Oakland, Newark and other cities.
The black academic achievement gap is a disaster. Often, black 12th-graders can read, write and deal with scientific and math problems at only the level of white sixth-graders. This doesn’t bode well for success in college or passing civil service exams.
If it is assumed that problems that have a devastating impact on black well-being are a result of racial discrimination and a “legacy of slavery” when they are not, resources spent pursuing a civil rights strategy will yield disappointing results.
Walter E. Williams is a professor of economics at George Mason University.