Thursday, February 24, 2005

Gay Marriage -- On the Simpsons

Sometimes I'm almost sorry I don't watch the Simpsons. Well, I got out of the habit of sitting in front of the TV around about 1972, and just never got back into it. I see the news online, though, and this looks pretty funny.

One of the characters on the Simpsons has come out as a lesbian, and is getting married.
In an episode titled "There's Something About Marrying," a longtime character on Fox's 15-year hit -- Patty Bouvier, Marge Simpson's sister -- came out of the closet while Homer Simpson conducted dozens of same-sex weddings after small-town Springfield legalized the unions in a bid to increase tourism. Gay marriage, 'Simpsons' style

Hey, just a minute -- isn't this on Fox???

What, people sit there, molded into their Laz-E-Boys, and watch Bill O'Reilly, and then they chuckle over gay marriages on the Simpsons? Aren't they horrified? Alarmed, at least?
L. Brent Bozell III, president of the Parents Television Council, criticized "The Simpsons" for addressing the issue of gay marriage, although he said that he had not seen the episode.

"At a time when the public mood is overwhelmingly against gay marriage, any show that promotes gay marriage is deliberately bucking the public mood," he said.

"I'd rather them not do it at all," he said. "You've got a show watched by millions of children. Do children need to have gay marriage thrust in their faces as an issue? Why can't we just entertain them?"

Ah, there we are.

You gotta love this logic. The "public mood is overwhelmingly against gay marriage" -- and so it shouldn't be on TV.

Like, television is such a radically thought-provoking, intellectually adventurous, challenging medium, always pushing people to consider new perspectives, new philosophies ... not pandering enough to the middle.

Seriously, this is a perfect example of something. For some crazy reason, in this modern day and age, there are people who think that everybody ought to be just like them. I like this kind of TV show, therefore that's what the networks should show. They really feel their case is made if there are a lot of people who agree with them. We like this kind of show, so that's what should be on.

And it's not just that. If something is on that they don't like, these people somehow feel that, rather than changing the channel, they should write letters and issue statements opposing whatever it is.

And of course it's more than television, like, if a guy marries a girl, he thinks all guys should marry girls. And if they don't, there must be something wrong with them.

See ... I just don't get that.

This Parents Blah-blah guy thinks, since he wouldn't like to see this episode of the Simpsons, nobody should see it. I mean, look, he didn't watch it. Why isn't that enough? Here's why: it's not about him, it's about him controlling other people. He knows what to do, he just won't flip to that channel ... but you might.

And what's that about "gay marriage thrust in their faces?" Isn't that a little ... graphic?

3 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jim,
I've been a huge Simpsons fan from the beginning, and have always been proud of their refusal to bow to censorship. Unfortunately though, we can't give Fox too much credit here. The episode DID open up with a "viewer discretion" disclaimer. (I don't remember the exact wording, but it left no doubt was to what the offending "issue" was.) Sigh.

One step forward, one step back.

-Kristen Argenio
Silver Spring, MD

February 25, 2005 12:34 PM  
Anonymous  said...

Okay, Im 14 and i've grown up with the simpsons...I dont think there was anything wrong with that episode. I mean...Why can't people just face the fact that there are gay people in the world...I mean i know lots of them. And that episode offends no one...Well i guess people who are totally against gay people...But still Can't you just have an open mind?...Let it go.

June 08, 2005 9:28 PM  
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