Thursday, February 17, 2005

If We Don't Do It, Who Will

That used to be PBS's tag line. Until it became obvious that the answer was: Nickelodeon, The Disney Channel, Cartoon Network, The Discovery Channel, The History Channel, A&E, Bravo, National Geographic, BBC America...

So, PBS finds itself in trouble. They have financial troubles both from corporate backers and the government backers. They have troubles from conservatives of two stripes: those who don't see the need for government to fund TV at all, and those who don't see the need to fund the leftist leanings of PBS. They have internal squabbling. Concerned, apparently, that things were not as bad as they could be, they chose to run a segment on popular kids cartoon, Arthur, showing a character visiting a lesbian family.

Smooth move, PBS. Perfect timing.

As a personal note: my wife and I are finding it increasingly difficult to find TV stations or even shows that it is acceptable to let our kids watch without our being in the room. We aren't prudes and don't have hang ups about other's homosexuality; we just don't think it is an appropriate topic for 2 and 4 year olds. Now we have to scotch Arthur from our list. Sigh.


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