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Conservative Christian views

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1999: Warning labels on TV programs

Christian Action Network's president, Martin Mawyer, asked on 1999-FEB-24 for an appointment with William Kennard, Chairman of the Federal Communication Commission. 2 Mawyer would like to see a "HC" (Homosexual Conduct) warning label placed on any TV programs which portray homosexual acts. "Parents have a right to be warned about programs depicting acts of homosexuality on television. Members of our organization have become increasingly disgusted with the amount of homosexuality in television programming. More than two dozen homosexual characters are portrayed weekly on network television alone. Unless these producers are trying to promote a secret agenda, they should have no problems alerting parents that their programs contain homosexual content." It was not clear whether the proposed warning label would be use in TV programs which actually showed people engaging in homosexual acts, or which only implied that homosexual acts were being done off screen, or which simply had an actor playing an out-of-the closet gay or lesbian character. It is also not clear whether the "more than two dozen homosexual characters" which appear weekly on TV actually over represent or under represent the occurrence of homosexuality in the general population. The idea was apparently not adopted.

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2003: A conservative Christian view of TV programs with erotic or sexual content:

Camerin Courtney, writing for the Evangelical Christian magazine Christianity Today in 2003-SEP observed that today's TV programs, novels, movies, etc., portray many more erotic or sexual situations, when compared to past decades. They have the potential to rapidly change viewers' attitudes towards sexual behavior.

Courtney commented:

bulletThree's Company was a controversial TV show decades ago. It showed two women and a man cohabiting strictly for financial and security reasons. When Courtney was a kid, the program was off limits because it was too risqu.
bulletToday, it is difficult to find a TV show that does not have a committed, unmarried couple living together in a sexual relationship.
bullet"In today's entertainment culture, it's easy to get desensitized to sexual ethics and practices that are contrary to our Christian beliefs. In other words, the new battleground for sexual temptation isn't the bedroom, but our brains."
bullet"...I've...decided to stop watching certain TV shows altogether, such as Queer Eye [for the Straight Guy] or Will and Grace, because, though popular and often well-written, they've had me laughing at or rooting for things that are quite contrary to my beliefs. And, let's face it, as single people, when we get aroused by certain scenes in movies or in books, there's not much that's healthy we can do with those feelings." The second sentence may be a vague mention of masturbation, which many conservative Christians feel is a strictly an off-limits, sinful behavior for everyone. Or it might refer to pre-marital sex for singles, also frequently regarded as a major sin.
bulletBy not watching programs with erotic or sexual content, she is "spared that niggling feeling of guilt" and experiences "a refreshing peace of mind." 1

But, of course, others watch these programs and gradually revise the sexual standards which were taught to them as children. By watching TV programs and other media they may embrace pre-marital sex, homosexuality, and other sexual matters as normal, natural, and free of sin, if it is performed in a safe, consensual and non-manipulative manner.

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Interesting resource:

bulletThe Commercial Closet maintains "The world's largest collection of gay advertising" at: http://www.commercialcloset.org/cgi-bin/iowa/index.html They have indexed over 750 television and print ads, from the U.S. and around the world.

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References used:

  1. Camerin Courney, "The New Sexual Temptation," Christianity Today, 2003-SEP-3, at: http://www.christianitytoday.com/
  2. "TV warning proposed for homosexual conduct," Evangelical Press News Service, quoted in Maranatha Christian Journal for 1999-FEB-24. Available at: http://www.mcjonline.com/news/news3037.htm
  3. "Gay-TV" is an e-mail mailing list which distributes a free weekly guide to mainstream television programs that feature lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender themes. To subscribe, send an E-mail to listserv@xconn.com, leaving the subject line blank and inserting as the message: SUBSCRIBE GAY-TV

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Site navigation: Home > "Hot" topics > Homosexuality > Agenda & news > Media > here

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Copyright 1999 to 2005 by Ontario Consultants on Religious Tolerance
Latest update: 2005-FEB-25
Author: B.A. Robinson

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