Tuesday, October 18, 2005
FIRSTAMENDMENT: Does a T-shirt with "Fockers" on it get you booted from airplane?
READ THIS STORY:
Outspoken dance star MOBY has called for passengers to boycott America's
Southwest Airlines after a woman was thrown off a recent flight for
wearing a T-shirt criticising US President GEORGE W BUSH.
Moby was appalled by news LORRIE HEASLEY was removed from a flight for
modelling a T-shirt featuring pictures of Bush, Vice-President DICK CHENEY
and Secretary Of State CONDOLEEZZA RICE alongside the text 'Meet The
So the staunch Democrat is now encouraging his fans to avoid Southwest
Writing on his website, Moby says, "A woman who was wearing a T-shirt with
pictures of Bush, Cheney and Condi Rice and with the slogan 'Meet The
Fockers' was kicked off of a Southwest Airlines flight.
"Let's just get this straight: she was kicked off of the flight for
wearing a T-shirt that the staff found offensive.
"You know what? I find Southwest Airlines offensive.
"I do hereby encourage you and everyone you know to boycott Southwest
And the comment on it below.
---------- Forwarded message ----------
Date: Tue, 18 Oct 2005 12:13:15 +0000 (GMT)
From: Thos Myers <email@example.com>
Subject: [ACME Member List] FREEDOM OF SPEECH and viewer discretion
>From a friend:
"Have you followed the story of a woman who was evicted from a Southwest
Airline flight for wearing a t-shirt with some objectionable material on it.
Although the newspaper article was not specific about the details of the
shirt content. I learned from someone else that content. It seems that the
shirt showed a picture of Bush, Cheney and Rice with the caption "Meet the
:"F...ers." (In the actual case it was spelled out.) Many passengers
complained and the lady was offered the opportunity to cover up the
offending material but this was not done and she was evicted from the plane.
(Before it took off, of course.) She is now suing the airline.
On PBS last night was An Ameican Experience: "Two Days In October":
"Based on the book They Marched Into Sunlight by Pulitzer Prize-winning
journalist David Maraniss, Two Days in October tells the story of two
turbulent days in October 1967 when history turned a corner.
In Vietnam, a U.S. battalion unwittingly marched into a Viet Cong trap.
Sixty-one young men were killed and as many wounded. The ambush prompted
some in power to wonder whether the war might be unwinnable.
Half a world away, concerned students at the University of Wisconsin
protested the presence of Dow Chemical recruiters on campus. The
demonstration spiraled out of control, marking the first time that a
student protest had turned violent.
Told almost entirely by the people who took part in the harrowing events
of those two days -- American soldiers, police officers, relatives of men
killed in battle, protesting students, university administrators and Viet
Cong fighters -- the film offers a window onto a moment that divided a
nation and a war that continues to haunt us."
PBS thought it prudent to place a viewer discretion warning several times
on the screen, a warning about the use of language, and not about the
footage of the ambush or the dead or the beatings of students.
I sent the following message to PBS:
"The film was brilliant.
I am curious about the editor's decision to place a viewer discretion
warning concerning the use of language during the program. The word
"fuck" was used a couple times.
There was no warning issued about watching people being beaten with clubs,
which according to witnesses sounded like watermellons being smashed, or
the killing and savagery of the ambush or the footage of dead, bloated
American soldiers after the battle.
If the editors felt that a warning was necessary, why not a warning about
the violence, the killing and the dead?
I applaud the film makers in their excellent reporting of those two days
Curious that we more offended by the word "fuck" than we are about
killing, beatings, bloated dead bodies, body bags with parts of bodies and
the savagery of war and the savagery of police beatings.
Recently the beating of a 64 year old man in New Orleans by police was
reported on the news. The reporting of the war in Iraq, however, is
reporting lite - showing none of the savagery of that war. But, let us be
warned about the use of the word "fuck".