Sunday, January 14, 2007


During the night, my brother sent me this e-mail:

Unless you have Tivo and you were watching the Saints-Eagles game tonight, you missed what makes live TV so fun.

They scanned the crowd at the Superdome in New Orleans, and paused for what seemed like forever on a woman in a group of folks wearing black T-shirts (team colors are black and gold), but written on her T-shirt was this message:


gotta love that.

Doing a quick check of Google News after reading that, I found that
Frank Ahrens of the Washington Post already weighed in on the topic.

Here are a few selections from his piece:

Fox is in court right now challenging the FCC's right to police the airwaves for indecency. Networks have argued that too many FCC fines for indecency have been for fleeting instances of profanity or indecency and on live TV, where the networks have no control over the actions of those they televise.

But this instance was neither fleeting nor live: The profane word was not said, it was WRITTEN on the TV screen on her t-shirt for five seconds. The TiVo evidence is indisputable.

It's equivalent to flipping a vulgar hand sign at the government.

When I first googled "Eagles, shirt" in Google News during the night, there were only two articles. There are now almost 1,000.

I tend to side with most of the commenters to the Washington Post column - that Ahrens, and the FCC, should get lives; that the real obscenity is the war in Iraq, and that it's these little brush-fires of controversy are stoked up into giant maelstroms in order to keep us from focusing on that.

One commenter pointed out that flipping the bird is allowed under the First Amendment. (However, in Toobworld it will cause your middle digit to be digitally pixilated for the duration of the act.)

Another poster pointed out that Reggie Bush uttered the mother of all F bombs, but that is supposedly the crux of the whole argument before the courts. Ahrens says this is different and was intentional; that it could have been prevented, unlike Reggie's "motherbleeper".

There's also some question as to whether or not the shirt actually says the coined word of "fuckda". Some argue that the shirt actually reads:


And actually, this makes more sense. It suggests the original term, and it's a play on words since eagles have feathers; that the Philly team was ripe for the plucking.

Here's a
picture of the t-shirt that is obviously causing riots in the streets.

The security chief at work mentioned that if only she had bigger breasts, we'd know one way or the other as to what the t-shirt actually reads.

If the whole thing was deliberate on the part of FOX, it reminds me of a speech by Willard White, chairman of the Tunney Media Group, which owns the TV network NBS.........

I won't pay a 73 million dollar fine, I won't pay a 73 cent fine, I won't time delay the news, and I won't say, "I'm sorry."

I no longer recognize the authority of the FCC in this matter. I’m going to have to be ordered by a federal judge, and when they come to get my transmitter they better send a group a hell of a lot more scary than the Foundation for Friendly Families or whatever the hell they are.

Let those guys embed themselves with 2nd marine division for a while; they'll rejigger their sense of what’s obscene. Jack, this is the one I have been waiting for my whole life.
- Willard White
'Studio 60'

Speaking of organizations like "The Foundation for Friendly Families", I'm sure we'll hear Brent Bozell of the PTC weigh in on this.....

There was also this anecdote from one of those people responding to the Ahrens article:

Last night, I wore my Fvck the War! tee shirt underneath my Sweater and showed it off a few times in the bars. There was only one woman who got mad at me. I said I would cover up the obscene word, so I put my hand over the word war. Then she really got mad at me!

One guy who saw the tee shirt was a vet from the first gulf oil war and told me that by wearing it I was supporting the troops. He was also very glad that he had been out long enough so the military could no longer call him back involuntarily through their back door draft of indentured servitude for life.

I think this would make for a great scene in an episode of 'Brothers & Sisters'!


Meanwhile, there was this in today's New York Post, part of the Murdoch empire, like FOX:

Fox blamed the shot on the frenzy of televising an NFL playoff game. "The shot was inadvertent and unintentional, we apologize," Fox Sports VP Dan Bell said.

And this from

Fox comments on controversial shot.
Fox spokeswoman Ileana Pena issued an apology for a crowd shot during last night's game that showed a woman who obviously was not an Eagles fan. The woman wore a shirt that said "[Expletive]-da Eagles."

"The shot was inadvertent and unintentional, and we apologize for it," Pena said when reached for comment.

So they're not as brave as I was hoping them to be.

At any rate, in a super-charged atmosphere like this, I think even Froggy the Gremlin better enunciate properly when he plunks his magic twanger.....


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