December 27, 2005

The Next Boycott Target

The folks at the American Family Organization, basking in the glow of saving Christmas from heathen retailers who wouldn't address customers with "Merry Christmas," have locked onto their next target, the NBC television network.

NBC is rolling out a new program titled "The Book of Daniel." The main character is a troubled Episcopal priest and his very disfunctional family, which includes a 23-year old homosexual son. The AFA is deeply offended by this program, which they claim "mocks christianity."

The AFA is trying to mobilize its members to e-mail the chairman of NBC, Bob Wright, to express their outrage that the network would even consider airing this type of program, and is also asking people to get their friends and family to do the same.

I have no opinion about the program because I have not seen it yet. There are plenty of other shows on my cable system which I do find offensive, and I would suggest people follow my lead if they are upset about "The Book of Daniel." It's a radical approach, but it's just crazy enough to work.

Don't watch it.

Doesn't the AFA realize that the bigger stink they make about this program, the more people they will influence to actually watch the show out of curiosity, myself included. I'm not an expert on the television industry, but their is one basic principle of a market economy that is almost foolproof that applies here--supply and demand.

If their is little demand for a television program, the supply will stop because it will be pulled off the air. Apathy is the enemy of the entertainment industry. Free press, including public protest campaigns, can be a great asset.

If "The Book of Daniel" offends you, may I suggest you turn the channel or even turn your television off completely and spend your time focused on loved ones or doing something constructive, like reading this blog.

Please don't waste everyone's time with petitions and counter-productive protests. There's a long list of ways we can better spend the precious time that the Lord gives us on earth.


  1. It amazes me that after all these years people still think that the way to crush an entertainment event of dubious value is to make a huge production out of condemning it, thus inflating wildly the numbers of the curious viewers who will tune in for the opening show or go to the movie the opening weekend. Those first weekend/opening stats can make or break the distribution, so if they are high, the odds of the program hanging on for a while go up accordingly. I suspect that producers sometimes hope and pray that someone will get in high dudgeon and thus stir up free publicity. What would otherwise have died quietly perhaps in ads on the movie pages suddenly becomes a matter of "news" reports, disussions on radio and tv shows and on and on and on. People who would never have bothered to watch the thing feel compelled to take a stand for or against it. Like this is what God has in mind for us to do with our time and other resources? A movie?

    I only wish half the effort would be put into doing something about the shameful state of access to health care in this country for the poor and many of the elderly. Someone please tell these people to read the prophets Isaiah and Amos! I heard the head of the AFA say in an interview the other day that they think this is not the only issue, but it is an important one and that is why they are focusing on it. When resources are limited, to focus on something this foolish is questionable. Talk about deck chairs on the Titanic!

    Happy Feast of St. John the Evangelist, who managed to write the entire gospel without mentioning the scandalous plays being put on in Rome at the time.

  2. After seeing a short preview to that, I was planning on watching it, but since the AFA says it's bad for me, I guess I'd better not. Darn.

  3. The problem with this show is that Jesus is being cast like the genie from Aladdin's lamp, at the scriptwriter's whim and will be appearing and saying things that reflect what culture has to say about Christ and not what the Church believes.

    To put Jesus in as a pop-up TV character diminishes His Lordship over all creation and makes Him out to be the pastor's buddy, who magically appears when needed. Anybody of real faith knows that this is not the case and one of the real struggles of faith is that Christ has the Sovereign right to say "no" to our pleas and prayers, and that He does not pop up out of the blue when we want Him to.

    Perhaps if NBC had sought better pastoral experts in putting this show together, they would not be making such a colossal mistake.