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Fri Oct 5, 2012, 10:35 PM

I know why Romney hates Big Bird.

In case anyone is curious. It is the same reason Dobson hated on SpongeBob Squarepants, back in the day:

Zero Tolerance

That piece was about the right-wing attack on SpongeBob Squarepants over his appearance in a video called "We Are Family" which Dobson thought was promoting homosexuality. Here's the chunk that explains Mitt's attack on Big Bird:

It's precisely because they recognize <television's> power that the right wants to control what comes out of the box. And for the past 35 years, with Sesame Street leading the way, the dominant ethos in children's educational programming (as distinct from, you know, the crap that corporations produce just to sell toys with) has been that children's TV should teach them to cooperate with, respect, and learn from cultures and people who are different from them. And that has had an enormous impact.

I was born the same year Sesame Street premiered. Sesame Street taught me to read. It also introduced me to a universe very unlike the suburban neighborhood in which I was growing up. It was set in an urban neighborhood tenanted by a multiracial cast in which working-class families were well represented. It introduced me to a whole range of brightly colored creatures who expanded my idea of the boundaries of the possible, and to a zany sense of humor that taught us to expect the unexpected and greet it with shrieks of delight. I was enthralled by it, and the effects were lasting and permanent.

Once, when I couldn't have been more than 7, I visited a friend of my mother's and was flabbergasted when she told me that she thought Sesame Street was "just awful." I asked her why. She said, "It's teaching children Spanish!" I still didn't get it. I couldn't figure out what was wrong with learning Spanish. Weren't we supposed to like learning things? Wasn't that what school was for?

Now, of course, I realize what that woman's problem was. And, in her own way, she was right: Sesame Street didn't make me a Spanish speaker, but it did teach me enough Spanish so that I now recognize a number of words and I could still count to 20 in Spanish if you gave me enough time and a few do-overs. Spanish doesn't now seem to me like a completely foreign language. It's more familiar, and therefore less frightening, and when I hear people speaking Spanish, I don't think of them as aliens from a hostile planet. And the ideological descendants of this woman, 35 years later, want to make damn sure that no PBS program gets a chance to do for gay people what Sesame Street did for African-Americans, Latinos, the disabled, Native Americans, and all the other cultures and identities that were represented on that show.

This battle matters, people. No matter how stupid it looks. ... This is about whether the voters of the next generation will believe that tolerance is a virtue to be encouraged or a vice to be avoided.


It's the message of tolerance--yea, even celebration--of diversity that the right-wing hates. That's what Big Bird is a symbol of for them, and that's why Mitt took a shot at him; it was disguised as a fiscal responsibility point but really it's a dog whistle for the rabid fundamentalist base. Unfortunately the dog whistle turned out to be audible to other people as well.

The Plaid Adder

52 replies, 6823 views

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Arrow 52 replies Author Time Post
Reply I know why Romney hates Big Bird. (Original post)
Plaid Adder Oct 2012 OP
Wounded Bear Oct 2012 #1
lame54 Oct 2012 #2
nadinbrzezinski Oct 2012 #3
BlancheSplanchnik Oct 2012 #7
Cracklin Charlie Oct 2012 #10
nadinbrzezinski Oct 2012 #11
Cracklin Charlie Oct 2012 #16
Panasonic Oct 2012 #22
nadinbrzezinski Oct 2012 #24
rgbecker Oct 2012 #4
Care Acutely Oct 2012 #5
Dustlawyer Oct 2012 #6
Hugin Oct 2012 #8
Arugula Latte Oct 2012 #9
nadinbrzezinski Oct 2012 #12
Arugula Latte Oct 2012 #13
nadinbrzezinski Oct 2012 #14
Arugula Latte Oct 2012 #17
starroute Oct 2012 #15
jtuck004 Oct 2012 #18
Spitfire of ATJ Oct 2012 #19
Starry Messenger Oct 2012 #20
flyguyjake Oct 2012 #21
Rozlee Oct 2012 #34
Fantastic Anarchist Oct 2012 #23
lonestarnot Oct 2012 #25
gopiscrap Oct 2012 #26
BumRushDaShow Oct 2012 #27
Odin2005 Oct 2012 #28
yardwork Oct 2012 #29
CaliforniaPeggy Oct 2012 #30
jillan Oct 2012 #31
Gidney N Cloyd Oct 2012 #39
randome Oct 2012 #42
glowing Oct 2012 #41
grantcart Oct 2012 #32
moondust Oct 2012 #33
alfredo Oct 2012 #35
Kurovski Oct 2012 #36
jmowreader Oct 2012 #37
Bucky Oct 2012 #38
gateley Oct 2012 #40
cyclezealot Oct 2012 #43
malaise Oct 2012 #44
marions ghost Oct 2012 #45
PADemD Oct 2012 #46
Sekhmets Daughter Oct 2012 #47
Demeter Oct 2012 #48
Wednesdays Oct 2012 #49
Auntie Bush Oct 2012 #50
DianaForRussFeingold Oct 2012 #51
Cha Oct 2012 #52

Response to Plaid Adder (Original post)

Fri Oct 5, 2012, 10:38 PM

1. Bam! That nail head has been hammered......nt

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Response to Plaid Adder (Original post)

Fri Oct 5, 2012, 10:41 PM

2. He's not the right height

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Response to Plaid Adder (Original post)

Fri Oct 5, 2012, 10:45 PM

3. You got it

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Response to nadinbrzezinski (Reply #3)

Fri Oct 5, 2012, 11:47 PM

7. I second this motion!



GREAT OP!!


I love deep psychological/social/political analysis.

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Response to nadinbrzezinski (Reply #3)

Fri Oct 5, 2012, 11:55 PM

10. Can I borrow this picture?

It's great!

100,000K posts?

I'm not worthy!

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Response to Cracklin Charlie (Reply #10)

Fri Oct 5, 2012, 11:59 PM

11. Sure, google search

And welcome to DU



(Welcome people and lord you will build them too)

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Response to nadinbrzezinski (Reply #11)

Sat Oct 6, 2012, 12:45 AM

16. I've been here forever

No time to post.

Thanks!

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Response to nadinbrzezinski (Reply #11)

Sat Oct 6, 2012, 04:58 AM

22. Hey nadin..

 

The only other person (that I'm aware of) that had that many posts here in DU is newyawker99.

I still miss Roni.

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Response to Panasonic (Reply #22)

Sat Oct 6, 2012, 11:18 AM

24. There are a lot of people I miss

That are now gone.

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Response to Plaid Adder (Original post)

Fri Oct 5, 2012, 10:51 PM

4. Well put, right on, bravo!

That Romney would bring up the idea of cutting PBS, Big BIrd and Jim Lehrer shows how out of touch Mitt is with America. And he is the one acusing Obama of being Un American. I can't wait to be finished with the guy so we can get on with our lives.

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Response to Plaid Adder (Original post)

Fri Oct 5, 2012, 11:09 PM

5. Thanks Plaid! True for so many of us.

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Response to Plaid Adder (Original post)

Fri Oct 5, 2012, 11:47 PM

6. What about Jim Lehrer? How easy and with a smile he just told Jim Lehrer he was done

if Rmoney has his way! He would be good at cutting up this country and selling it off to these billionaires so they can become trillionaires and whatever comes after that. There can be only one!

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Response to Plaid Adder (Original post)

Fri Oct 5, 2012, 11:52 PM

8. Hahaha! GMTA, Adder!

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Response to Plaid Adder (Original post)

Fri Oct 5, 2012, 11:55 PM

9. Also: Big Bird likes sharing. Mitt hates sharing.

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Response to Arugula Latte (Reply #9)

Sat Oct 6, 2012, 12:00 AM

12. What is this ... sharing... you speak off?

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Response to nadinbrzezinski (Reply #12)

Sat Oct 6, 2012, 12:03 AM

13. Redistribution, my friend!



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Response to Arugula Latte (Reply #13)

Sat Oct 6, 2012, 12:05 AM

14. SCARED!!!!



(for the record my conure loves to do this... I will need to take a photo of that cutey doing that)

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Response to nadinbrzezinski (Reply #14)

Sat Oct 6, 2012, 12:51 AM

17. Kitty!!!

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Response to Plaid Adder (Original post)

Sat Oct 6, 2012, 12:06 AM

15. That's half of it -- but there's another half, which is the urge to privatize

The corporatists can't stand to see anything out there they aren't making money off of. I think if they did manage to cut off PBS funding, they wouldn't just cut it loose. They'd sell off any bit of it that seemed to have commercial value. They'd like to see something like Sesame Street but with actual sponsors pushing cocoa-bits instead of the number four.

They don't mind pitching their agenda to the Tea Party types with fears of multiculturalism, but that isn't the real objective.

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Response to starroute (Reply #15)

Sat Oct 6, 2012, 01:34 AM

18. And an entire government to facilitate it, virtually no pushback. n/t

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Response to starroute (Reply #15)

Sat Oct 6, 2012, 02:58 AM

19. If corporations took over Sesame Street the entire message would change...

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Response to Plaid Adder (Original post)

Sat Oct 6, 2012, 04:11 AM

20. k&r

I was born in 1970 and PBS, Sesame Street and other public children's programs were a huge part of my childhood.

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Response to Plaid Adder (Original post)

Sat Oct 6, 2012, 04:50 AM

21. I grew up on Mr. Rogers & Sesame Street!

 

Apparently Rich White Mormon families don't watch PBS nor Sesame Street.

I find that odd, especially since Mormon's are baby factories. What the fuck do they raise them to watch?

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Response to flyguyjake (Reply #21)

Sat Oct 6, 2012, 03:36 PM

34. Polo and lawn cricket I suppose.


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Response to Plaid Adder (Original post)

Sat Oct 6, 2012, 08:57 AM

23. I don't rec much, but this one is getting one.

Never thought of it from that perspective.

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Response to Plaid Adder (Original post)

Sat Oct 6, 2012, 11:34 AM

25. K & R!

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Response to Plaid Adder (Original post)

Sat Oct 6, 2012, 11:49 AM

26. K and R +10000000

Excellent article...well expressed..I was saying just this sort of thing Wednesday evening..though as in Mitt's words "I could have been more elequent"

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Response to Plaid Adder (Original post)

Sat Oct 6, 2012, 12:00 PM

27. Some from the generation that promoted "Dick and Jane" and "Mr. Roger's Neighborhood"

2 settings that showcased "suburb" and "small town", were apparently incensed at the "urban" that was Sesame Street.

I started 1st grade in 1967 and during that time, was transitioned from the "Dick and Jane" book world to the urban-focused "Bank Street Readers", something that reflected MY reality



and not someone else's.



And at some point in early 1970, my teacher announced that our classmate, Matt Robinson, Jr., would be leaving to move up to New York City with the rest of his family, to join his father who was playing a character named "Gordon" in a new show that was running on our local channel 12 (WHYY) called "Sesame Street".

And the rest is history.

For ANY rethug to torpedo something that reflects the reality of some 50% of the U.S. population that lives in cities and large towns nationwide, it underscores the biggest disgrace that they can heap on this nation as one that values "freedom" and "family values", and not the bullshit that they call these tenets of a society.

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Response to Plaid Adder (Original post)

Sat Oct 6, 2012, 12:06 PM

28. Sesame Street teaches kids to be tolerant and kind. The 'Baggers HATE that.

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Response to Plaid Adder (Original post)

Sat Oct 6, 2012, 12:08 PM

29. You're right, and that's why Big Bird is my new DU avatar

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Response to Plaid Adder (Original post)

Sat Oct 6, 2012, 12:12 PM

30. Damn, I am so glad to see you posting again.

You always bring a certain point of view to the discussion, something unexpected and refreshing.

Thank you.

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Response to Plaid Adder (Original post)

Sat Oct 6, 2012, 02:07 PM

31. My kids grew up with Barney. I know Barney got alot of crap - BUT -

the show was all about love and acceptance. They had kids of every color, kids in wheelchairs, kids that couldn't see.
Everyone was included and everyone was equal.

Every show was a new problem that Barney led the way to a positive outcome, always with a smile, always with a song.

WTH is wrong with people that have a problem with love and acceptance?????

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Response to jillan (Reply #31)

Sat Oct 6, 2012, 04:15 PM

39. Barney's like a benign tumor.

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Response to Gidney N Cloyd (Reply #39)

Sat Oct 6, 2012, 05:22 PM

42. LOL!



So what are Teletubbies?

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Response to jillan (Reply #31)

Sat Oct 6, 2012, 05:20 PM

41. My son loved Barney, too. I'm not sure what kid doesn't. After a fashion, they grow out of Barney

but man, mine would stand up, rock and roll, hop around, clap to the songs.. He def. loved Barney. I couldn't stand it, but that was when I took the time to clean... The one show we both really loved was the lion one where they lived in a library and read books, animated.. etc... It was kind of like taking the spot of Reading Rainbow (that was my absolute favorite.. and Mr. Roger when he took the choo choo to the puppet play area)...

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Response to Plaid Adder (Original post)

Sat Oct 6, 2012, 02:08 PM

32. well either that or Big Bird has been working on 'rithmatic and understands whar 47% means.

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Response to Plaid Adder (Original post)

Sat Oct 6, 2012, 02:54 PM

33. It's the PUBLIC Broadcasting System.

Anything public is BAD BAD BAD I tells ya!

Romney at the debate: "The private market and individual responsibility always work best."

Many Republicans, of course, don't like anything public because they have to pay taxes to support those things and they don't always get a return on investment because they don't use those things.

"You don't really expect me to ride the bus with those parasites, do you? I'll drive."

And, indeed, anything in the public domain may not conform to someone's rigid religious or political ideology.

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Response to Plaid Adder (Original post)

Sat Oct 6, 2012, 03:52 PM

35. Conservatives think when someone is speaking a foreign language around them,

they are talking about him/her.

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Response to Plaid Adder (Original post)

Sat Oct 6, 2012, 03:55 PM

36. Holy ham hocks, but it's great when you show up here.

Thanks, Plaid.

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Response to Plaid Adder (Original post)

Sat Oct 6, 2012, 04:07 PM

37. My two reasons he does

Sesame Street doesn't run advertising. Commercial networks' "educational" programming mostly teaches sugar and fat are yummy and only toys that need their own nuclear power plants are fun. Sesame Street teaches other things.

More important, CPB is a government program that works: it is cheap, does what it's supposed to, and people like it. It is educational in more ways than one: public TV stations are often attached to either high schools or colleges and provide job training.

A TV station that doesn't run commercial after commercial or hours of GOP propaganda, and proves that the government can do good things? We can't have that, now can we?

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Response to Plaid Adder (Original post)

Sat Oct 6, 2012, 04:09 PM

38. Another Big Bird offense against Mr. Romney

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Response to Plaid Adder (Original post)

Sat Oct 6, 2012, 04:34 PM

40. K R

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Response to Plaid Adder (Original post)

Sat Oct 6, 2012, 05:53 PM

43. Privatization is the gobber mantra.

Let the privatizers pick the bones of anything public. Whether it be Yellowstone or Big Bird.. With these guys the whole world is little more than turning something decent into someone's profit margin.

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Response to Plaid Adder (Original post)

Sat Oct 6, 2012, 05:55 PM

44. Simply brilliant

Rec

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Response to Plaid Adder (Original post)

Sat Oct 6, 2012, 06:03 PM

45. Big Bird = a symbol of diversity and tolerance & therefore deserving of hate

well said, OP!

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Response to Plaid Adder (Original post)

Sat Oct 6, 2012, 06:23 PM

46. There is a Mormon owned PBS affiliate in Utah

kbyutv.org: watch KBYU-11, Mormon-owned PBS affiliate, online

http://www.kbyutv.org/

Their kids' programming includes Sesame Street

http://www.kbyutv.org/kidsandfamily/programming/

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Response to Plaid Adder (Original post)

Sat Oct 6, 2012, 07:46 PM

47. Brilliant analysis!

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Response to Plaid Adder (Original post)

Sat Oct 6, 2012, 07:58 PM

48. Every Post a Winner!

Don't be a stranger, now, PA! We miss you.

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Response to Plaid Adder (Original post)

Sat Oct 6, 2012, 08:53 PM

49. K & R

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Response to Plaid Adder (Original post)

Sat Oct 6, 2012, 09:12 PM

50. You are certainly right on about that. But another reason is

because Right wingers want to dumb down America so they can have more malleable right wingers to educate with their sick views.

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Response to Plaid Adder (Original post)

Sat Oct 6, 2012, 09:22 PM

51. Brilliant K&R Thank you for putting this into perspective!

I'm old enough to remember when The Learning Channel started and what it once was... Who chooses programming like Toddlers & Tiaras......
Oh, and don't get me started on the History Channel, Discovery Channel etc...

From Wikipedia: "The Learning Channel: “a place for learning minds” was founded in 1972 by the Department of Health, Education, and Welfare and NASA as an informative/instructional network focused on providing real education through the medium of TV; it was distributed at no cost by NASA satellite.
It was privatized in 1980"

PBS is needed now, more than ever!

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Response to Plaid Adder (Original post)

Sun Oct 7, 2012, 03:11 AM

52. thanks Plaid Adder! nm

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