By:  Pat Austin

SHREVEPORT – In a move that should be a surprise to no one at this point, the Orpheum Theater in Memphis has pulled the 1939 film, Gone with the Wind, from its annual summer screening after 34 years, citing complaints from offended citizens.

In a statement to the New York Times:

Brett Batterson, president of the Orpheum Theater Group, said … “The Orpheum carefully reviewed all of them. As an organization whose stated mission is to ‘entertain, educate and enlighten the communities it serves,’ the Orpheum cannot show a film that is insensitive to a large segment of its local population.”

The slippery slope is now in our rear view mirror, folks.  We’re done here.

We can’t screen certain films because they are “insensitive to a large segment” of the local population?  Just imagine where this will now lead.  Let your mind wander and just imagine the films that could be offensive to any large group of people.  The list could be staggering.

I expect we won’t be seeing To Kill a Mockingbird on television or in libraries anymore, or The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, or even Harry Potter, because certainly people might be offended.

Let me guess – these are probably the same people walking around in their Che Guevara t-shirts.

The merits of the film are long established and don’t need my small voice to vouch for it; it won ten Oscars including one for Hattie McDaniel who was the first black woman to win an Oscar.

Margaret Mitchell once said that the theme of her novel is survival.  “What quality is it that makes some people able to survive catastrophes and others, apparently just as brave and strong, go under?”

I’m not sure the history of our nation will survive censorship.

The point is less the film itself but that our selective outrage has moved from statues to film.  We truly are in Ray Bradbury’s world.  When will the book burnings begin?

As for The Orpheum I would have applauded them had they had the nerve to stand up to intimidation and rejected censorship.

Pat Austin blogs at And So it Goes in Shreveport.

I’d like to say I was shocked at this story at real clear politics:

In an interview with NBC’s Chuck Todd, Attorney General Loretta Lynch says that on Monday, the FBI will release edited transcripts of the 911 calls made by the Orlando nightclub shooter to the police during his rampage.

“What we’re not going to do is further proclaim this man’s pledges of allegiance to terrorist groups, and further his propaganda,” Lynch said. “We are not going to hear him make his assertions of allegiance [to the Islamic State].”

Or to rephrase it: We are going to censor any information that is not consistent with the approved narrative of the Democrat party in particular and the White House in particular.

When I read this the first thing that came to mind was something I saw at the National Press Club last week.

On a big screen when you come in there is a statement concerning Donald Trump’s decision to remove the credentials from the Washington Post meaning that while they can cover his events they don’t have the access that other members of the press do.

It was presented with the self righteousness of a group that does not hint that they can still cover the events and report on them, only on Trump assault on free speech, or that there is a reason why the press is often described as “Democrats with bylines”.

Now while one can debate this move by the Trump campaign maybe it’s just me but I’d say the suppression of the record on the 2nd most successful Islamic Terror attack on the United States homeland is something that the national press club might find objectionable.

So my question is this: Will the National Press Club put up a display objecting just as strongly to the censoring of the public record by this Administration on the 2nd most successful Islamic Terror attack on the US for all Americans as they will Donald Trump?

I suspect to ask the question is to answer it.

By: Pat Austincen

general-beauregard-statue-removed
P.G.T. Beauregard monument

SHREVEPORT – I wrote in this space a few weeks ago about the controversy surrounding the removal of four Confederate monuments in New Orleans.  To recap briefly, Mayor Mitch Landrieu (brother of “Katrina Mary” Landrieu) has organized the removal of monuments commemorating P.G.T. Beauregard, Robert E. Lee, Jefferson Davis, and Liberty Monument. The Times-Picayune has photos and descriptions of each monument here. In the place of the Jefferson Davis monument, Mayor Landrieu would also like to rename Jefferson Davis Parkway in honor of a retired Xavier University president.

The City Council voted 6-1 in support of the monument removal despite public outcry from a majority of the NOLA citizens and local preservationists.  Immediately after the Council’s vote, a federal lawsuit was filed to prevent removal despite the fact that Mayor Landrieu already had contractors in place to begin removal immediately.

So where are we today? The case is garnering national attention and has been covered by The New York Times, the New York Post, and The Atlantic as well as attracting the attention of bloggers throughout the country.

Last week preservationists made their case in court:

During the two hour and 30-minute hearing, U.S. District Court Judge Carl Barbier heard arguments after several plaintiffs, including the Monumental Task Force, went to court to block the city’s plan to remove four Confederate monuments.

Preservationists are looking for an injunction, stopping the city from removing the statues of Robert E. Lee, P.T.G. Beauregard, Jefferson Davis and the Liberty Place monument, which city attorneys called “monuments to white supremacy” during the hearing.

“It looked to me like the city was on stronger ground,” said Donald “Chick” Foret, WWL-TV legal analyst. “The preservationists are on very weak ground. They don’t have any law, they don’t have any evidence. The judge was searching trying to find some jurisdiction. To get into this building, you’ve got to have federal jurisdiction, some federal law that applies, and the judge said he just didn’t see it.”

If the judge does in fact toss the lawsuit, the only recourse preservationists will have will be in state court, an avenue they will certainly pursue.  Meanwhile, Landrieu’s crews are out taking measurements and preparing to go ahead with removal once the injunction preventing that is lifted.

Landrieu will have to find a new company to do the removal, however, as the first crew he hired has walked off the job after having received death threats.

Yesterday, a small group of protestors was at the Beauregard statue making their case; photographers and tourists are snapping photos of the monuments in their rightful setting before they are removed.

My question is this: where does this stop? On a national level, where does this stop?  If the case is, as the city attorney says, that these are “monuments to white supremacy,” are the old plantations next?

I’m really trying to see both sides of this but as a student of history I just can’t see it in this case; I find it extremely difficult to believe that someone walked by the statue of Beauregard one day and said, “Damn, I’m really offended by that.”  Someone, at some point, decided we should all be offended and so here we are.

The Southern Poverty Law Center filed an amicus brief in support of the monument removal, again citing the white supremacy argument. The SPLC is an organization that preaches tolerance, something they seem to be short on in this case.

Perhaps we need these statues to remember what happens to a country when differing opinions and perceptions tear us apart.

Perhaps we all need to practice a little tolerance.

It’s always important to follow the money. Landrieu has said that the city of NOLA will not be paying for the removal, that this won’t cost the city one dime, however, the identity of his benefactor is a secret.  Who is paying for this?

An anonymous donor has agreed to foot the bill for the removal of four Confederate-related statues, the city announced in a letter this week to the New Orleans City Council.

It will cost an estimated $144,000 to remove and transport the statues of Robert E. Lee, P.G.T. Beauregard and Jefferson Davis, as well as a monument to the Battle of Liberty Place, according to the letter. The donor agreed to pay for the entire operation.

The slippery-slope aspect of the whole operation concerns me. Just because some aspects of our history are ugly and unpleasant, we can’t erase them. We are to learn from them; we are to honor the sacrifices of our ancestors whatever they were, and we are to always remember. If we sanitize and attempt to erase history we are greatly diminishing our ability to learn from it.

 

Pat Austin blogs at And So it Goes in Shreveport.

By:  Pat Austin

SHREVEPORT —  History will remember us as the generation that was offended by everything.

Where will it end?

A couple of news stories caught my eye this week: the first was that the Sons of Confederate Veterans are filing suit against the City of Natchitoches after being forbidden to march in their annual Christmas parade; the SCV group has marched in the parade for the past twenty-five years, but now we are offended by their flag so they can’t march.  In a statement, the mayor of Natchitoches explained that he is not banning the display of the flag in the city but simply not allowing it on display in the parade.  The Natchitoches Christmas festival and parade is huge in these parts and attracts over 100,000 visitors each year.

The other story that raised my hackles was the perpetual offended-by-Huck-Finn story that in its latest conception has a private school in Philadelphia banning the book from the classroom (although it will still be in their library).  A group of students said the book “made them uncomfortable” and so out it goes.  Perhaps the school should look at how the book is taught rather than condemn the book.  Perhaps there is something about love and tolerance that could be learned there in the hands of the right teacher.  What will these students do when they are “uncomfortable” in the real world, post-graduation?  What will we ban from the classroom next?

Perhaps the most ridiculous group to be offended recently would be those who were offended by the red Starbucks cup.  I would be difficult to imagine a controversy any more ludicrous.

The logic of it all is absurd. Some individuals and some groups are offended by the Confederate flag so we must eliminate it.  Some groups are offended by Christian nativity scenes, so we must eliminate them; this is happening across the country. We are even offended by yoga, for crying out loud. We are offended by how you sit when on a subway.  We are offended by the Washington REDSKINS.

The list is endless.

The fact is that political correctness and elementary-school-everyone-wins-coddling has turned us into a society of crybabies.  Yes, there are things in our society that are offensive sometimes but it’s time to man-up, if you’ll pardon that sexist phrase, and get over it.

The whole “I’m offended” culture offends me.

Pat Austin blogs at And So it Goes in Shreveport.

Tomorrow on DaTechGuy on DaRadio’s Pre CPAC edition we’re talking Free Speech.

During the first hour we will talk to Pam Geller of Atlas Shrugs. We’ll talk the CPAC lockout and the attempts to silence her and Robert Spencer.

In the second hour we will have a bit of a potpourri on the subject, we’ll talk about Robert Spencer and CPAC and the Catholic Men’s Conference and the Kimberlin crew vs Blogbash.

To hear us tune into AM 1390 Plymouth, WBNW 1120 Concord or 970 WESO in Southbridge to find me on your dial, or simply pick up the feed from here the Money Matter Radio Network. (Remember if you want me on your local station give them a call and tell them YOU want DaTechGuy on DaRadio!)

And remember you can find us on TuneIn as well as FTR radio online. (Keep an eye on the FTR schedule for the replay as well.)

It all comes up tomorrow Noon EST on DaTechGuy on DaRadio and you can join the conversation toll-free at 888-9-fedora (888)-933-3672)

There are certain movies that is you have cable are constantly on the set, the most common one that comes to mind is Harrison Ford’s the Fugitive but a close second is the action comedy True Lies from 1994 featuring Arnold Schwarzenegger, Jamie Lee Curtis and Tom Arnold with a supporting cast that includes a young Eliza Dushku as their daughter, Tia Carrere and Art Malik as the bad guys, Bill Paxton as a sleazy used car salesman and Charlton Heston is a one scene cameo that he simply owns ” So far, this is not blowing my skirt up, gentlemen.

The basic plot is Harry Tasker (Arnold) works for the Ultimate US spy group Omega section, while his wife thinks he is a salesmen. He is so busy literally saving the world that he neglects his wife and family to the point where when used car salesman (Paxton) pretends to be a spy asking for help to get closer to his wife (Curtis) she responds.

Totally devastated he gets himself distracted from the huge case he is working on resulting in them both being kidnapped by Crimson Jihad each thinking the other is the target of the terrorists.

Can Arnold escape with his wife, stop the nuclear bomb from going off and save kidnapped daughter?

There are several memorable chase scenes including one with a horse and a motorcycle a great confrontation scene when Helen (Curtis) finally is told the truth. The performances are so strong up and down the cast, particularly Malik and Arnold (who should hope this is the only movie of his ever seen as he is simply PERFECT) whose monologue during the closing credits should not be missed.

This picture is both fun and funny and I would highly recommend it to anyone.

The film was rated R for violence and some suggestive situations. There is however no nudity, zip zero nada. There is an incredibly hot (and funny) “striptease” scene just before the terrorists get them, and a catfight between Curtis and Carrere but nothing that would get beyond a pg-13 today not even a single nipple…

…yet the movie has a TV-MA rating.

As a rule TV-MA on cable is reserved for movies with actual sex in them, or movies with disembowelments and the like, action movies like the Rambo series are all rated R, but not True lies.

I submit and suggest that there is only one reason for this…political correctness.

True lies has two factors that are totally missing from almost any movie of the same type made since it came out.


1. ALL the terrorists in the movie are unambiguously Muslim Jihadists

2. There is no mitigating factor or redeeming feature to their cause

I submit and suggest that if the villains in this movie were neo-Nazis or drug lords or white supremacists this movie would have an R rating with a greater chance that a younger person will see it and an older person will give it a shot.

Instead with TV MA means that if any sort of parental control is set it can’t and won’t be seen by anyone underage, ad an adult not familiar with the film will automatically assume that there is something that makes this movie other than just another action film and will pass it by.

Some forms of propaganda and censorship are right in front of you, others are subtle.

Is this a big deal in the long run? Likely not, Am I simply annoyed that I have to put in the block code to watch this movie? Slightly, but what does it say about us that in the age of 9/11 we have gone so deep into denial concerning Islamic terror that an action comedy with Muslim villains dangerous for the young to see?

Update: And here is something on the less light and less subtle:

Lady Gaga has canceled her sold-out show in Indonesia over security concerns after Muslim hard-liners threatened violence if the pop diva went ahead with her “Born This Way Ball,” promoters said Sunday.

The Islamic Defenders Front said Lady Gaga’s sexy clothes and provocative dance moves would corrupt youth in the world’s most populous Muslim country.

If you think that is going to stay on the other side of the world, you haven’t been paying attention.

As you might recall Morning Joe went so over the top at the start of Friday’s show than I turned it off and watched the stooges all morning.

When the Eric Fuller statement came out and the left jumped all over it I was sure he would be the lead story on Monday, that was until he decided to publicly threaten a tea party person during the taping of ABC’s town hall on the Tuscon shootings.

Now I’m not a news director but I’d think that the irony of a shooting victim of Jared Zeitgeist Longhner threatening a tea party member, being arrested and involuntarily committed might actually be a story of interest that might bring discussion.

It would be interesting to see how they deal with this story, wouldn’t it? They have dealt with it all right. They’ve dealt it right out of the deck.

I have not seen a single mention of the event, not even a one liner in the base news segment. I’ve been watching since 6:04 and not a peep. Not a word.

Does anyone actually believe that if the roles had been reversed and the tea party person had been arrested it would have been the top story? How can these people actually justify this omission and is there anyone other than naive old me who expected better of them, that is actually surprised?

Let’s not pretend that the MSM is populated by “journalists” The MSM’s making Eric Fuller an unperson proves that it is now only populated by “journolist“.

Update: Nope not a word although I missed the “what have we learned today” segment but an inclusion there would be pretty lame. I’ve learned that MSNBC would rather protect their niche market than report news. I’ve also learned that Joe Scarborough was damn lucky not to be there to get a part of the blame today. Finally i’ve learned that an Instalanche is a great way to start the day. If you are a Glenn Reynolds fan who missed him on my show Saturday Night you can listen to it here. If you are one of those national advertisers that Glenn said is missing out on the 50,000 watts of my radio show, the ad rates are here.

Update 2: 24 hours later Way too early with Willie Geist discovers Eric Fuller reporting his apology. Will that rehabilitate him enough to make him the poster boy for the “blame the tea party” left? We will see.

Update 3: At least one reader was unclear on who Fuller was. This link explains it.

I seem to recall a time when people who were considered “liberal” absolutely rushed to buy banned books and music to support artists repressed by uptight adults who didn’t get it.

Who ever thought that would be Canada:

The Dire Straits song “Money for Nothing” was ruled by the Canadian Broadcast Standards Council to be “extremely offensive” and thus inappropriate for airing because it uses an anti-gay slur

No word on if the Canadians have banned Mel Brooks Blazing Saddles for this scene

I remember this video well for several reasons: The computer animation was not common in videos of the time, the song itself is pretty good and having known a lot of blue-collar guys they EXACTLY thought that about rock stars figuring they got rich the easy way.

Most bands will tell you that with rare exceptions it takes a lot of practice and years of work in cheap clubs to get to the point where you might have one hit, or one video. It’s not the type of heavy lifting that a laborer does but it is work (the easiest job is one somebody else is doing). There are rewards if you hit it big but most bands don’t.

Exit question is this: Has the Canadian Broadcast Standards council banned all rap music or comedy routines that includes a word that rhymes with “trigger”? If not why?

Anyway a count of the number of downloads of Money for Nothing yesterday would be quite interesting.