- The Washington Times - Friday, February 4, 2005

Gay sponge?

“Several major newspapers have … implied that [Focus on the Family Chairman James] Dobson believes SpongeBob [SquarePants] is gay. Well I know Dobson and my 2-year-old son knows SpongeBob, and nothing could be further from the truth. …

“Contrary to the media spin, Dobson didn’t attack the Sponge. Instead, he warned that SpongeBob, Barney, Winnie the Pooh, and dozens of other popular children’s characters may soon be used … to promote the normalization of homosexuality in America’s public schools. …

“The characters are featured in a video and educational curriculum that is being distributed to 61,000 schools across the country by the We Are Family Foundation. …

“Big Media’s criticism of Dobson shows once again that they just don’t get it — America’s parents don’t want SpongeBob, Big Bird and Elmo co-opted in an effort to persuade their kids that homosexuality is ‘normal and natural.’ Dobson sounded the alarm and now the liberal press is taking him to task.”

Bill Maier, writing on “Dobson’s SpongeBob views distorted,” Monday in the Rocky Mountain News

Regressive trend

“At the heart of two great spiritual cornerstones of Western culture, the Hebrew Bible and ancient Greek tragedy, is a movement out into the world, away from the starting point of family. … The motion in both these masterworks mirrors the development of the individual, away from parents and siblings and out into the world of strangers. That’s pretty much the way things have gone in modern serious and popular culture, too.

“[The ABC drama series] ‘Alias,’ however, is an example of a growing trend, which is to resist the motion into the strange, indifferent world and substitute family issues for worldly situations and events. One of [protagonist] Sydney’s colleagues is her father. … Her mother was killed by her father because, as he solemnly explains to Sydney, ‘your mother was a security risk.’ … Another of Sydney’s teammates is her half-sister. A lot of the bad guys themselves are unhappy siblings, murderous spouses, and suchlike. So even the world outside is ruled by the same intimate-emotional dynamic as the emotionally intimate world the team inhabits.”

Lee Siegel, writing on “Me Time,” Monday in the New Republic Online at www.tnr.com

Commie sequel

“Nominations for this year’s Academy Awards were announced last week, and due to a technicality, Walter Salles’s acclaimed ‘The Motorcycle Diaries’ isn’t eligible for the foreign language Oscar. …

“Well, boo hoo.

“The movie — executive-produced by Robert Redford — follows the adventures of the young Ernesto ‘Che’ Guevara on a motorcycle odyssey across South America in 1951-52. It was during this trip, the film suggests, that Che first came to grips with the social injustices which would inspire his revolutionary conscience.

“Despite its Oscar snub, the movie’s critical and commercial success raises the intriguing possibility of a sequel. Perhaps it will pick up with Che’s life after he joins forces with Fidel Castro in Cuba. The potential material is rich: scenes of Che presiding over the early firing squads after the Revolution, scenes of Che establishing Cuba’s ‘labor camp’ system — which was eventually used to imprison not only dissidents but homosexuals and AIDS victims. …

“Sounds like another hit to me.”

Mark Goldblatt, writing on “Snubbing Che,” Tuesday in the American Spectator Online at www.spectator.org

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