There’s too much mouthing off

by Jim Longworth

After Janet Jackson exposed her breast for one second during a Super Bowl, the FCC went on a crusade to clean up broadcasting.

The agency levied record fines against Howard Stern, Infinity, CBS and others, and made it clear that any foul language or display of nudity could result in a $500,000 fine for each incident.

Broadcasters were understandably concerned. For example, if a streaker ran naked behind Sandra Hughes while she was anchoring the news, then WFMY could be fined a half million dollars.

This is the same FCC that is also cracking down on any TV station that fails to close caption its programs, leading us to believe that the government is regulating the spoken word, even if those words can’t be heard. And that brings me to college basketball.

Every week, any number of college coaches can be seen on TV screaming obscenities, including camera close-ups which show them using the F word.

Both the deaf and hearing audiences can read lips and are clearly aware of what has been said.

So why, then, shouldn’t the networks be fined $500,000 per F word?.

Is an obscenity any less obscene just because we only SEE it being spoken?

The FCC needs to be consistent on indecency, and coaches need to be consistent on decency.

Both have been guilty of entirely too much lip service.

Jim Longworth is host of ‘“Triad Today’” which can be seen Friday mornings at 6:30 a.m. on ABC45 (cable channel 7), and Sunday nights at 10 p.m. on UPN48 (cable channel 14).