Liberals always have a tendancy to assume that anything that happens in the South is either due to discrimination or out of the movie Deliverance. National Public Radio's "Fresh Air with Terry Gross," a talk show focussing mainly on the arts with occasional ventures into politics, was dropped suddenly by Mississippi Public Broadcasting around Christmas of last year due to budget cuts, but had returned until last week. MPB cited "recurring inappropriate content" as the reason for the second drop.
Bloggers such as Gawker's Hamilton Nolan and The Huffington Post's Jason Linkins were quick to make unfounded speculations that the "inappropriate content" consisted of three interviews about movies with gay characters broadcast 9 July.
However, Gawker's Adrian Chen reported yesterday that the "inapprorpriate content" was actually an interview in the July 7 show with comedian Louis CK, where he talked about how he likes to have sex with his shirt on, a development for The Huffington Post and Gawker that was straight out of left field.
Tom Ford? An interview with Colin Firth about his role in Ford's ‘A Single Man'? Another interview with ‘The Kids Are All Right' filmmaker Lisa Cholodenko? I guess that's just way too much gay for Mississippi to handle!
It is not surprising that the first instinct of The Huffington Post was: "Mississippi. Deep South. Fresh Air dropped by MPB. Fresh Air talked about gay characters in movies. Ergo, reason for dropping was homophobia."
The deep-seated liberal prejudice of the South, clearly on display at The Huffington Post, always leads them to leap to conclusions that fly in the face of reality. Like the other day, when MSNBC's Chris Matthews expressed confusion that South Carolina nominated Nikki Haley for governor while voting against Barack Obama:
How do you figure your state out? It's pretty conservative obviously. It's Strom Thurmond country in many ways . . . But then you nominated . . . an Indian-American woman, Nikki Haley. . . . but what's that about?
Never mind that on the same day, Tim Scott, a black Republican state legislator supported by the Tea Party, defeated Strom Thurmond's son Paul in a House primary.
Clearly, the idea that Southerners can do things without being racist or discriminatory is as foreign to the minds of liberals as northerners doing discriminatory things.
The offending portion of the Louis CK interview was played when someone called the offices of Mississippi's state colleges and was put on hold. They complained and MPB's "zero-tolerance policy for inappropriate conduct kicked in" and a mystery was born.
MPB issued this statement:
First, we want to thank all of our listeners who have provided us feedback regarding our decision to remove Fresh Air from our programming lineup. Your feedback is important to us and we hear you. We hope you understand – if not agree with – our perspective.
Mississippi Public Broadcasting strives to deliver educational, informative, and meaningful content to its listeners. After careful consideration and review we have determined that Fresh Air does not meet this goal over time. Too often Fresh Air’s interviews include gratuitous discussions on issues of an explicit sexual nature. We believe that most of these discussions do not contribute to or meaningfully enhance serious-minded public discourse on sexual issues. Our listeners who wish to hear Fresh Air may find it online.