"The stations that refused to show the movie were not just in Baton Rouge and Biloxi but in cities like Boston, Detroit, Cleveland and Baltimore. For some reason, a number of them replaced "Ryan" with the 1986 movie "Hoosiers," the heartwarming tale of high school basketball players who claw their way to the championship in 1950's Indiana. But even Indiana and jocks have no immunity from the indecency cops in 2004. Less than 48 hours after "Hoosiers" supplanted the censored "Ryan," the Pittsburgh Panthers quarterback Tyler Palko used the Bono word in a live interview with NBC Sports's Tom Hammond after his team's upset of Notre Dame. Unless the F.C.C. wants to open a legal Pandora's box, it now has no choice but to apply the same principles to a victorious football player's spontaneous expletive that it did to a victorious rock star's.

For anyone who doubts that we are entering a new era, let's flash back just a few years. "Saving Private Ryan," with its "CSI"-style disembowelments and expletives undeleted, was nationally broadcast by ABC on Veteran's Day in both 2001 and 2002 without incident, and despite the protests of family-values groups. What has changed between then and now? A government with the zeal to control both information and culture has received what it calls a mandate. Media owners who once might have thought that complaints by the American Family Association about a movie like "Saving Private Ryan" would go nowhere are keenly aware that the administration wants to reward its base. Merely the threat that the F.C.C. might punish a TV station or a network is all that's needed to push them onto the slippery slope of self-censorship before anyone in Washington even bothers to act. This is McCarthyism, "moral values" style."


I thought this was an excellent article about how things are changing due to fear and an overzealous need to control clothed in "moral values".