ND Crank Rant: One Million Moms Talking Loudly But Doing Little
It's been awhile since the I've been ramped up enough for a rant, maybe the holidays softened me up. I was too happy and holly jolly to get up the venom towards any person, organization or industry. However the holidays are long over now and one of my least favorite seasons, Spring, is fast approaching. And yeah I know its a beautiful time of year, but my allergies kill me during the springtime.
As the title suggests, the target of my rant today is the One Million Mom group, an extension of the conservative Christian organization called the American Family Association. The AFA has been around for awhile and its main battle targets are, as one would guess, abortion, homosexuality, and pornography. Using protests, boycotts, letter/email writing campaigns and buyouts as their usual weapons of choice. The One Million Mom group's focus is squarely on protecting the children according to their purpose statement:
OneMillionMoms.com was begun to give moms an impact with the decision-makers and let them know we are upset with the messages they are sending our children and the values (or lack of them) they are pushing.
Our goal is to stop the exploitation of our children, especially by the entertainment media (TV, music, movies, etc.). Mom, OneMillionMoms.com is the most powerful tool you have to stand against the immorality, violence, vulgarity and profanity the entertainment media is throwing at your children. It is time to fight back!
We are searching for one million moms who are willing to join the fight for our children. We want our children to have the best chance possible of living in a moral society.
So hurry up Moms, once the one million mom cut-off number is reached everyone else will be relegated to the wait list. I kid, just a little joke. Unlike One Million Moms which in my opinion is a big joke. And not really a funny one at that.
This group came into my range of sight when they recently came out against the Toys R Us toy store chain for carrying an issue of Archie comics, which celebrates a same sex marriage on its cover, with one of the couple being a service man in uniform. The OMM formal complaint about this is as follows:
Toys 'R' Us employees do not actually set up the displays; they leave this up to the vendor, but they should be aware of the merchandise being sold in their stores nonetheless. These comic books are sold at the front checkout counters so they are highly visible to employees, managers, customers and children. Unfortunately, children are now being exposed to same-sex marriage in a toy store. This is the last place a parent would expect to be confronted with questions from their children on topics that are too complicated for them to understand. Issues of this nature are being introduced too early and too soon, which is becoming extremely common and unnecessary.
A trip to the toy store turns into a premature discussion on sexual orientation and is completely uncalled for. Toys 'R' Us should be more responsible in the products they carry.
Okay so here's the thing. The world isn't going to help you avoid discussions you don't want to have. As a parent you have to be ready to answer questions. Same sex couples are out there in the world, same sex marriages are now legal in 8 states in the Union. My governor here in Maryland just signed a law legalizing same sex marriage. Whatever one's personal feelings are on the topic, its out there. Be ready to answer questions. You can't take the approach of hiding it and shoving it away under the notion you are protecting your child. Being a parent, being a Mom its your job to protect your child by arming them with knowledge and understanding.
Another larger problem with this organization is their limited form of "attack" which shows to me that maybe they aren't sincere in their actions to protect children. In their purpose statement they said they wanted to protect children from violence and vulgarity. So they had no problem with all the war toys they walked past to get to the one Archie comic book on the stands at the cashier. There was no problem with some of suggestive outfits worn by the fashion dolls marketed to their young impressionable daughters. I see no mention of advertising for violent video games sold at Toys R Us. I guess there isn't any problem with awkward discussions on killing even though the Ten Commandments tells Christians not to do so.
On a personal level I don't have a problem with this issue of Archie being sold at Toys R Us. I won't stop me from shopping their, nor do I agree with any of OMM's current issues their are fighting against. I can't even respect them as a group because I find they aren't consistent or true in their campaign. But you know this is just one issue, maybe just maybe they are tackling some other hard hitting issues and its just this one that is grabbing the attention of us comic book fanboys & girls. According to the OMM website, other issues they are actively fighting include:
An email campaign for the Clorox corporation to take this Liquid-Plumr Double Impact commercial off the air, because it is too sexually charged according to the sensibilities of the OMM group. Sorry maybe some of the OMM's find this commercial too exciting and that's scary to them, I just find it funny. Kudos to the agency that finally made an entertaining commercial about getting a nasty, greasy clog out of your drain pipe. Either way, this is weaker than the Archie comic issue:
An email campaign to ABC/Disney to keep GBC from airing. Because in their opinion the show is Christian bashing and mocks Christianity. What the...? Now that is serious let me see here, we might be on to something here. Wait, no, not really. Yeah okay not really. From what I see this show's target isn't Christians. But it's those folks at church who are back stabbers, judgmental, and unfaithful who portray themselves as Christian. These people probably even believe themselves to be good Christians when they are really more concerned with their position and power in the church or community. These hypocrites are a comedy gold mine. A true Christian shouldn't have a problem with these kinds of people being outed and made fun of. And at the end of the day this is a comedy, a satire. Not a documentary with some evil bent to it.
Looking over the other issues of this organization they are against Ellen Degeneres being a spokesperson for JCPenney essentially because she is a lesbian, they don't like a Macy's ad that features same-sex married couple. They have had some success in getting sponsors to pull advertising from episodes of programs they found objectionable. Overall their targets are trivial or unfortunate in my opinion, specifically in the open targeting of homosexuals not for any particular action which I find very disappointing.
It's a great disappointment that a movement that has had success in mobilizing people, in energizing people to act and their actions whether I agree with them or not, are so limited and trivial. I just think of the real changes that could be made, some of the real wrongs that could be righted if that kind of organization and energy were directed in another direction. Unfortunately this energy is being used to keep our children safe from the dangers of a sexy drain cleaner commercial and a comic book cover.