Newsday TV writer Marvin Kitman took the controversy over the comical propaganda of “The Reagans” miniseries and somehow found a way to make the MRC and the RNC and boycottcbs.org into al-Qaeda (or perhaps just Mujaheddin) equivalents:
“Protesters against TV shows today are like cultural terrorists. They send their shoulder-fired Stinger missives into the air – e-mail is the weapon of choice these days, although snail mail and antiquated phone calls also are in their arsenal – at shows they don’t approve of. Often, the protests are over shows the protesters haven’t seen. It doesn’t matter. The facts would only get in the way. Firing missives into the air is what they do. It’s what they feel democracy is all about: the prevention of diversity of opinion. The First Amendment is for everybody, except those they disagree with.” The column’s headline calls for CBS to “Impeach Les” Moonves for his cowardice.
Is there a weaker argument out there than “we haven’t seen” the miniseries? Weren’t the leaked script elements enough to convince viewers they weren’t going to get a fair portrayal, let alone a JFK-style great-man flick? And since when does the First Amendment dictate that you are NOT free in America to protest a forthcoming TV movie? Let’s imagine for a moment that the miniseries was titled “The Kitmans,” with a cartoonish Marvin proclaiming HE was the Antichrist. Would it feel like a First Amendment triumph to him that he was smeared like this in front of millions?
The silver medal for sophistry goes to the Miamia Herald’s Ed Wasserman, who sounded like he was writing a bad direct-mail fundraising letter in transferring all conservative opposition to “The Reagans” to the machinery of the State.
“The instruments of suppression here — the Republican National Committee and a coven of political hacks and journalistic mouth-breathers allied with the party’s rightmost wing — are only a quarter-step removed from the White House and from the full might of the state.”