Beliefnet
Faith, Media & Culture

Here’s today’s Faith, Media & Culture Hot List. And, I must say, it is a bit disturbing how many items involve organs, and not the musical kind.

1. A-Twitter over Weiner. From The Wrap: An errant Twit-pic of his bulging underwear landed Rep. Anthony Weiner in a doozy of a political scandal. Thus when the New York congressman finally copped up to his sexting in a nearly hour-long press conference on Monday, Twitter exploded with quips, dick jokes and expressions of shock from around the Internet.
Comment: It’s hard to believe this is the same medium that was given so much credit for the Arab Spring.

2. Scott Pelley takes CBS anchor chair. From The Wrap: It was a day in which the most prestigious job in the news business, the anchor chair that once belonged to Walter Cronkite himself, changed hands. But Scott Pelley’s first day as anchor of the “CBS Evening News” barely moved the needle. In fact, it almost seemed lost amid a day of nonstop salacious cable news and internet reporting about Rep. Anthony Weiner coming clean about tweeting lewd pictures.
Comment: It’s hard to have gravitas when the top story of the day involves a member of Congress. But that’s the way it is in 2011.

3.  Jon Stewart’s Weiner problem. What do you do when you host a news-based comedy show and your friend is caught with his pants down? Here’s how Stewart dealt with the problem on The Daily Show. More @ Mediaite.

4. It had to happen sometime. Eliot Spitzer’s CNN show leads with an embarrassing political admission.More @ Mediaite.

5. Origin story of an anti-Semitic superhero.From JTA.org: The main backer of a ballot measure to ban circumcision in Santa Monica has dropped the effort over its perceived attack on religious freedom.
From The Wrap
: But it is the second place that this issue has gotten traction. MGMbill.org, a San Diego based group, has gotten a circumcision ban on the ballot in San Francisco, where it will be voted upon in November.
What’s this all about?
Circumcision has been around for thousands of years. It is common practice in the United States. It is a religious imperative among Jews and Muslims. And in a society where children suffer from all kinds of abuses, it’s not a problem that seems to be crying out for a solution.
On its web-site, MGMbill.org claims to be standing up for human rights.
“Genital mutilation constitutes a major health risk, violates human rights and has lifelong physical and psychological effects,” the notice of intent warns.
But the measure smacks of something else, which smacked a lot louder on Monday as information emerged about a comic drawn by Matthew Hess, the leader of MGMbill.org. The local Lookout news wrote:
“Foreskin Man,” written by Matthew Hess – president of MGMbill.org, the group backing the local anti-circumcision measure – features a blond superman who thwarts “Monster Mohel,” a claw-fingered, hooked-nosed, dark-skinned demoniacal figure who tries to circumcise baby “Glick Sacks.”

From The Blaze (sarcastically): See? No worries! No anti-Semitism here!

IMHO: Yet another example of antisemitism masquerading as a human rights crusade.

6. Glenn Beck announces fee-based online TV network.From The New York Times: On Tuesday, Mr. Beck will announce a first-of-its-kind effort to take a popular — but also fiercely polarizing — television show and turn it into its own subscription enterprise. It is an adaptation of the business models of both HBO and Netflix for one man’s personal brand — and a huge risk, as he and his staff members acknowledged in interviews in recent days. “I think we might be a little early,” Mr. Beck said of his plan for the Internet network, called GBTV, which will cost $5 to $10. “But I’d rather be ahead of the pack than part of it.”
IMHO:
Paying subscription fees to individual channels (rather than to huge cable systems) may be the best way for consumers to take back control over what comes into their homes via their televisions.

7. Talk show host calls on feds to financially starve states whose reps don’t OK a debt ceiling heist. Thom Hartman claims Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner has the power to do so.  And here I thought it was Congress that controlled the purse strings.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=0vZOJTNjLWA

8.  Do journalists understand issues of faith? From Deseret News: It is unclear whether changes in the religious makeup of journalists have taken place over the past 10 years. But there is evidence that coverage of religion may be changing as journalists become more educated about religion and as media organizations realize that a large segment of the population is hungry for stories that include faith.

9. Quote of the Day – “You forget sometimes, I certainly do, that these people are human.” – Jon Stewart on The Daily Show talking about the scandal involving his friend Anthony Weiner (before moving on to the John Edwards story). 

Encourage one another and build each other up – 1 Thessalonians 5:11

 

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