Bozell's Column

The saddest story in the May 4 New York Times was not the one about the death of John Cardinal O'Connor, who, after all, lived a long, full life serving his God and his Church. Actually, that morning's most depressing articles were in the arts and high-tech sections of the paper. Each offered a disturbing glimpse at what "entertainment" has become for a large segment of today's youth. One article addressed "a new school of hard-edged rock bands." At or near the head of the class is Slipknot, which according to Times critic Neil Strauss specializes in songs "about fenced-in... continue reading
Donna Dees-Thomases has told everyone far and wide that she came up with the idea of the "Million Mom March" after watching TV news coverage of a day-care center shooting in California. She wrote the words down on an envelope. Then she decided to hold the march on Mother's Day. Who would dare criticize that? How emotionally, manipulatively perfect. Her web site proclaims: "Our aim is to recruit - from all walks of life - mothers, grandmothers, stepmothers, godmothers, foster mothers, future mothers, and all others willing to be 'honorary mothers' in this crusade." One honorary mother for this event... continue reading
When school children are taught civics, they learn that there is an executive branch, a legislative branch, and a judicial branch, and one of the legislative branch's checks and balances on the executive is the function of oversight, investigating and demanding answers on executive branch actions. But in today's politics, that's a hopelessly sterile textbook lesson. Under this administration, our fourth branch of government - the media - often discourages and insults the oversight process if the hearing has anything to do with a subject that could potentially damage the President. For our latest installment, and for evidence of the... continue reading
On May 1, Jonathan Last, writing about "The West Wing" in the leftist online magazine Salon, declared that "liberals can do drama well and conservatives can't." I tend to agree. Yet that night, when NBC's four-hour dramatic miniseries "The '70s" wrapped up, millions of viewers were forced to conclude that liberals are also fully capable of producing awful drama. Inevitably, much of "The '70s" deals with the sociopolitical uproar that started in the previous decade. (The tumultuous period we think of as "the '60s" somehow actually began in the fall of 1963 with JFK's assassination and ended in the summer... continue reading
Manhattan prides itself on its eclectic hipness, like its daring fashion styles, its avant-garde theatrical performances, and the like. Now Gotham appears to be at the forefront of a new trend: It's the place to watch your neighbors having sex. My source for this is a New York Times piece which states, "Just look out of any high-rise apartment building in Manhattan. From the businessman in Hell's Kitchen whose neighbors have been treated to nighttime views of him and his bed mates (male and female) to a couple on Fifth Avenue and 16th Street whose lovemaking is a midmorning feature... continue reading
I ran into an old friend recently, a foreign policy expert who has spent much time in recent years in the former Soviet Union and China. "The next administration will be sorely tested," he told me. "Our enemies want to know if our lack of resolve is just Clinton's ineptness or indicative of America's decline." No need to test us. That our government could do what it did to Elian, and that anyone could defend this atrocity tells me our nation has lost its identity. Land of the Free? Not anymore. Never mind our president, who is as cowardly as... continue reading
An eleven-year run is an exceptional accomplishment for a television show. The few that stayed on the air that long, like "Cheers," "M*A*S*H," and "Happy Days," are classics of the industry. But when a certain block of programming, whose total number of series over time reached well into double figures, lasts eleven years, it's an even greater accomplishment. It's akin to maintaining a championship-level sports franchise amidst ongoing personnel turnover, as when Washington Redskins coach Joe Gibbs won three Super Bowls with three different quarterbacks. Sadly, this programming block - ABC's Friday, family-oriented "TGIF" (Thank God It's Friday) lineup, which... continue reading
The organizers of Earth Day 2000 cast movie star and "Titanic" teen-titillator Leonardo DiCaprio in the lead role of their Washington protest. Consider the movie poster: "First he saved Kate Winslet. Now he's saving the planet." Just don't think they're thrilled with their casting. Crusty radical Earth Day boss Denis Hayes admitted to the Boston Globe, "Sure, it'd be preferable if policy issues could be discussed on a higher plane, but we live where we live.'" It doesn't help that DiCaprio has done his part in this year's main Earth Day theme - shadowboxing against the phantom of "global warming"... continue reading
Liberals love protests, taking to the streets and demanding "social change." They're flocking to protests against free world trade, the use of fossil fuels, homophobia, and gun rights, to name a few lovable liberal stances. But when the protests don't match that "progressive" agenda, the reception isn't so rosy. The daily protest vigil of Cuban Americans around Elian Gonzalez's adopted home is a good example. Time Miami correspondent Tim Padgett recently began an article by disparaging the "hard-line" anti-communists surrounding the six-year-old survivor. "The 'banana republic' label sticking to Miami in the final throes of the Elian Gonzalez crisis is... continue reading
Submitted for your consideration, this snippet from a Boston Globe story: "The... deploring of language, nudity and those 'sexual situations' on the...networks [is] being heard again." That line was written in 1989, back when shows like "Married...With Children," which featured the dysfunctional, crass Bundy family, were the rage. Back in 1989 many were deploring the violence on "Wiseguy," the sexual innuendo on "Anything But Love," the raw language on "Roseanne." So often it was so gratuitous, so unnecessary - meant only to titillate some, and (presumably) offend others. It was a pretty sorry state of affairs. Ten years later we... continue reading