Dentists, Liberty, Meanies, Abortion

A public radio station in Pagosa Springs, Colo., refused to air a local dentist’s underwriting message because it had the word "God" in it, reports the Durango Herald.

The motto of dentist Glenn Rutherford’s practice is: "Gently Restoring the Health God Created." Rutherford said it is not so much a statement of faith as "an acknowledgment that we don’t create health.

"I was called and told that there was a meeting of the [radio’s] staff and they unanimously agreed that I can’t put the word ‘God’ in our sponsorship spot," he said.

KSUT Executive Director Beth Warren declined to comment on specifics of the station’s business relationship with Rutherford. The station’s motto is, "Diverse programming for a multi-cultural world."

Changing Times

Students in Minnesota planning to perform the play Ten Little Indians based on an Agatha Christi novel were forced to change the name because it might offend Native Americans, reports the St. Cloud Times.

Administrators at Technical High School in St. Cloud asked the students to instead use the title of the Christi novel, And Then There Were None, after people involved with American Indian outreach at St. Cloud State University complained. They said the title is based on a children's counting rhyme from the early 1900s that is derogatory.

"We count objects, not people," said Principal Roger Ziemann. "The times have changed since then and we need to be more sensitive. We don't want to give the impression that we're objectifying people."

Ring of Truth?

A new historical center housing and surrounding one of the most enduring symbols of American liberty will dedicate more than half of its exhibit space to slavery and race relations in America, following complaints from African-American activists, reports The Philadelphia Enquirer.

The plans for Independence National Historical Park in Philadelphia were modified last year when activists heard that no mention was going to be made of the slaves owned by George Washington when he lived and worked there.

In breathlessly laudatory tones normally reserved for opinion columns or editorials, the Enquirer tells us, "Gone from Independence Mall will be the story of the Liberty Bell as the embodiment of a universally free and unblemished America. Gone will be the idea that the Founding Fathers were as pure as their most idealistic rhetoric."

But we are assured that it will "remain an inspiring icon of liberty." It’s just that "its symbolism will be enlarged and enriched, becoming a complex web representing freedoms achieved and freedoms denied."

Eenie, Meanie …

Two Southwest Airlines passengers are suing the carrier for racial discrimination because a flight attendant recited a version of a rhyme with a racist history, reports the Kansas City Star.

And a federal judge is actually allowing the case to proceed.

Grace Fuller and her sister Louis Sawyer say they were returning from Las Vegas two years ago when flight attendant Jennifer Cundiff, trying to get passengers to sit down, said over the intercom, "Eenie, meenie, minie, moe; pick a seat, we gotta go."

The sisters say the rhyme was directed at them and was a reference to its racist version that dates to before the civil rights era: "Eenie, meenie, minie, moe; catch a n----- by his toe."

Cundiff said she had never heard the offensive version of the rhyme.

More Meanies

An honor corps at Texas A&M University has been suspended by the school administration for saying mean things to anti-war protestors during a recent protest, reports the Texas Examiner.

Administration officials chastised the Ross Volunteer Honor Corps association for allegedly harassing a group of 30 anti-war protestors carrying signs saying "Bush Is a Baby Killer" during a Feb. 3 protest on campus.

Anti-war activists accused corps members of pointing their non-firing guns at the group and singing, "Some say freedom is free, but we know Aggies who paid the price." The corps' refer to their singing as "jodying," which they use for motivation and rhythm when jogging.

Hugh Stearns, an anti-war protestor who attended the vigil said, "Some of the cadets glared [at us]."

Roused Rebels

Confederate groups in Virginia are irked about plans by the National Park Service to put up a statue of Abraham Lincoln in the heart of the former rebel capital, reports the Scripps Howard News Service.

The groups say that putting a statue of Lincoln on the grounds of the arsenal at Tredegar Iron Works would reopen old wounds and be akin to installing a statue of Usama bin Laden in downtown New York.

"There are no Lincoln statues in the South that I know of, and for good reason," said Brandon "Brag" Bowling, Virginia commander of the Sons of Confederate Veterans.

Shielding the Students

The National Association of Black Journalists is decrying a New York University professor’s intent to use William McGowan’s book about diversity in the news business. They say the book doesn't support the principal of diversity, reports the Washington Square News.

Nat Hentoff put the book, Coloring the News: How Crusading for Diversity has Corrupted American Journalism, on his list of required reading for a graduate level First Amendment course at NYU this fall. Hentoff says the issues it addresses are important to the study of journalism.

But Richard Prince, the head of NABJ’s media monitoring division, said the book has no place in the classroom.

"I think it’s inappropriate as a teaching tool, unless you were going to teach skewed journalism," Prince said. "The problem with the book is that it’s a polemic, and the facts are twisted to fit the argument that [McGowan] is trying to make. And that’s not journalism. It’s not objective."


Officials at Mercy High School in Michigan took a lunch with Gov. Jennifer Granholm off the block of a fund-raising auction because of her pro-abortion stand, reports the Detroit Free Press.

In a memo distributed to parents and students, Sister Regina Marie Doelker, president of the Farmington Hills-based school, said Mercy did not anticipate that a handful of anti-abortion activists would be offended by the governor's offer.

"Out of sensitivity to anyone who might interpret this item as Mercy taking a pro-abortion stand, the luncheon with Gov. Granholm will no longer be an item in Mercy's auction," she wrote.

Can't wait until next Monday for more snippets of politically correct nonsense? Head over to the daily edition of Tongue Tied at the Tongue Tied Web Site.


Sean G. in Tampa, Fla., writes:

You mention that a stained glass window must be covered so as to not offend or convey a bias. I didn't see you mention that one of the most famous and important paintings in the world, Pablo Picasso's "Guernica," had to be covered up at the U.N. Security Council meeting because it would go against the drum beat towards war that Powell was presenting. It isn't just the "left" who is PC (just ask Ashcroft about his cloaked Lady of Justice, which is the most relevant metaphor I've seen in a long time).

Jeff E. in Kirkland, Wash., writes:

There are lots of examples of ridiculous political correctness, many of which appear in this column and reliably outrage the left. However, I wouldn't count among them the story about math teacher Greg Leach being criticized for using his classroom to compare abortion with the Holocaust. This is simply a blatant example of political preaching in the classroom, and the teacher deserves to be reprimanded for taking unfair advantage of his captive audience. The question of whether or not a fertilized egg is a person is entirely one of religion and cannot be answered in a science class, let alone a math class.

Frank J. writes:

Concerning the math teacher who discussed abortion, it is amazing to me how twisted we have become over this issue. He may not talk in a pro-life tone without being required to apologize or be reprimanded. How dare he talk about this in front of "impressionable teenagers"? How dare he, indeed. And how dare the school be allowed to pass out condoms to those same "impressionable teenagers"? And how dare people be allowed to talk to my daughter about an abortion, or perform an abortion on her at whatever age, without a discussion with me, let alone my permission?

What is troubling about the left is that it is okay to discuss and implement their views, but there is no tolerance for even the expression of a view they do not hold. Freedom calls for presenting both sides and letting the person make the decision.

Jef M. in Tacoma, Wash., writes:

I graduated from Wilson H.S. in Tacoma, Wash., in 1987. During my three years my academic counselor told me repeatedly why secular humanism was a wonderful thing and that organized religion was for morons (I was a very outspoken conservative Christian). My lit teacher gave tirades on the greatness of the ACLU. My geometry teacher would spend most of the class mumbling to herself near the chalkboard and my trig teacher would "solve" equations from the text on the chalkboard and stand scratching himself, staring at the answer that didn't match the answer in his book. The administration at Wilson has never worried about the liberal bent of their teachers, and if they actually have a good math teacher, they need to do what they can to keep him.

Deborah D. in College Station, Texas, writes:

I love your column, but I have to say that as an R.N., I understand being upset about the scantly dressed nurses in the beer commercial. Going to a professional job where doctors yell at you, patients grope you, and people believe that adjusting the thermostat is more important than caring for the person with chest pain can be very frustrating to say the least.

I worked very hard to graduate from nursing school, but do not have the respect in my job that most high school students receive in their summer jobs. I did not become a nurse because I could not go to medical school, but because I wanted to be more involved in people's lives when they need it most. Nursing groups are trying to change the perception of the public in nursing. Please support the respect that this group of professionals deserve.

Gus O. writes:

When I read these examples of hyper-sensitive lunacy, I find myself wondering where are the men protesting commercial after commercial, show after show, that portray the American male as weak, stupid and/or evil. I am sick of it. No other segment of our society would tolerate it but we men do. Why?

Bill D. in Los Angeles writes:

Perhaps Burlington County Superior Court Judge John Sweeney may want to have a look at the wall directly behind where members of the U.S. Supreme Court sit. The last time I looked, the Ten Commandments were visible written in English and Hebrew. Perhaps the separation of church and state needs to begin there first.

Chris S. writes:

Just caught your immature column on the Fox website. It appears your arrogance is exceeded only by your ignorance.

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