DeDurkheim at Rising Hegemon already posted an item on this story and it probably does not merit much more attention. But when I first read about this topic I really wanted to do a post, so why should I let the fact that Attaturk (and his gang of bloggers with funny furrin names) tends to blog at one in the AM hold me back?
So. Reminiscent of Jerry Falwell’s stout defense of our nation from the evil designs of Tinky Winky (“He is purple — the gay-pride color; and his antenna is shaped like a triangle — the gay-pride symbol.”), presidential advisor and Radical Cleric James Dobson is protecting us from another evil homosexual plot.
“Does anybody here know SpongeBob?” James Dobson, founder of Focus on the Family, asked the guests Tuesday night at a black-tie dinner for members of Congress and political allies to celebrate the election results.
Now, Dobson said, SpongeBob’s creators had enlisted him in a “pro-homosexual video,” in which he appeared alongside other children’s television characters such as Barney and Jimmy Neutron, among many others. The video’s makers, he said, planned to mail it to thousands of elementary schools this spring to promote a “tolerance pledge” that includes tolerance for differences of “sexual identity.” He urged his allies to stand against it as part of a “spiritual battle” for the country.
The video’s creator, Nile Rodgers, who wrote the disco hit “We Are Family,” says Dobson’s objection stemmed from a misunderstanding. Rodgers said he founded the We Are Family Foundation after the Sept. 11 attacks to create a music video featuring 100 well-known cartoon characters dancing to his song in order to teach children about multiculturalism.
The video has appeared on Nickelodeon and other networks, and nothing in it or its accompanying materials refers to sexual identity. The “tolerance pledge,” which was borrowed from the Southern Poverty Law Center, is not mentioned on the video.
Rodgers suggested that Dobson and the American Family Association, the conservative Christian group that first sounded the alarm, might have been confused by an unrelated Web site belonging to another group called “We Are Family.” That site is owned by a Charleston, S.C., group that supports gay youth.
Mark Barondeso, general counsel for the We Are Family Foundation, suggested that anyone who says the video promotes homosexuality “needs to visit their doctor and get their medication increased.”
Yesterday however, Paul Batura, assistant to Dobson, said Focus on the Family stood by its assertions. “We see the video as an insidious means by which the organization is manipulating and potentially brainwashing kids,” he said.