With the trial of Dr. George Tiller’s murderer underway, CBS is planning on airing an anti-abortion advertisement to a massive audience tuning in to watch the Super Bowl on February 5. Besides being both unwise and potentially dangerous as the lives of many family planning doctors and staff are threatened every day by religious zealots, this is a bizarre advertising choice during the Super Bowl, the most-watched game of the year, and reveals the influence of the radical religious right on our corporate-owned media. One has to wonder how much money the fundamentalist churches and televangelists contributed to this ad–isn’t it time that they have their tax-exempt status yanked? They can’t have it both ways; they can’t be both non-profit entities and political organizations. We need to get religion out of politics by enforcing the IRS laws so they wouldn’t be able to funnel the outrageous amounts of donations they collect towards their political agenda. Likewise, CBS should make better choices and restrict their ads to products instead of pandering to political pressure by the religious right.
Barack Obama is very good at saying what we progressives want to hear but makes promises on which he either won’t or can’t deliver. Talk is cheap–he needs to walk the walk and at this point his failure to take on the right wing or show any leadership has made me very cynical about his intentions or ability to do what needs to be done. I now think he is just another average politico protecting the home turf, though I never did view him as the Messianic leader many did. It turns out there’s not much reason to hope for change from this administration, all campaign promises to the contrary, and his reticence to rock the boat shines the spotlight on how changing leaders does not change the fundamental systemic problems. How much longer are we going to hope that the Democratic Party is going to do anything? We need independent and third-party progressives in office because the members of the two major parties are too invested in the status quo.