Thursday, June 03, 2004

Reaping what you sow

Left liberal Phillip Adams has written a column deploring the decline in moral standards on TV. He writes that "You don't need me to remind you of the continuing downward spiral that, passing through the sewers, has long since broken through the bottom of the barrel." He describes TV as a "charnel house", criticises Jerry Springer as a "bottom feeder" and suggests that network executives need a reminder of sins being punished and virtues rewarded.

The problem with this complaint about low moral standards on TV? Phillip Adams is Australia's most famous campaigner against censorship in film and TV. And he has declared his belief that "almost everything we like doing ... is naughty"; that "I'm unconcerned by what people do to themselves or others sexually"; that "morals are simply expedients"; and that his lack of moral or religious belief gives him a pleasant "sense of recklessness."

But, if a society can't defend itself either by asserting a positive moral culture, or else by protecting a community standard through censorship, then how did Phillip Adams believe that TV standards would be maintained? It's as if he can't make the obvious connection that by undermining the concept of morality itself, and by making any kind of moral censorship illegitimate, you are going to have a gradual decline in moral standards.

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