The Broadcasting Standards Authority (BSA), in releasing its decision on the South Park “Bl***y Mary” episode, has proved that it is unable to represent the community as a whole, and is more interested in the rights of a few to offend.
“You would find it almost impossible to find anybody, and especially any woman, who believes that the imagery of a woman spraying menstrual blood in the face of another person (satirical or not) is decent or in good taste,” says Bob McCoskrie, National Director of the Family First Lobby.
“And the BSA is totally wrong to hide behind the NZ Bill of Rights,” says Mr McCoskrie. “The Bill of Rights acknowledges that the Courts need to balance individual rights against the rights of others and the interests of the whole community. Satire is not a licence for broadcasting highly offensive material to sectors of the community including women and a number of religious groups.”
“The BSA is out of touch with the values of the large majority of NZ families.”
“Families are sick and tired of being confronted with gratuitous violence, overt sexual content, foul language, and having to grab for the remote to change the channel every time a graphic promotion for an “Adults Only” programme comes on?”
Joanne Morris, the chair of the BSA said earlier this year ‘We’ve been measuring public attitudes and their shifts since 1993, and built up a pretty clear picture of what NZ’ers are thinking.’
The BSA believes it is reflecting community standards. The Family First Lobby believes that they are setting the standards – or more correctly, not setting them. No longer can families depend on the BSA to reflect community values.
This decision has confirmed that families in NZ have much to fear with decisions made by the BSA.