In the latest edition of the pamphlet YOU'VE GOT A RIGHT TO ROCK put out by our friends at ROCK & ROLL CONFIDENTIAL, we read how MTV NEWS was attacked by the right-wing for presenting what they called "liberal bias." We also read about MTV newsman Kurt Loder being attacked in the right wing newsletter TV, ETC. Attempts to pull the Music Networks plug have been made in South Carolina, Massachusetts and other areas. Why even here in Ohio the Mayor of Girard tried (unsuccessfully) last year to have MTV banned from "his town." But last month we saw the largest attempt yet to have MTV banned.
Beginning July 1st, TCA Cable System based in Tyler, Texas announced that it was dropping MTV from 53 of its affiliate systems in a seven state area. This would have made MTV unavailable for an estimated 420,000 viewers in Texas, Arkansas, Louisiana, Missouri, Mississippi, Idaho and New Mexico.
The announcement came on June 25 as TCA executive Randy Ellisor said "As a corporate citizen, we don't feel we can continue to offer borderline pornographic materials." This was echoed by TCA Chairman Robert Rogers who added. "We've had so many complaints from teachers' groups, the city council, parents' groups, that we realized it not suitable for a general audience."
Now the cable company has done an about face and is in the process of putting MTV back on a number of its systems. Why the complete turn around? It's simply because fans of MTV took to the streets and raised hell. In Amarillo, Conroe and at Texas A&M University mass demonstrations against TCA were held. Radio stations in Texas were helping spread the word by polling their audiences and one station, Z-93, KQIZ in Amarillo even did a protest song to the tune of E.M.F.'s hit "It's Unbelievable." Their version was titled, "It's Unavailable."
This is what can be done when people unite to fight a common enemy. This is the same type of unity we need to defeat the PMRC, the AFA, Focus On The Family and the host of other pro-censorship groups out there. Here we see an example of a company making a rash decision based on the complaints of a few nutty groups. And we see how the will of the people and the might of rock fans can force them to backpeddle. My what strength we have, let's keep the pressure on all of the censors.