The NBC television network is reportedly refusing to air ads promoting Shut Up and Sing, a new documentary about censorship of the Dixie Chicks. NBC has reportedly said it will not accept the ads because they are “disparaging to President Bush.”
Ralph G. Neas, president of the nonpartisan People For the American Way, which advocates free speech, strongly criticized the reported NBC decision. “If these reports are true, it would be astonishing for NBC to censor criticism of President Bush less than two weeks before the election,” Neas said. “This is a film about censorship, and now it sounds as though it’s being censored.”
“This apparent NBC decision insults Americans’ intelligence,” said PFAW New York Director Andrew Stengel, a former vice president at Miramax Films. “Why doesn’t NBC think viewers deserve to hear differing views?” he asked.
Neas plans to call on People For the American Way’s more than 900,000 members and activists to contact NBC and ask the network to reverse its decision. People For the American Way is also considering pursuing legal action challenging the decision.
People For the American Way Foundation recently co-sponsored Shut Up and Sing’s New York premiere.