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Thought the Super Bowl Half-Time Show Breast-Baring Stunt was Bad? Wait Till You See What Delta Airlines has in Store for Kids

Contact: Robert Peters, Morality in Media, 212-870-3210


NEW YORK, May 24 /Standard Newswire/ -- On May 17, Morality in Media received a call from a citizen in Atlanta who reported that Delta Airlines had aired HBO's "Rome," with scenes of nudity and simulated sex, on overhead TV screens in the aisle. When he complained, he was told the program should have been available only on "private" screens. When he objected to showing "Rome" on "private" screens, he was told the airlines would be editing sexually explicit scenes to three seconds or less and that passengers who objected to content on "private" screens would be reseated.


Robert Peters, President of Morality in Media, had the following comments:


"When I fly, I often find myself watching programming that is exhibited on a screen controlled by a passenger seated adjacent to me or in a row ahead of me. These screens, like laptop computer or cell phone screens, are 'private' only in the sense that each passenger controls the programming.


"While it is understandable that commercial airlines want to maximize each passenger's choice when it comes to viewing programming on 'private' screens, it should also be understood that other passengers sitting nearby are, for all practical purposes, a captive audience.


"Once the flight is underway, and especially when a flight is full, passengers can't just get up and go to another seat. Flight attendants must first find another passenger who wouldn't mind getting an eyeful of explicit sex on a nearby screen. If a parent and child want to move, attendants must find two passengers seated next to each other that are willing to move.


"And what if a parent is asleep or engrossed in a book when the sex heats up? What if a parent can't see the sexually explicit programming because his or her view is blocked?


"Reportedly, Delta Airlines' solution to this dilemma is to edit nudity or explicit sex to three seconds or less. To put that in perspective Janet Jackson's breast was exposed for only 19/32 of a second on CBS TV during the 2004 Super Bowl halftime show.


"According to Dr. Judith Reisman, '"in 3/10 of a second a visual image passes from the eye through the brain, and whether or not one wants to, the brain is structurally changed and memories are created – we literally 'grow new brain' with each new visual experience."' ["Hearing on the Brain Science of Pornography Addiction," U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation, Subcommittee on Science, Technology and Space, 11/8/04]


"Or, take a watch with a second hand, count along (one, two, three), and then ask yourself, 'What parent would permit a child to (repeatedly) view explicit sex for two or three seconds?'


"In case someone thinks the caller overreacted, here are descriptions of content on HBO's 'Rome.'


"'In "Rome," HBO really lays it on thick. Every few minutes, somebody is gutted with a sword, nailed to a crucifix, tortured, whipped or otherwise beaten...As for sex, the Rome of "Rome" is a veritable fornication nation. Wenches are plucked off the streets or fields by marauding soldiers, who rape and discard them. A noblewoman...beds everyone in sight.' [N.Y. Post, 8/24/05]


"'But in the hands of devilishly vulgar and explicit HBO, this Rome is especially in bloody, vicious and wicked. With this much stabbing, throat slitting and sexual debauchery, it's a city only the stoutest of heart should visit...HBO...shows us a "Rome" that is sadistic and obscene, with plenty of sword gougings and full-frontal nudity.' [Salt Lake City Tribune, 8/26/05]


"'The egregious sex (heightened in the next few weeks...) and the zeal for bloody, sharp-knifed close combat, should remind everyone that this is HBO...Rome is full of ...bloody fights and provocative sexual encounters (If you thought the May-December lesbian tryst...was different, wait two weeks for something far more boundary pushing).' [San Francisco Chronicle, 10/14/05]


"'I'm not sure why "Rome" has become somewhat less full of naked women and rapes in fields...It is still far too be shown in classrooms...' [Chicago Sun Times, 1/11/07]


"'Rome'...has pioneered a new category: HBO Trash. The series may be HBO's most visually spectacular outing...but "Rome" has the...soul of a hard-R-rated soap.' [Boston Globe, 1/13/07]


"'Rome' is visually intoxicating...Abject cruelty and hedonism has rarely looked so sumptuous...It's an endless flood of beatings, buggerings, exploitation of young male prostitutes, grubby men refusing to rise from their bed until they've been satisfied (and it doesn't matter by who) and lasciviously rendered torture scenes.' [Daily News of Los Angeles, 1/14/07]