Tuesday, May 08, 2007
Iran requires all TV dramas to feature prayers
(C'mon kids, let's chant 'Death to America' in the TV room!)
Here in the USA, we toss around the word "censorship" casually, but it's wise to remember that in other parts of the world -- and even place that don't seem to be part of this world, like Iran -- censorship is prevalent and renders daily life far different than we Americans enjoy.
The head of Iran's state-run TV has declared that, henceforth, all TV dramas must contain prayers. (Just switch the channel, you say? Sorry. Satellite TV is banned in Iran, too.)
“In the current year, television productions that do not have prayer scenes will not be allowed to air,” said Ezatollah Zarghami.
Imagine your American living room and your flickering electronic hearth. The only programs you can see are programs that the government wants you to see. No criticism of the Administration. No messages counter to the government's official policies. No exposure of corruption or avarice among your leaders. It sounds like the premise for a sci-fi fantasy, but it's real in places like Iran. (Iran isn't alone in such radical despotism.)
What Iran needs is Sesame Street ... but then again, Miss Piggy probably wouldn't be very popular with Muslims.
(On the other hand, in Iran they don't have "Flavor of Love," so that's a plus.)