T Nation

Christians Issue SpongeBob Warning

Christians issue gay warning on SpongeBob

Thursday January 20, 2005

From CNN.com:

LOS ANGELES, California (Reuters) – Conservative Christian groups
accuse the makers of a video starring SpongeBob SquarePants, Barney and a
host of other cartoon characters of promoting homosexuality to children.

The wacky square yellow SpongeBob is one of the stars of a music video
due to be sent to 61,000 U.S. schools in March. The makers – the
nonprofit We Are Family Foundation – say the video is designed to encourage
tolerance and diversity.

But at least two Christian activist groups say the innocent cartoon
characters are being exploited to promote the acceptance of homosexuality.

“A short step beneath the surface reveals that one of the differences
being celebrated is homosexuality,” wrote Ed Vitagliano in an article
for the American Family Association.

The video is a remake of the 1979 hit song “We Are Family” using the
voices and images of SpongeBob, Barney, Winnie the Pooh, Bob the Builder,
the Rugrats and other TV cartoon characters. It was made by a
foundation set up by songwriter Nile Rodgers after the terrorist attacks of
September 11, 2001, in an effort to promote healing.

Christian groups however have taken exception to the tolerance pledge
on the foundation’s Web site, which asks people to respect the sexual
identity of others along with their abilities, beliefs, culture and race.

“Their inclusion of the reference to 'sexual identity” within their
‘tolerance pledge’ is not only unnecessary, but it crosses a moral line,"
James Dobson, founder of Focus on the Family, said in a statement
released Thursday.

Rodgers said he was astounded by the attack.

“That is so myopic and harsh,” he told Reuters. “You have really got to
look hard to find anything in this that is offensive to anyone. The
last thing I am going to do is taint these characters.”

Dobson was quoted by the New York Times on Thursday as having singled
out the wildly popular SpongeBob during remarks about the video at
dinner this week in Washington, D.C.

SpongeBob, who lives in a pineapple under the sea, was “outed” by the
U.S. media in 2002 after reports that the TV show and its merchandise
are popular with gays. His creator, Stephen Hillenburg, said at the time
that though SpongeBob was an oddball, he thought of all the characters
in the show as asexual.

It is not the first time that children’s TV favorites have come under
the critical spotlight of the Christian right. In 1999, the Rev. Jerry
Falwell described Tinky Winky, the purse-toting purple Teletubbie, as a
gay role model.

Ahhh…

The sweet, pungent aroma of homophobia. I love it: “If you let your kids watch SpongeBob, they’ll turn gay.”

Man, there are just all kinds of people in this world, aren’t there?

HAHA!! I knew something was wrong with that retarded sponge…always hanging out with that pink starfish, and who knows where that snail has been! I seriously have to wonder about anyone who watches that cartoon and immediately starts thinking about sex. Maybe “SpongeBob Hetero-Pants”? That way no one is confused. Gasp What if that squirrel is a lesbian?!!

Wait till they see the video where Bob gets sodomized by the big blue Tele-Tubby!

[quote]Professor X wrote:
HAHA!! I knew something was wrong with that retarded sponge…always hanging out with that pink starfish, and who knows where that snail has been! I seriously have to wonder about anyone who watches that cartoon and immediately starts thinking about sex. Maybe “SpongeBob Hetero-Pants”? That way no one is confused. Gasp What if that squirrel is a lesbian?!![/quote]

Wow. You just named almost every character on the show. You surprise me, you big kid!

I guess this gives them an excuse to not worry about things that really matter.

Of course Spongebob is asexual - it’s a freakin kids cartoon. One of the funniest cartoons I ever watched. Shit like this is what makes people hate the religous.

I don’t know why they’re stretching to out spongebob when all they need to do is watch like 10 seconds of the “Wiggles” to find all the overt homosexuals they want.

[quote]malonetd wrote:
Wow. You just named almost every character on the show. You surprise me, you big kid!
[/quote]

That show is funny to me for some reason. I don’t sit and watch much tv but I have caught that a few times. Somebody was high on something when they created those characters.

I think this is ridiculous.

One thing I will note - the title of the thread is not accurate. It’s not Christians, but advocacy groups that are Christian.

Kind of like saying Muslims want to wage war on the West - no, it’s a section of Muslims, but not all.

Most Christians, I suspect, think this a pile of horseshit as much as the others do.

http://images.t-nation.com/forum_images/./1/.1106322138297.Sandy.jpg

But everybody is missing the most important detail about Spongebob cartoons.

Sandy is hot. :^P

SpongeBob is educational too though. I mean he works for Mr. Krab at the “Krusty Krab.” Everyone knows how relentless and irritating Mr. Krab is. Hopefully kids are getting the message that crabs are bad and should be avoided. And once they realize that crabs are bad, perhaps they’ll make the connection that all STD’s are bad.

Thats good advice.

sigh

Just when you think the only backwards hillbilly people you know are all in your family, something like this comes along!

I have to agree with what Thunderbolt said. Along the same lines, the “Christian” groups who get their knickers in a twist about this stuff have lost focus on what their faith is really about, and it wouldn’t be fixing the rest of the world. I am a Christian, and fail to see the relevance of getting in a snit about a harmless cartoon. Most of us really could care less about Spongebob, Tinkly-winkly, squirrels or whatever other thing is out there now.

Oh, and by the way, China, you really are a doll!
Stay strong,
Dan

What a relief, reading everyone’s input. You guys are so right on!

Just goes to show you that even if you live in a pineapple under the sea, even IF you wear square pants, EVEN IF you are a FICTITIOUS CHARACTER, you are still not safe from radical crazies trying to nose their way into your bedroom. Can you picture two homosexual sponges in the act? The dirtiest I can picture is wiping the kitchen counter down with the SpongeMan…

[quote]haney wrote:
sigh

Just when you think the only backwards hillbilly people you know are all in your family…[/quote]

I thought I was the only one that thought this.

I know I’m going to get crucified for this, but everyone seems to be missing the point that the SpongeBob cartoon is not itself the object of the criticism. It is the video produced by the We Are Family organization that FEATURES SpongeBob (and other characters) that is in question. We Are Family is an organization that “works to spread the truth about homosexuality” (whatever that is). It was formed after 9/11. The connection between 9/11 and homosexuality escapes me, but this is beside the point. Further, the government schools, where we will find the target audience for the video, are notorious for “promoting homosexuality.” Therefore, it does not seem unreasonable to conclude that the charges may indeed have some merit. OK, you may kill me now.

I think we ought to do something about the fundamentalists in our own countries before we go overseas.

These “conservative christians” are a great example of people trying to “impose” their beliefs on others.

Yes, yes, they have no actual authority, thank whatever the hell it is you thank, or they would exercise that authority without hesitation.

Without authority they will lobby those with authority and do whatever they can, hopefully nothing, to pressure the creators of this material.

While they may be, hopefully, ineffective, I can imagine they will attempt to have stations stop showing the material and possibly attempt to have stores stop carrying Spongebob paraphenalia.

It’s a perfect example of why so many people are terrified of letting government or other authoritative bodies be innundated with the beliefs of any religion. Can you imagine what these dolts would do if one of their own was in power?

The interesting thing is to start to consider other religious viewpoints, which aren’t so stupid, and see where in the government the battle is being waged.

What about gay marriages? That is a religious issue that is not so far out of the mainstream!

What about sex education? Is this a religious issue? This issue is in play right now as well.

What about contraceptives? Well, this issue is in play too.

What about abortions? Wow, another issue that is in play. Yikes.

They, the religiously guided, often go to great lengths to remove these issues from the domain of “religion” so that they can attempt to impose their beliefs. Those aren’t religious issues, they are moral issues! How many times have you heard that? Well, for those that claim religion is the ultimate decider of right and wrong, morality is a religious issue!

I’m not trying to derail this thread into a discussion of these other issues! Please don’t go that way, we have other threads for those issues. However, I’m trying to point out that while we all agree that Spongebob is a non-issue, we won’t all agree on whether or not these other issues are non-issues.

The question is, should those with strong religious or moral beliefs on these other issues be allowed to use whatever mains are available to get others to respect those beliefs?

If so, then the people opposed to Spongebob are merely doing exactly the same thing. They are acting on their strongly held beliefs and using whatever means are at their disposal to get the rest of us to understand and adhere to those beliefs (or morals).

In a land that respects freedom of religion and associated concepts of right and wrong, how do you ever choose which set of religious beliefs and derivative morals to impose on the citizenry?

Majority rule? Existing custom and tradition? Howabout actually respecting the rights of others to actually choose their own religion and hence allowed behaviors? Wow, that might mean they are allowed to do things you hate… and vice-versa.

Maybe if we could simply focus on ourselves, and stop trying to make others fit into our own rules, things would be much smoother?

How come we are all so motivated to make others believe what we believe?

How come we have to get involved in and change what other people are doing?

Why are we all such busybodies in this day and age?

Wait - I forgot to consider that the character wears square pants - can I change my answer?

:>

Chinadoll,

“…you are still not safe from radical crazies trying to nose their way into your bedroom…”

You are not safe from radical crazies regardless of what you do. That is why they are radical and crazy.

[quote]rainjack wrote:
haney wrote:
sigh

Just when you think the only backwards hillbilly people you know are all in your family…

I thought I was the only one that thought this.
[/quote]

RJ,

You don’t know the half of it!!!