Monday, June 20, 2011

The sadly obligatory NBC omits "under God" from the Pledge post

Here's the full advert that was run during the U.S. Open yesterday.

And here's NBC's explanation for what happened:

NBC issued an on-air apology Sunday for omitting the words "under God" from the Pledge of Allegiance during its coverage of golf's U.S. Open.

The words were edited out of a clip of children reciting the oath -- a move immediately noted by viewers, who took to Twitter and various blogs to voice their anger, the Huffington Post reported.

In a statement during the broadcast, NBC commentator Dan Hicks said, "We began our coverage of this final round just about three hours ago and when we did it was our intent to begin the coverage of this U.S. Open Championship with a feature that captured the patriotism of our national championship being held in our nation's capital for the third time.

"Regrettably, a portion of the Pledge of Allegiance that was in that feature was edited out. It was not done to upset anyone and we'd like to apologize to those of you who were offended by it."

Ah yes, the old "we're sorry if our 'editing' cheezed off anyone" defense.

How out of touch are these people that they thought this would be a good idea? For a modest fee, we would sit in on production meetings and earn more than our keep by warning off the suits from idiotic ideas like this.

The (il)logic that was employed seems to be along the lines of not wanting to offend the sensibilities of a few cranks in exchange for offending the sensibilities of a far, far greater number of people plus insulting the intelligence of everybody by thinking we all wouldn't notice and we wouldn't care. That's apparently what passed for a reasonable approach on how to handle that politically-explosive and divisive hot potato, The Pledge of Allegiance.

Memo to the brain surgeons at NBC: Next time you are considering how to finesse your way around what you believe to be culturally and politically-sensitive matters like, you know, the Pledge of Allegiance, either recite the thing in its entirety, or don't recite it at all.

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