Dr. Ted Baehr is the founder and publisher of MOVIEGUIDE, chairman of the Christian Film & Television Commission, and a well-known movie critic, educator, lecturer and media pundit. He also is the author of several books, including "The Culture-Wise Family" with legendary entertainer Pat Boone. For more information, please call 800-899-6684 or go to the MOVIEGUIDE website.More ↓Less ↑
The mass media create the culture that elects the politicians and legislators who write your laws. The politicians and legislators appoint the bureaucrats and judges who execute and interpret those laws. They also hire the government teachers and public school administrators who most likely educate your children.
What if the mass media create a culture that is so dumbed-down and polluted with explicit sex, graphic violence, obscene language and perversity that many Americans have lost all sense and sensibility?
That’s the situation the United States may be facing, according to a recent Zogby poll. The poll showed that 74 percent of Americans can name the Three Stooges, but only 42 percent can name the three branches of our government – the legislative branch, the executive branch and the judicial branch. The poll also showed that 60 percent can name Bart as Homer’s son on the TV show “The Simpsons,” but less than 21 percent can name one of the Greek poet Homer’s epic poems, “The Iliad” or “The Odyssey.” Finally, the poll showed that about 75 percent of Americans know the names of at least two of the Seven Dwarves, but only 25 percent can name two of the nine Supreme Court justices.
This poll not only demonstrates the poor level of intellectual sophistication and competence in our failed, government public schools; it also demonstrates the negative impact of our dumbed-down mass media in Hollywood and New York, including the American music industry and our national “news” organizations. The people who run our mass media and the people who run our schools seem to be more interested in power, making money or serving a radical political and secular agenda, than they are in producing an informed, intelligent electorate.
Of course, the mass media and our public schools and college campuses are filled with leaders who claim to be very smart, educated individuals.
How many of them, however, have heard of, much less read, Russell Kirk, the founder of the modern conservative movement? And, how many of them can name at least half of the Ten Commandments or describe the Apostle Paul’s doctrine of justification by faith in the books of Romans and Galatians in the New Testament documents?
If you don’t know basic facts like these, then how can you claim that your rejection of the God of the Bible and the Gospel of Jesus Christ is an informed decision, rather than a subjective, ill-informed feeling devoid of factual evidence and logic?
Proverbs 19:2 states, “Zeal without knowledge is not good.” Likewise, in Hosea 4:9, God says, “Without knowledge, my people will perish.”
Thus, America will self-destruct unless it can eliminate and transform, or redeem, the pagan, anti-intellectual values of their dumbed-down culture with biblical principles, the Gospel of Jesus Christ, and the knowledge and wisdom that they bring. For example, the next time you here someone pontificate about the “separation of church and state” in the Bill of Rights of the United States Constitution, remind that person that those words are not really in the Bill of Rights.
This is not a job for Superman, or even Spider-Man. And it certainly isn’t a job for Bart or Homer Simpson. It’s a job for each and every one of us!
Teach yourself and the rest of your family, therefore, about the impact of the mass media on your culture, including your political leaders and the teachers who educate you and your children. Study vociferously the profound truths the Bible and the Gospel of Jesus Christ offer. Become fully informed about the great political, cultural and biblical values and traditions that form the basis of our Western Civilization and the basis of the republic for which the flag of the United States of America stands. Finally, become informed thinkers so that you can ignore and forsake the superficial, harmful aspects of the mass media and exchange it for the sublime beauty of our cultural history and traditions.
If you’re looking for a good place to start, read “Media-wise Family” and subscribe to the magazine we founded at the Christian Film & Television Commission ministry, called Movieguide. You can reach us by calling 1-800-577-6684 or visiting us online.
Wise up, America. You have nothing to lose but your minds.