Kathleen Gilbert

News

Fox petitions Supreme Court to strike down TV decency regs as ‘too vague’

Kathleen Gilbert

WASHINGTON, D.C., September 21, 2011 (LifeSiteNews.com) - A group of broadcast networks led by Fox is challenging the constitutionality of the federal government’s decency standards for television broadcast, including the use of expletives and nudity.

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) will be defending its decency standards before the U.S. Supreme Court after the Second Circuit, in a July 2010 case involving the use of expletives in two Fox TV awards shows, ruled that the standards were too vague.

The same court upheld the ruling in a separate case in January, striking down the FCC’s fine against a group of ABC stations that broadcast an actress’ nudity in an episode of NYPD Blue in 2003.

Broadcasters will argue that the current standards violate their First Amendment rights.

“Prime-time television has already degraded. Removing the current decency standards would allow prime-time TV to slide into a cinematic cesspool,” said Liberty Counsel founder Mathew D. Staver, whose group filed an amicus brief defending the standards last week.

The Liberty Counsel brief was filed on behalf of Judith A. Reisman, Ph.D., an internationally recognized expert in media forensics and the effects of the work of “sexologist” Dr. Alfred Kinsey on society and the family.

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