ABC Bleeps “Jesus” From The Delayed Broadcast of a TV ShowTruth!

Summary of eRumor:

It is alleged that ABC edited out the use of the name “Jesus” in a release of the morning talk show THE VIEW.  

The eRumor says that Joy Behar, one of the hosts of the show issued a heart-felt “Thank you Jesus” for the success of her weight-loss campaign.  

Her reference to Jesus was broadcast during the live show, but on the delayed West Coast release of the program, it was allegedly blocked.


The Truth:

The eRumor circulated in several forms.  

One of them (below) is a letter from the Rev. Jerry Falwell.  Another is a article based on a report from the Media Research Center.  

The story is true.  

It happened to the May 23, 2002 broadcast of THE VIEW, which is also hosted by Meredith Vieira, Star Jones, and Lisa Ling.

The protest against ABC is by Christians who interpreted the incident as being anti-religious or anti-Christian.  ABC told CNN, however, that the name of Jesus came up in a humorous way and that the decision to bleep it was not meant to be one of disrespect to Jesus or to Christians but to be sensitive to those who might have been offended with the humorous us of it.  ABC said that the name Jesus can be used in a respectful way, but the network prohibits it from being used in exclamations.

The eRumor gives the impression that Joy Behar’s comment was one of saying thanks to Jesus for her weight loss, but the script shows that it was more flippant than that.  Behar had been dieting and keeping track of her progress on the air.  During the May 23 program, Meredith Vieira made a comment about the fact that Behar’s ordeal of daily weigh-ins was now ended.  Behar’s joyful acknowledgement appears to over the end of the diet. viewed a video of the original broadcast.  Here is the transcript:

Meredith Vieira: “So yesterday, yesterday if you saw this show, you know it was the last day of the weigh-in, the scale is gone.”

Joy Behar: “Yes, and thank you, thank you, Jesus, is all I have to say! Goodbye to that damn scale and this whole diet. I’m sick of it!”

The comment comes across as humorous gratitude for the end of the diet.

The Falwell letter asks what would have happened if the name of Jesus had been used in vain instead of praise.  Would it have been taken out?  ABC says that’s what happened…a use of the name of Jesus in a way other than praise and that’s why it was taken out.

Critics, however, say it is “political correctness run amok.”  Baher herself objected to the comment being taken out.

The truth is probably somewhere in the middle.  It was not a heart-felt expression of praise to Jesus but was probably not meant to be disrespectful either.

Baher describes herself as an “Italian Catholic.”

A real example of the eRumor as it has appeared on the Internet:

Date: June 19, 2002
From: Jerry Falwell

I need for you to take two very important steps today.

But first, let me remind you of what has happened.

On May 23 ABC aired a taped broadcast of the talk show “The View.” On this program co-host Joy Behar expressed her heart-felt feelings over a successful diet by exclaiming, “Thank you, Jesus!”

However, while the program aired “live” on the East Coast, ABC actually bleeped out the name of Jesus — as if it were profanity — for the taped West Coast version.

The Media Research Center has called this “political correctness run amok.” I agree.

It appears that the national TV networks want to erase the name of Jesus from the public airwaves. You and I CAN and MUST prevent this from happening before it’s too late!

Now, here’s what I need you to do:

1) Click the link below to sign the special “online” petition I have prepared to be delivered to the heads of the ABC television network. This petition says you are outraged over ABC’s decision to censor the name of Jesus while continuing to regularly broadcast immorality, violence and coarse, gutter language on network programs.

2) Forward this message to every friend, family member, church member or business associate in your e-mail address book … and do so right now! Urge them to add their name to this petition, as you have done and forward this message to each of their friends.

The only way to get the attention of the networks is to create a massive groundswell of outrage that cannot be ignored. My goal is to generate one million or more of these petitions to send to the network executives at ABC.

I believe ABC’s decision is nothing more than bigotry toward Christianity. This should make every Christian in America sit up, take notice and take immediate action!

Once we start down the slippery slope of censoring references to Jesus, it may only be a matter of time before the networks and their affiliate stations refuse to even allow religious programs on the air for fear they may “offend” someone.

I have to wonder if a guest on the program had used the Lord’s name in vain instead of in praise, would it still have been censored?

The truth is the TV networks routinely air obscenity and vulgar language without ever censoring one word.

NBC’s popular “ER” program recently aired expletives rarely allowed on TV, as did CBS on a TV special in March.

Many cable networks have adopted policies in which the name of Jesus is routinely blasphemed without a thought.

Tune in to Howard Stern’s broadcast on the E Network one evening and you’ll hear the Lord’s name uttered in vain countless times.

I say it’s time to say “Enough is enough.” I need you to help me reach one million Christians who will join me today by adding their name to this petition. Click on the link below to add your name, then forward this e-mail to your friends asking them to join you.

Why should the networks expunge the name of Jesus as if it were a curse word too horrible for ladies and children to hear – while at the same time spewing sick, sinful poison into the living rooms of America and onto your children and grandchildren?

I want to generate one million or more petitions from across the country to the president and chairman of the board of ABC.

We must let them know that we will not stand by while they squelch the name of Jesus while they bombard children and families with filth at the same time.

It’s time to show the networks that the majority of Americans are not at all like Hollywood executives. The name of Jesus is to be revered, not blasphemed.

Please sign your online petition now and forward it to everyone in your e-mail address book immediately.

I am launching this national campaign to clean up the TV airwaves through my many ministry outreaches, including Internet, television, radio and print media. But I need the financial help of thousands of Christians to get the job done.

If you would like to make a donation to this campaign with a credit card through our secure Internet website, please click on the link below.

Thank you for standing up for the name of Jesus, and for a return to decency on the network TV airwaves.

Sign your email petition today — and remember to forward this message to all your friends!