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October 9, 2015

CBS affiliates fear fines from 9/11 documentary

by Anna Johns, posted Sep 2nd 2006 3:10PM
world trade centerThe CBS network intends to re-air the 9/11 documentary made by French filmmakers Gedeon and Jules Naudet but, because it contains profanity, some affiliates are opting out. About 12 affiliates have chosen not to air the documentary and instead will air alternate programming and twelve others will air the documentary later at night when fewer children are watching. At least two dozen more affiliates are undecided about whether to air the two-hour program.

It's sad just how scared the FCC has everyone. I saw this documentary the first time it aired and I honestly don't remember any profanity. None. I'm sure it was there but... gee whiz... that has got to be the least disturbing part of the film.

The documentary airs, uncut, on most CBS affiliates on September 10th.

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I was so impressed by this last night. Simply an amazing view and story of 9-11. I watched this with my 8 year old, and we do not swear in my house , but he knows that people swear, and this certainly was swearing that I did not find the least bit offensive.
He didn't notice the swearing, but we did have a long talk about anti american terrorist and why they want to kill us. We did have to watch some cartoons after to take his mind off of what we had discussed.

September 11 2006 at 10:10 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Gregory T. Slagle, TSgt, United States Air Force (Ret)

I have recently retired from the United States Air Force and I can't help but add my comments to this blog. It should first be noted, however, that this is the FIRST time EVER that I have come forth publicly on this subject. I am absolutely and completely APPAULED at the idea of a Network that would even REMOTELY consider sensoring the language of the brave men and women who risked and gave their lives on the fateful morning of 11 September 2001. My entire Air Force career I lived under the motto "I may not agree with what you say but I will glady continue to risk and, if necessary, GIVE my life in the defense of your right to say it." On the morning of 9 SEP 2001 I was in a storage warehouse on Hurlburt Field in Fort Walton Beach, Florida. I was unpacking a bunch of computer equipment our workcenter had just received when one of our civilian workers ran into the warehouse screaming "someone just blew up the World Trade Center!" It was so incredulous I could only stare and blink. At first, I thought he was pulling my leg but the sheer look of confusion and panic on his face told me he wasn't kidding. I ran to the nearest television and turned on CNN. Sure enough, there was one of the towers smoldering and burning. The feeling of helplessness began to wash over me as people began to gather around the television. All work ceased. More people began to gather and more. At first, it was total denial. Who could or would plant a bomb in the World Trade Center of all places? How could the security of the greatest country in the history of the world be so easily threatened AGAIN? Didn't Pearl Harbor teach us ANYTHING? It was quickly reported that it wasn't a bomb but rather a plane that had hit the tower. At that point we thought "What kind of moron pilot could crash a plane into a building as large as that?" We all discussed how the operations tempo and alcoholism of todays pilots could do just that. Soon, however, it was reported that the plane had been hijacked and shortly thereafter the other tower was struck by yet another plane. Suddenly, the base siren could be heard echoing through the bay of the warehouse like the wail of a dying banshee. Panic set in and people began to scurry about making phone calls to report the incident to subordinates and superiors alike. Many of us just stood and stared, tears welling up in our eyes while our teeth clenched in a silent resolve to defend our beloved country at any cost. That is about when one of the towers fell and the lives of many brave men and women were forever lost. By the time the 2nd tower fell, there wasn't a dry eye in the house. The pain and agony, however, was short lived as it turned to anger, frustration, helplessness and rock solid resolve. Instantly, every single man and woman in uniform silently vowed to do whatever it took and for however long it took to avenge the deaths of the innocent civilians that lost their lives that day. But the pain kept coming. We heard shortly thereafter that the pentagon had been hit and then we heard about the plane that went down in a field in Pennsylvania not far from where I, myself, grew up. Our Commander called an emergency briefing to officially inform everyone of the situation. Let me tell you, in the seven years I knew my commander, I never heard him raise his voice or swear more than an occassional damn. But that day, he cursed and swore like an Irish sailor in an OFFICIAL U.S. Air Force briefing!!! Swearing was common that day with almost EVERYONE I came in contact with, myself included. To make a long story, short, to sensor that emotion, resolve, panic, stress, fear, confusion, dedication and effort is absolute insanity. People who would sue over something like that simply don't care about other people at all. They are the types that would sue their own mothers for swearing at them as children. I am shocked, and appauled that Network affiliates would pull out of the project and even MORE appauled that the network would even CONSIDER sensoring the language of these brave men and women.

Gregory T. Slagle, TSgt, USAF (Ret)

September 05 2006 at 9:05 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

There is actually a lot of profanity in it, but it's understandable and it makes sense given the context. Who wouldn't say "Holy shit!" when they see a plane fly into the WTC? That's the way life is, and I'm disgusted by these affiliates for chickening out and not showing this wonderful documentary.

September 03 2006 at 4:36 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

First, let me say that I didn't see this documentary when it first aired; in fact, I tend to avoid all September 11-themed items like this. No matter their good intentions, I just find it too soon for these types of specials and movies. That being said, it's really sad that the bastards at the AFA and their wholly-owned sibsidiary, the FCC, have scared people so much. This is history, for good or bad, and sometimes history is not nice. It's just like the AFA to see the bad language uttered by people in the middle of a horric attack on America as the most terrible thing. I also think the affiliates who are not airing this documentary are total cowards. If the FCC was stupid enough to fine CBS and its affiliates for the language in this film it would have been the perfect vehicle to sue the FCC for censorship. I understand the purpose of the FCC and it has its place, but they are going too far. If the FCC is allowed to continue unchecked we'll be lucky if "darn" can be uttered on television.

September 03 2006 at 2:27 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

This was on last night on Channel 4 in the UK.

It was the "year on" version, presented by Robert De Niro and he does warn of language with a message about how they were real people & speaking at the heat of the moment.

In the UK, swearing isn't a problem at all after a watershed time (it was on at 10pm, the watershed is 9) but I think the TV companies & watchdogs are perfectly aware that in order to reflect real life sometimes they can use the language that real people use. It amazes me that some of the organisations in the USA want to sanitise language but are more than happy to glorify & sensationalise (sensationalize) war & violence.

The Naudet documentary should be obligatory viewing for anyone who has any reason to believe that the events of that day were anything less than devastating for the people involved & to show how brave the people who died & those who still go out there every day to save people's lives actually are.

Grow up, US networks & get over your false prudeness so that when I come over again next year I can continue to watch some great TV.

September 03 2006 at 8:40 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

This seriously irritates me, more than they usually do. It was 9/11. I'm pretty sure that people didn't say things like, "Golly, Bob! Things sure are darn scary."
It's a documentary about real events with real people doing things they really do.

September 02 2006 at 11:04 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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