WOOD TV Interviewed Bill Johnson About the 50 Shades of Grey Petition
Author: Bill Johnson  


Thoughts on last evenings interview. 

WOOD-TV got word about our objection to “Fifty Shades of Grey” from someone receiving our emails. 

We go into interviews with secular media knowing that generally speaking the reporter conducts themselves winsomely.  They are merely doing their job:  to get from you as much as they can for the storyline they want to report. Being interviewed you are in a place of trying to get your important message across. 

I was able to articulate my talking points - although most of them were not aired in the brief airtime.  Dani (the female interviewer) asked very good questions.  I had no problem with her questions.  Yet, as is often the case, the real heart and soul of our concern was not conveyed in the report that was aired.

My main points and our deep concern regarding “Fifty Shades of Grey” - which I stated, but weren’t included in the news report - are as follows:

1.      That the books (“Fifty Shades of Grey” have been consistently characterized as pornographic, romanticizing sexual abuse and centering on themes of BDSM (Bondage, Discipline, Domination, Submission, Sadism and Masochism). 

2.      This type of material (BDSM) cultivates a culture of rape and sexual violence which is so much now permeating our society.
3.      That individuals, children, families and communities are degraded and damaged by pornographic images and themes; that what we place before our eyes does impact.

4.      That I have spoken with countless individuals who have been damaged by pornography personally and/or in their family.  That, in all likelihood, I will also receive a telephone call as a result of this interview from someone harmed by pornographic material such as “Fifty Shades of Grey.” They will convey broken-heartedness over the great destruction caused.

5.      That if care is not exercised, there will be people who will watch “Fifty Shades of Grey” and will be drawn into a lifestyle at a young age (or maybe not so young age) of bondage and sexual abuse that they will not be able to get out of.

6.      By way of our petition drive our desire is to inform, educate, and warn people not to have anything to do with pornography and then, of course, not to have anything to do with “Fifty Shades of Grey” – in book, movie and/or DVD form.

7.      I stated that we hadn’t called for a boycott of the theater because we felt that people would be able to connect the dots for themselves.  That we have received emails and have had conversations regarding the insensitive nature the theater owner has had toward those who have contacted him by email or by telephone call.  Too, we know that he has also deleted statements from those in opposition to the movie from Fremont Cinema’s Facebook page.   I commented that by the rude manner in which he has commented to persons who are troubled by him bringing the movie to Fremont that he is planting a seed of distaste in his “public relations” approach.  He has hurt his business.  How will that show up?  There will be people that will go down the road now because of the way that he has responded to various ones.   They will have connected the dots.  They will boycott his theater.   For one, I will boycott Fremont Cinema.

Example:  (this did not come out in the interview)

One person received the following reply from Fremont Cinema from her expression of concern:

… Furthermore children should not be seeing this film. If they are, that is a parenting issue. We are not the parents. Does this also mean if we decide not to show this film, that if an atheist comes in and demands they don't want us to show Christian films that we should not show those films either? Just because you do not agree with this type of film doesn't mean others don't. I find it very unchristianlike to push your views/beliefs on others. We are a business, not a church, leave your personal beliefs/views for service on Sundays. If you don't like the fact we live in a free country then that is also your issue. No one is forcing you to come see the film, so do not try to force others to not have the option to see the film.

Lastly, what did come out on the airtime was at least this.

It is about doing what caring parents, grandparents, and communities have done for many years – standing up for what is worthy and decent and opposing that which is degrading and potentially destructive.

Nonetheless, they gave Dan at Fremont Cinema the last word quoting:

Dan Taylor, who owns Fremont Cinemas, said that he has heard from about 600 people who support the film and about 30 with complaints.

“We can’t start picking and choosing what films are going to be, because we’re going to get a few phone calls from one specific group that finds that film morally wrong,” said Taylor over the phone from out of town.

Taylor said he was contacted by people who were disappointed by “American Sniper,” which is currently playing in his theater. He said he also has previously received complaints when his theater aired a Christian film.

“If we [don’t show a film] once, then basically we have to be fair and we have to do it constantly and then what happens? We run out of films that we’re going to be able to show,” said Taylor. “We’re not a church. We’re there for everybody’s entertainment, and people have a choice whether or not that want to watch a movie or not.  If they don’t want to watch that film, they don’t have to buy a ticket.”

And so have I given Dan the last word.

But what about you?   I found this following quote from Oswald Chambers this morning.  It has real application for us as believers.  Learning to stand. 

... You can refuse to let God count you as one who is “separated to the gospel….” Or you can say, “I don’t care if I am treated like ‘the filth of the world’ as long as the gospel is proclaimed.” A true servant of Jesus Christ is one who is willing to experience martyrdom for the reality of the gospel of God.

~ Oswald Chambers, My Utmost for His Highest

For further information:

The interview

Hopefully you’ve already decided by now that Fifty Shades of Grey isn’t worth your time, but since, as Christians, we’re called to engage the culture for Christ, it’ll be helpful for you to know a few things about it so that you can converse sensibly and convincingly with your friends and coworkers. 

Here, then, are 50 things you should probably know about Fifty Shades of Grey:

Category: Culture  ADA: on  Status: on
Tags: 50 Shades of Grey movie WoodTV 8 interview Bill Johnson

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