Did you know that broadband Internet access is a “justice” issue? No? Then you haven’t been listening, as the National Council of Churches and other assorted Christian groups have declared that it is so, as they launched a new coalition of the usual suspects, this time for “media justice”:
Leading off its “Bring Betty Broadband” campaign to promote equal high-speed-internet access for all, a diverse gathering of religious groups has launched “So We Might See,” a national interfaith coalition for media justice.
“Betty” is a fictional character, just like some of the people involved in this campaign.
“So We Might See is an ecumenical, interfaith coalition that has come together to educate and advocate for media justice, both within our faith communities and beyond,” says the Rev. J. Bennett Guess, executive director of the United Church of Christ’s Office of Communication, Inc. “We will work across religious lines to address the social, structural and economic barriers that prevent equal access to the media and telecommunications.”
That’s mainline-speak for, “Some people don’t have enough money to do what some other people are able to do, and that’s bad. Time for a government program!”
“People of faith have been at the forefront of significant legal battles to advocate and safeguard media-related policies that affect children, women and people of color,” says Wesley M. “Pat” Pattillo, program director for justice, advocacy and communication for the National Council of Churches. “The formation of this media-focused religious coalition is an important next step in concretizing our shared commitment to media justice.”
Evidently white men are never poor and have all the access to broadband that they could ever want. Either that or the NCC doesn’t think that they deserve broadband, unlike children, women, and people of color. Or maybe this is just standard claptrap to justify what the NCC doesn’t think is justifiable unless it effects some particular minority group.
“Leaders within our respective faith traditions have pledged to engage our members in political education and advocacy on media-related issues,” says the Rev. Jerry L. Van Marter of the Presbyterian News Service and chair of the NCC Communication Commission. “So We Might See is committed to producing edgy viral campaigns and sophisticated electronic messaging that will attract thousands to pay attention to important policy considerations that relate to the media and our daily lives.”
“Edgy viral campaigns,” eh? Those would presumably like the United Church of Christ’s “ejector seat” and “bouncer” commercials that managed to offend practically everybody in the Body of Christ outside of the far left.
On July 14, the coalition will launch its first joint campaign “Bring Betty Broadband” to bring increased public attention on those who still lack access to high-speed internet services. The coalition also is planning campaigns this year on internet freedom/neutrality, violence in the media, and over-commercialization.
After this they’re planning on launching a campaign to bring attention to those who still lack home theater or the opportunity to buy a television station.
“Bring Betty Broadband will help engage individuals and congregations into meaningful public dialogue about the development and implementation of policies that will help bring broadband to all Americans,” says Cheryl Leanza, policy director of the UCC’s OC, Inc. The act calls for the Federal Communications Commission to develop a national broadband plan by the end of the year.
Because while there are still Americans who lack access to broadband, home theaters, and television stations, the government must get involved!
The viral campaign is built around the woes of a fictional-but-reality-based Betty, a new computer owner who lacks broadband access. BringBettyBroadband.org includes advocacy materials to bring greater attention to broadband deployment, affordability and access education.
Don’t miss the goofy video at the link above. It’s next to the headline, “Betty deserves better.” To which I can’t help but ask, “why?” Since when does anyone “deserve” broadband Internet access?