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KNBR remark showcases media disconnect with Christianity

Trey Parker and Matt Stone created South Park, which frequently includes taking the Lord's name in vain
Trey Parker and Matt Stone created South Park, which frequently includes taking the Lord's name in vain
Photo by Jesse Grant

media-Christian relationship


Nobody expects the national secular media to represent Christianity. One would expect in a nation with over four in five citizens calling themselves Christian to respect the faith. Our national media's disconnect with the true faith was evident on KNBR 680 AM in San Francisco Friday, Aug. 22.

At 2:39 p.m. PDT on the Fitz and Brooks show, one of the men swore. This was not the standard reference to one's posterior that has joined those swear words referring to condemnation and the home thereafter, but a request for the Lord to do the former. To many Christians, those two words in collaboration are worse than the "F" word.

Even most Christians exclaim, "Oh, my God!" without necessarily meaning to call of their Lord. While that is a violation of the Ten Commandments, the new covenant established by Jesus Christ forgives all sins. After all, "Whosoever hates his brother is a murderer" (I John 3:15) and has thus violated a commandment. It is in our nature to be sinful and we are not capable of avoiding it always, which is likely why God is gracious to forgive us.

It goes to the next level to tie the Lord to a curse. Saying it on Comedy Central on roasts and shows like South Park are one thing, but on a midday sports talk show?

For that to not only slip out but slip through media censors (presuming they broadcast with a delay—it is no surprise that KNBR did not respond over the weekend to a request for comment) and not come with any apology is telling. It shows they did not even notice they had uttered a significant curse, neither in their own daily speech nor that of society in general.

It would be bad business to take unnecessary actions that alienate any significant portion of their audience. As much as we blame the media for things they deliver, they give people what they want to hear and base that on the top-producing business practices.

Mainstream media is not the cause but the result of the society it reflects. The fact that "GD" was said on the air as though without incident says how little most of modern society cares.

Make no mistake about it, this would not happen in the Bible Belt. Bay Area values play a role in this, but no more than macho, locker room-style values many sports fans listening hold that embrace crude terminology.

This happens because Christians are not standing against it. Some of them do not care and some just choose to be silent, whether or not they remain KNBR listeners.

What Christians must ask of each other is if our values are not represented is because they are too weak or too strong. Self-righteousness tends to lead to intolerance, and that is a worse representative of Jesus Christ than lack of conviction.

It is possible to stand up for one's beliefs without disrespecting another's position. It is possible to address the things said without condemning or boycotting those with different values. The lost sheep may answer if enough voices speak without shouting.

Contact KNBR and simply and politely let them know use of that curse is not appreciated, and they will be thankful for the feedback and address the matter. Act like it is an attack on Christianity and the intolerance brand burns in further.

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