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House measure calls on FCC to crack down on ‘indecent’ TV portrayals of premarital sex

The Federal Communications Commission would be encouraged to crack down on TV portrayals of premarital sex in fictional TV programs, reality shows and ads, under a non-binding memorial that won the approval of the House State Affairs Committee this morning, including “implied portrayal of or discussion of sexual intercourse on television when it pertains to unmarried persons … including jocular references to premarital sex, characters lying in bed together and characters disrobing or undressing.”

HJM 2, sponsored by Rep. Darrell Bolz, R-Caldwell and six GOP cosponsors, cites the Idaho Constitution’s statement that “the first concern of all good government is the virtue and sobriety of the people, and the purity of the home,” and says, “Inappropriate and indecent material is being broadcast more frequently.”  It also notes that the FCC is charged preventing the broadcast of indecent programming between 6 a.m. and 10 p.m., “when children might be watching,” and calls on the federal agency to “resume enforcement of traditional American standards of decency.”

The committee’s support of the measure wasn’t unanimous. Among those opposing it was Rep. John Gannon, D-Boise, who said, “I don’t think it takes into account different American lifestyles.” HJM 2 now moves to the full House for debate. Its co-sponsors are Sen. Todd Lakey and Reps. Rick Youngblood, Brent Crane, Gayle Batt, Gary Collins and Jeff Thompson.

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Betsy Z. Russell
Betsy Z. Russell joined The Spokesman-Review in 1991. She currently is a reporter in the Boise Bureau covering Idaho state government and politics, and other news from Idaho's state capital.

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