Court Overturns NYPD Blue's 7 Year Old Indecency Fine
Proponents of government-sponsored television censorship were struck a major blow today after the Second Circuit Court of Appeals struck down NYPD Blue’s historic, now seven year old fine for airing Charlotte Ross’ backside during a primetime episode. The scene is relatively tame by movie or even premium cable standards, but it caused a major stir back in the day. Ultimately, the FCC fined ABC and several of its affiliates 1.4 million dollars for it, but after a lengthy legal battle, it doesn’t seem like they’ll be paying anytime soon.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, the court decision cited a July ruling that also threw out FCC fines which called the indecency laws “unconstitutionally vague”. In all, the last year hasn’t been a good one for the FCC, as they’ve lost several major court battles, but it’s unlikely we’ll see an end to these types of indecency fines anytime in the near future. None of the courts have ruled the government doesn’t have the right to monitor the airwaves, simply that their language in what is and is not acceptable is simply too vague.
Still, it’s a victory for Free Speech fans, and that’s always a cause to celebrate. At the end of the day, it’s a parent’s responsibility to decide what’s right not only for themselves but for their children. One size fits all government rulings don’t benefit anyone, save the people who scream the loudest.
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