Jewish World Review Oct. 27, 2003 / 1 Mar-Cheshvan, 5764

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Consumer Reports

EXTREME media | If you've ever wanted to be a reporter, here's your chance. Walk into any record store, and ask the clerk who's buying the new CD by gangsta rapper Ludacris featuring the sure-to-be classic tune "Hoes in My Room." Then go to the nearest multiplex theatre and see who's buying tickets to "The Texas Chainsaw Massacre" and "Kill Bill," a movie some have labeled as the most violent film ever made. But if you don't want to do the leg work, I can tell you right now who is consuming these products: children.

Let's take a look at "Kill Bill" (which, by the way, is not about me). The New York Times writes: "the undeniable passion that drives "Kill Bill" is fascinating, even, strange to say it, endearing."

Wow, that sounds like fun. We all like "endearing." Well, cuddle up to this; "Kill Bill" features seven arm severings, five leg severings, two hatchet deaths and a closeup scalping. If you are keeping score, 45 individuals are slain by swords, and a pregnant woman gets shot in the head.

The director of the film, Quentin Tarantino, said this on television: "If you are a 12-year-old girl or boy, you must go and see 'Kill Bill.' You will have a damn good time. Boys will have a great time, girls will have a dose of girl power. If you are a cool parent out there, go take your kids to the movie."

Calling all cool parents, are you hearing this?

To be fair, Tarantino is a talented man. But he is childless and clueless when it comes to kids digesting violence.

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And how about my pal Ludacris, the "artist" who told my TV program that he "loves the kids." Well, he's doing fine, thank you, his record hit No. 1 on the charts. And who wouldn't love lyrics like this: "So get your lighters, get your drink, and I tell you what I'm so f---ed up, and screwed up. If anybody try to blow my high, you know I'ma tell 'em f--- you, f--- you, f--- you (ad infinitum)."

Revealingly, both Ludacris and Tarantino have been treated great by many in the elite media as they publicize their "creative" vehicles. And therein lies the problem.

Generally speaking, the American press has embraced and promoted degrading entertainment, succeeding in making it socially acceptable. The turning point came a few years ago when Elton John did a duet with Eminem on national television. Note to Elton: I remember when rock was young and nobody sang a song called "Hoes in My Room." Thanks for advancing the culture.

Once again I have to tell you that I am not coming at this from a moralistic point of view. If you are over 18 and want to pay $10 to watch a chainsaw guy slaughter people, then go ahead. Just don't come over to my house. If you're an adult who wants to hear some guy rant about prostitutes jumping on him, hey, who am I to tell you you're a moron?

But children are something else. It is time for all Americans to realize that your homes have been invaded by insidious forces beyond your control. That harmful music, movies, computer images and television will affect your kids, no matter what you do. And that the American media is celebrating that very troubling turn of events.

And if you still don't believe me, consider this. Halloween is a few days away, and a first grade teacher in Biloxi, Miss., has already held a costume party for her class. One little boy came dressed as a pimp, complementing another little girl made up to be a whore. Somewhere the Devil is grinning.

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JWR contributor Bill O'Reilly is host of the Fox News show, "The O'Reilly Factor," and author of, most recently, "Who's Looking Out for You?" Comments by clicking here.

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© 2003 Creators Syndicate