Thursday, January 20, 2005
Mellow Yellow, Sponge Bob, and Wingnuts
When the song "Mellow Yellow" came out, band members said the song referred to smoking dried banana peels for a "legal high." Chaos ensued, sales of bananas to minors were banned, legislators proposed harsh anti-banana-peel laws. (I personally recall being sent to the store by my mother for bananas, only to be refused by a horrified store manager. They became really suspicious when I told them nobody smoked banana peels, figuring I must be trying to put one over on them.)
Eventually, scientists were able to convince people the whole thing was ridiculous, and that banana peels don't contain any hallucinogens.
Which brings us to SpongeBob SquarePants. Yes, our moral values are again being threatened by a "yellow peril":
Personally, I think James Dobson (a.k.a. SpongeDob Stickypants) and the rest of his group have been smoking too many banana peels.
...James Dobson, founder of right-wing Christian group Focus on the Family, singled out SpongeBob at a black-tie dinner in Washington in the run-up to President Bush's inauguration, the New York Times said.
SpongeBob - who appears on the children's cable channel Nickelodeon - is seen as an icon for adult gay men in the US, apparently because he regularly holds hands with his sidekick Patrick.
"We see the video as an insidious means by which the organisation is manipulating and potentially brainwashing kids," Paul Batura, a spokesman for Focus on the Family, told the New York Times.
Mr Rodgers said the groups may have confused (his We Are Family Foundation) with an unrelated organisation with a similar name that supports gay youth.
WAFF spokesman Mark Barondeso told the newspaper that anyone who thought the video promoted homosexuality "needs to visit their doctor and get their medication increased".