Out of Respect for Islam, CNN to Halt Coverage of Islamic Countries, Events
ATLANTA—Out of respect for the religion of Islam, CNN President Jonathan N. Klein announced today that the network 11’ill no longer air content that is offensive to the religion’s followers; including any other material that distorts the image of the “religion of peace.”
‘Two months ago, we made the maverick decision not to air the Mohammed cartoons—not because all of us in Atlanta are afraid of being turned into human shish kabobs, but because we don’t want to offend the followers of this great world religion,” said Klein. “The fact that we’re still alive—er, I mean, that we’ve gotten positive feedback from the world—shows that we made the right decision.”
As part of the new policy, CNN will not air any material that depicts Islamic followers involved in violent acts, since that goes against the tenets of Islam, the religion of peace. As a result, CNN reporters, producers, and camera crews today pulled out of Afghanistan, Albania, Algeria, Bangladesh, Chechnya, Cote d’Ivoire, Djibouti, Ethiopia, Egypt, Gambia, Guinea, Iran, Iraq, Jordan, Kuwait, Kazakhstan, Lebanon, Libya, Malaysia, Mali, Morocco, Nigeria, Pakistan, Palestine, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Somalia, and United Arab Emirates, as well as parts of Detroit and Washington, D.C.
“Since there won’t be any news we can broadcast from those areas, there is no reason to keep news crews there,” Klein said. “If you look at our Web site today, you will notice it’s pretty much Dick Cheney and Britney Spears.”
When asked who would cover events in Islamic countries, Klein responded, “We’ll leave it to MSNBC and those other guys. I heard the Food Channel might do something on Middle Eastern cuisine in the near future. You can check there.”
Klein assured CNN staffers there will be no layoffs. “Some of these producers and reporters will be sent to the Vatican,” he offered. ‘There are so many accounts of how the Church is oppressing women, the poor, and dissenters. As a news organization with a conscience, we want to get to the bottom of those stories.”
Pope Partial to Catholics, Say Most American in New Poll
ALLENTOWN, PENNSYLVANIA— Could the Holy Father have a soft spot for Catholics? That is the belief of the majority of Americans surveyed in a new TIME Magazine/ CNN poll released today.
In the poll of 3,058 people, 95 percent said they believed Pope Benedict XVI is “partial to those of the Catholic faith,” while 83 percent said they believe the pope “spends too much time thinking about, praying for, and dealing with Catholics.”
“The poll results are pretty stunning,” said Dan Wright, senior religion editor at TIME Magazine. “According to most Americans, he comes across as being pretty obsessed with Catholics. People’ want to know what the deal is.”
The results show that some are upset about the favoritism. “He always seems to be interested in their issues,” said Peter Knight, a Mormon apologist and writer from Boise, Idaho. “He could write an encyclical to us if he wanted. I mean, we had that whole polygamy episode. That was pretty newsworthy. But I haven’t heard any rumblings about that. What do I have to do, become a Catholic?”
“I’m pretty offended,” said Roger McNelty, senior art director for Hoffman/Turner Advertising Agency in Allentown, Pennsylvania. “I’m a lapsed Episcopalian bisexual with attention deficit disorder, and I have yet to hear the pope mention anything about my specific needs in any of his speeches.”
George Fitzpatrick, a religious analyst in Wichita, Kansas, has been tracking data on Benedict since he was elected to’ the papacy. “If this trend continues, the pope may find his following restricted primarily to Roman Catholics.”