Editorial voices from the U.S., elsewhere

April 19, 2013

Excerpts from recent editorials in newspapers in the United States and abroad as compiled by the Associated Press:

Parkersburg (W.Va.) News and Sentinel

Even critics would have to admit that “Buckwild,” the “reality television” program that debuted this year, was a runaway hit. While not reaching the ratings zenith of “Jersey Shore,” the show “Buckwild” replaced, the network was convinced beyond any reasonable doubt the best was yet to come.

In ratings, that is.

However, there will be no second season of “Buckwild. The MTV television network canceled plans to resume production on the series.

“Buckwild” followed the escapades of a group of young West Virginians in the Sissonville area. Once the show began airing, however, things turned sour for two cast members. One was arrested for driving under the influence. Another is charged with drug possession.

Then tragedy struck. One of the show’s breakout stars and most popular cast members, young Shain Gandee, died along with two other men in a tragic accident.

Gandee’s death and charges against the two other cast members would have guaranteed a well-watched and highly rated second season for “Buckwild.”

But MTV officials said no.

They said they did so out of respect for Gandee. They may also have wondered if stardom was having negative effects on the show’s cast – and how it might influence viewers.

Whatever their reasons, MTV officials decided to forego a money-making television success. They did the right thing – something all too uncommon in the entertainment industry.

Journal Inquirer Manchester, Conn.

A major shift in politics seems to be under way. Elected officials and candidates for office are more often being judged not by their accomplishments but by their private lives.

How different the country’s history might have been if the private lives of some of its leaders had caused their banishment from politics. Consider Thomas Jefferson’s supposed liaison with Sally Hemings; John F. Kennedy’s sexual escapades; Franklin Roosevelt’s dalliances with his secretary; and Bill Clinton’s fun with his intern, which he denied on national television only to admit it later. What if Dwight Eisenhower had been forced to resign just prior to the Normandy invasion because of his relationship with his driver and assistant?

Should such activities disqualify people from serving their country?

The Star, Toronto

Barely three months after ending a caustic labor dispute that discredited both sides, the National Hockey League and its players have found unity through integrity. They’ve signed a landmark deal that doesn’t concern salary caps, revenue shares, arbitration or free agency. It’s about advancing human rights.

The NHL and the National Hockey League Players’ Association have entered into a formal partnership with the You Can Play Project, an organization dedicated to ending homophobia on playing fields and in locker rooms in every sport.

The new agreement will provide education and training for teams and players on combating homophobia. You Can Play will conduct seminars on equality at the NHL’s rookie symposium, and the project will be integrated into the sport’s health program so that any player in need of counseling can confidentially seek it out. The message will go out to fans and the media, too, through high-profile public service announcements.

But the biggest impact of this partnership will likely stem from the simple fact that it exists. Few sports, if any, have a “tough guy” tradition that runs deeper than hockey’s with its drop-the-gloves, play-through-the-pain, rock ’em, sock ’em ethos.

It seems only a matter of time before other leagues come aboard and LGBT athletes in all sports find more freedom to compete without hiding their orientation.



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