Curb obscenity on air
Posted Thursday, May 3 2012 at 18:30
During his address while opening the East African Journalists Convention on Wednesday, President Kibaki castigated those media outlets that thrive on airing extremely vulgar talk, as well as those that permit obscenity on television during family viewing time.
Though the President did not indicate whether the government intends to do anything about the matter, sooner or later, something has to give.
After the liberalisation of the air-waves, it would be retrogressive for the government to censor the contents of radio or TV programmes.
Nobody wants to go back to the bad old days when tired bureaucrats sat in an office and dictated what Kenyans should watch or hear.
But there comes a time when even liberalism can go too far.
It is a fact that many parents cringe when, in the presence of their children, they switch on the radio only to hear unimaginable obscenities being shamelessly uttered by call-in participants.
And herein is the conundrum. Where should we draw the line between immoral content and freedom of the media? When does protest at moral turpitude turn into intolerant censorship?
This is an issue that the media fraternity must think deeply about.