Andy Griffith PROPAGANDASubmitted by cseman on Thu, 12/25/2008 - 14:16
Has anyone noticed the propaganda America was slapped with in the 60s in the form of the Andy Griffith Show?? I bought the show, remembering the wholesome small town virtues it taught me as a kid, but was shocked to find it chock FULL of propaganda! I found a blog post from a guy that remarked on the communist element of this propaganda, and my reply on the big government, anti-libertarian element follows. Check it out and comment:
"The old Andy Griffith Show, one of the most-watched, best-loved sitcoms ever, is lauded as a slice of small-town, apple-pie Americana, hearkening back to a simpler, better time when men were men, women were virtuous, and children occasionally were well-behaved. At the same time, one might ask: When a television program from any era is praised by the mainstream media, could there be some underlying leftist message? The answer is yes.
"The first and most obvious commie message is Andy’s refusal to carry a gun. Heroically, he captures evildoers every time without a pistol. Notice also that Barney, the one who wants to carry a gun, is a buffoon, and whenever he touches his gun it goes off at random. There is no question what sentiment the producers were expressing. Further, on those rare occasions when there’s a truly violent criminal to pursue, Andy reaches into the rifle rack. And you thought Rosie O’Donnell was the first gun-control hypocrite.
"Another modern, leftist, anti-everything-traditional message is the complete absence of a nuclear family on the Griffith show. Barney is single and desperate; Andy is widowed and moderately content; Gomer and Goober were single and whatever; Thelma Lou and Helen were single; Bea was a spinster…I can’t remember whether anybody on the show was married with children. The nuclear family was passé even for Mayberry residents of the early 1960’s. Other anti-family messages: A rare married couple portrayed on the show wasn’t happy unless they were having violent domestic disputes; another couple, with the husband played by Jack Nicholson, abandoned their baby at the beginning of an episode.
"There are other implausible tweaks. On some old episodes, you’ll see Andy, Barney, Thelma Lou, and Helen having dinner at the local greasy spoon after 10 P.M. This almost never happened in real towns like Mayberry, and in fact is not very popular today in the south outside cities the size of Atlanta. You’ll also see occasional mention of cocktails before dinner – a decidedly citified custom that would have been extraordinary in a small southern town in the 1960’s.
"And there are anti-gender role stereotype messages. Whenever a man from the country walks into town to find a wife, he is a buffoon. Earnest T. Bass and a two-episode character played by Alan Hale represented this anachronism.(Alan Hale played the Skipper on Gilligan’s Island; in Mayberry, he came complete with overalls.) Both considered it the man’s job to pursue the woman and to provide for the family later on. No wonder they were portrayed as buffoons. And for their parts, Andy and Barney endured all sorts of abuse at the hands of Helen and Thelma Lou. On many an occasion, Andy and Barn would (completely innocently) step into a pile of the women’s wrath, and spend most of an episode trying to apologize, explain, and beg their way out of it. Of course, the tables were seldom, perhaps never, turned.
"There are other messages. The old man who owned the department store was a miser who hated people and cheated his employees. No one ever made a strong moral statement about Otis, the town drunk who had a wife at home but seemed to spend most nights in jail. Helen, the public schoolteacher, knew what was good for children better than their parents did.
"There are plenty of superficial old-fashioned small-town quirks in the shows, such as the town band and the townspeople’s exaggerated ignorance of anything cosmopolitan. Occasionally the point was made that children need to learn discipline. But these features always floated on the surface. The underlying messages were that the nuclear family is uncommon and perhaps unnecessary; gender-role stereotypical living is mostly without merit; guns are bad; capitalists are evil; teachers are better than parents; and according to one ridiculous episode, killing a bird (by accident, no less) is about the greatest crime imaginable."
"Has anyone noticed the big brother propaganda?? Emminent Domain is praised, free trade and private enterprise (moonshine) is scorned, people are locked up for expressing their dissent to governmental tyranny and for a myriad of other God-given rights too, such as singing on the sidewalk etc. And it's interesting to note the reoccuring theme that the Sheriff is honor-bound to enforce the law no matter how unjust it is! This is big brother, fascist propaganda!!! And to think I loved this show as a kid. Can't believe I bought several seasons.
"In fact, many times, Andy or Barney ADMITTEDLY trump up charges to lock people up on! This show, tho "clean and wholesome," is one of the most anti Constitution pieces of TV ever put out! I'm just outraged. What a clever scheme to lure the Christians of this country and the good people of the 60s into accepting big government and loose construction of the constitution as legitimate and just."
So does anyone have a comment or more information of this show's sinister message and how it came to be?