Knives and Head-Butting? Evangelical Media Critic Hates Everything Except Guns
Bill Berkowitz printable version print page     Bookmark and Share
Thu Jan 03, 2013 at 12:47:17 PM EST
For a man who has so much to say about media, movies, television, sexuality, and homosexuality, why does Ted Baehr remain silent about America's obsession with guns and gun violence?

Baehr is a conservative Christian movie critic and media pundit who will never be mistaken for Roger Ebert, the Rolling Stone's Peter Travers, or The New York Times' A.O. Scott. Nevertheless, he has found his niche by cranking out movie reviews and media/cultural commentary for the faithful -- conservative evangelical Christians.

Baehr has lots to say about violence in the movies, violent video games, and the secularization of our culture, but he is virtually silent on America's obsession with guns and gun control.

Baehr is the chairman of the Christian Film & Television Commission, which according to its web site is "a non-profit organization dedicated to redeeming the values of the mass media of entertainment according to biblical principles by influencing entertainment industry leaders and by informing and equipping the general public about the media's impact on audiences, especially children and teenagers." He is also the founder and publisher of Movieguide - "the family guide to movies and entertainment."  

In late-July, Baehr wrote a column responding to the shootings at the midnight showing of The Dark Knight Rises in an Aurora, Colorado movie theater, which killed 12 people and injured 58 others. Most observers of these events understand that there are multiple causes for shootings like Virginia Tech, Aurora, the Wisconsin Sikh Temple killings which left six dead and four wounded, and, more recently, the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown Connecticut, where 20 children and six adults were murdered. 

Access to treatment for people with mental health problems needs to be expanded. Some look at our violence obsessed culture. However, it is the easy availability and access to guns that remains an overriding issue.

In a column titled "Who's to Blame for Colorado Theater Shooting?" Baehr addressed the shootings by thoughtlessly  comparing gun violence to the use of knives and headbutting: 

"Some people will blame it on guns, although countries that have tried hard to crack down on guns, like England, are now finding that knives and headbutting are out of control. Thus, it isn't the headbutting or the knives, but the fact that people are stewing in the juice of their own wickedness, because, as the Bible says, they don't know the loving God who gave us a way of salvation through Jesus Christ from the wickedness of the human heart."

More recently, commenting about the Newtown Massacre, Baehr, along with Movieguide's  Tom Snyder, compare the carnage of the Newtown massacre with a "same day" stabbing incident in China and they insist, "gun control is not the answer. And, judging by the failure of our schools and our government, neither are they."

Baehr and Snyder take the Mike Huckabee, Franklin Graham, James Dobson approach:

"By removing God, the Bible, God's Law, Jesus Christ, and the Holy Spirit from society, including the mass media and the schools, we are raising generations of people with no faith in God or Jesus and, hence, no moral conscience, and no self-control. If so many people have no faith, no moral conscience and no self-control, then it's no wonder our society is suffering from all these mass murders by evil lone gunmen."

Agitating in favor of fracking

These days, Baehr dons his pro-industry hat to take on the new film, Promised Land, directed by Gus Van Zant, and co-written and co-starring Matt Damon and John Krasinski. He's irked that the movie dares to raise questions about fracking, and that it is partially financed by foreign oil interests aimed at sinking America's natural gas industry.

Matt Damon plays a salesman for a fracking company who is trying to get rural Pennsylvanians to sign agreements leasing their land for natural-gas drilling.  

In a recent column, posted at, Baehr wrote that the United Arab Emirates, which "contains the world's fifth-largest natural gas reserves and ranks ninth in liquefied natural gas exports," is "partially funding" Promised Land. "UAE's decision to fund a movie with an agenda against U.S. domestic natural gas exploration and production is wise considering the recent push by U.S.-based producers to begin exporting more natural gas to countries like Japan, where 90 percent of the UAE's liquefied natural gas is exported," Baehr wrote.

The Christian movie critic argued that "U.S citizens benefit from low energy prices thanks to the very hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling technologies the makers of Promised Land wish to ban."

While Baehr does not mention one word about some of the environmental hazards caused by fracking, he is more than willing to declare that "Promised Land is nothing more than a propaganda piece funded by Middle East oil interests to destroy America's energy independence."

Baehr's organization is also petitioning the Motion Picture Association of America to change the rating of Django Unchained, from R to NC-17, so that no one under 17 would be allowed in theaters to see the movie. (An R rated film allows for children under seventeen to see the movie only if accompanied by a parent or adult guardian.)

"This movie ends with two of the most violent scenes we've ever seen in more than 27 years of reviewing movies," said Baehr. "As countless research studies and recent events in Connecticut have shown, some young boys and men like to imitate the violence they see in movies, TV, and video games."

Baehr's Christian Film & Television Commission lists four "Campaigns" on its web site: "Tell The MPAA To Give `Django Unchained' NC-17 Rating"; "Tell `Hollywood' Jesus Is Not A Swear Word"; "Stop The Blasphemous Movie `Jesus of Nazareth'"; and, "Tell Disney To Pull Homosexual Comics."  

The organization also claims that over the past four years it has won five "Victories," including the cancellation by ABC/Disney's "of its `bigoted' show `GCB,' ["Good Christian Bitches"] which mocked and ridiculed Christians...," and the cancellation of the NBC's series, "The Playboy Club," which was "a victory of righteousness over indecency," said Baehr.

In February, Joe Mantegna, star of TV's "Criminal Minds" and "Cars 2," and his daughter Gia, will be hosting Baehr's Christian Film and Television Commission will be holding its 21st Annual Faith & Values Awards Gala and Report to the Entertainment Industry.

An impressive share, I just given this onto a colleague who was doing a little analysis on this. And he in fact bought me breakfast because I found it for him.. smile. So let me reword that: Thnx for the treat! But yeah Thnkx for spending the time to discuss this, I feel strongly about it and love reading more on this topic. If possible, as you become expertise, would you mind updating your blog with more details? It is highly helpful for me. Big thumb up for this blog post!madeira plastica | plastic lumber | Ssangyong | concessionaria hyundaiMi4Wr

by dennishobson on Wed May 15, 2013 at 09:32:56 AM EST

In late-July, Baehr wrote a column responding to the shootings at the midnight showing of The Dark Knight Rises in an Aurora, Colorado movie theater, which killed 12 people and injured 58 others. buy Cheap Youtube Comments

by maldes on Tue Aug 06, 2013 at 05:44:23 AM EST

In late-July, Baehr wrote a column responding to the shootings at the midnight showing of The Dark Knight Rises in an Aurora, Colorado movie theater, which killed 12 people and injured 58 others. Most observers of these events understand that there are multiple buy youtube views

by maldes on Sat Aug 17, 2013 at 10:41:46 AM EST

In late-July, Baehr wrote a column responding to the shootings at the midnight showing of The Dark Knight Rises in an Aurora, Colorado movie theater, which killed 12 people Garcinia Cambogia Extract

by maldes on Mon Aug 19, 2013 at 05:26:04 AM EST

Baehr is the chairman of the Christian Film & Television Commission, which according to its web site is "a non-profit organization dedicated to redeeming the values of the mass media of entertainment according to biblical principles by influencing entertainment Green Coffee Bean Extract

by maldes on Tue Aug 20, 2013 at 09:16:56 AM EST

In late-July, Baehr wrote a column responding to the shootings at the midnight showing of The Dark Knight Rises in an Aurora, Colorado movie theater, which killed 12 people Raspberry Ketone

by maldes on Tue Aug 20, 2013 at 09:42:06 AM EST

WWW Talk To Action

Falling Starr
Reports from around the nation are reporting Ken Starr, President of Baylor University, has been fired as head of the Baptist school.  Other stories......
By wilkyjr (0 comments)
Bluegrass Bonanza: Ky. Theocrat Loses Grip On Statehouse Seat
Political news of late has been dominated by three people - Donald Trump, Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders. They've certainly provided good copy, but......
By Rob Boston (1 comment)
Political Piety Panned: We Don't Need A 'God's Party'
Every few years, a political pundit comes along and proclaims that the Religious Right is dead or on the verge of dying. I started......
By Rob Boston (7 comments)
Trump Campaign Tied To 2nd White Nationalist Party Leader
Even as Donald Trump seeks to tack to the center, and leave behind his earlier, wildly controversial statements on Hispanics and Muslims, mounting evidence......
By Bruce Wilson (4 comments)
Religious Rightism in the Democratic Party has Consequences
Those of us who write about the Religious Right and related matters often find ourselves wishing that we were wrong. Back in 2011 we......
By Frederick Clarkson (9 comments)
No Moore, Please: Ala. Chief Justice May Be Removed From The Bench
Word broke late Friday night that Roy Moore, chief justice of the Alabama Supreme Court, may be on the verge of losing his job......
By Rob Boston (4 comments)
Road To Nowhere?: Ky. Officials Ramp Up Support For `Ark Park'
Officials in Kentucky have apparently decided that they're willing to endure a large amount of embarrassment if it will bring some mediocre jobs to......
By Rob Boston (6 comments)
Cruz Super-PAC Head Promotes "Biblical" Slavery For Non-Christians
Since 2013 (and with growing interest, especially since Ted Cruz mounted his bid for the presidency), various authors have sought to address Cruz' ties......
By Bruce Wilson (5 comments)
One Simple Question for Ted Cruz
As the 2016 presidential primary season moves into the media savvy states of New York (April 19) and California (June 7) a question is......
By Frank Cocozzelli (8 comments)
"Dominionism" - Correction Please
Correction Sent to Christianity Today, April 11, 2016 Regarding the article: "Stop Calling Ted Cruz a Dominionist: The Christian candidate's faith influences his platform,......
By Chip Berlet (6 comments)
South Carolina School Continues to Dominate Church-State Decisions
Bob Jones University has a rich history.  It was a launching pad for GOP Presidential candidates until George W. Bush apologized for the visit.......
By wilkyjr (4 comments)
Privilege, Not Persecution: It's Time For Fundamentalist Christians To Stop Whining
Over the weekend, a movie called "God's Not Dead 2" opened in theaters around the nation. I haven't seen the film and don't intend......
By Rob Boston (2 comments)
Fifty Catholic Right Leaders Endorse Ted Cruz
The National Catholic Reporter recently reported  that a group of fifty conservative Catholics led by Catholic neocon Robert P. George and former Virginia Attorney......
By Frank Cocozzelli (4 comments)
Viva (Crime-Free) Las Vegas!: More Hooey From David Barton
Ersatz historian and "Christian nation" booster David Barton is at it again. This time he's claiming that the city of Las Vegas cut violent......
By Rob Boston (1 comment)
Pride Goeth: The Arrogance Of The Public School Proselytizers
If you have children, there's a good chance you've worked hard to instill in them the values you hold, whether those values are religious......
By Rob Boston (3 comments)

Alternate economy medical treatment
Dogemperor wrote several times about the alternate economy structure that dominionists have built.  Well, it's actually made the news.  Pretty good article, although it doesn't get into how bad people could be (have been)......
ArchaeoBob (2 comments)
Evidence violence is more common than believed
Think I've been making things up about experiencing Christian Terrorism or exaggerating, or that it was an isolated incident?  I suggest you read this article (linked below in body), which is about our great......
ArchaeoBob (6 comments)
Central Florida Sheriff Preached Sermon in Uniform
If anyone has been following the craziness in Polk County Florida, they know that some really strange and troubling things have happened here.  We've had multiple separation of church and state lawsuits going at......
ArchaeoBob (2 comments)
Demon Mammon?
An anthropologist from outer space might be forgiven for concluding that the god of this world is Mammon. (Or, rather, The Market, as depicted by John McMurtry in his book The Cancer Stage of......
daerie (2 comments)
Anti-Sharia Fever in Texas: This is How It Starts
The mayor of a mid-size Texan city has emerged in recent months as the newest face of Islamophobia. Aligning herself with extremists hostile to Islam, Mayor Beth Van Duyne of Irving, Texas has helped......
JSanford (8 comments)
Evangelicals Seduced By Ayn Rand Worship Crypto-Satanism, Suggest Scholars
[update: also see my closely related stories, "Crypto-Cultists" and "Cranks": The Video Paul Ryan Hoped Would Go Away, and The Paul Ryan/Ayn Rand/Satanism Connection Made Simple] "I give people Ayn Rand with trappings" -......
Bruce Wilson (10 comments)
Ted Cruz Anointed By Pastor Who Says Jesus Opposed Minimum Wage, and Constitution Based on the Bible
In the video below, from a July 19-20th, 2013 pastor's rally at a Marriott Hotel in Des Moines, Iowa, Tea Party potentate Ted Cruz is blessed by religious right leader David Barton, who claims......
Bruce Wilson (3 comments)
Galt and God: Ayn Randians and Christian Rightists Expand Ties
Ayn Rand's followers find themselves sharing a lot of common ground with the Christian Right these days. The Tea Party, with its stress on righteous liberty and a robust form of capitalism, has been......
JSanford (7 comments)
Witchhunts in Africa and the U.S.A.
Nigerian human rights activist Leo Igwe has recently written at least two blog posts about how some African Pentecostal churches are sending missionaries to Europe and the U.S.A. in an attempt to "re-evangelize the......
Diane Vera (2 comments)
Charles Taze Russell and John Hagee
No doubt exists that Texas mega-church Pastor John Hagee would be loathe to be associated with the theology of Pastor C.T. Russell (wrongly credited with founding the Jehovah's Witnesses) but their theological orbits, while......
COinMS (2 comments)
A death among the common people ... imagination.
Or maybe my title would better fit as “Laws, Books, where to find, and the people who trust them.”What a society we've become!The wise ones tell us over and over how the more things......
Arthur Ruger (7 comments)
Deconstructing the Dominionists, Part VI
This is part 6 of a series by guest front pager Mahanoy, originally dated November 15, 2007 which I had to delete and repost for technical reasons. It is referred to in this post,......
Frederick Clarkson (3 comments)
Republican infighting in Mississippi
After a bruising GOP runoff election for U.S. Senator, current MS Senator Thad Cochran has retained his position and will face Travis Childers (Democrat) in the next senate election. The MS GOP is fractured......
COinMS (3 comments)
America's Most Convenient Bank® refuses to serve Christians
Representatives of a well known faith-based charitable organization were refused a New Jersey bank’s notarization service by an atheist employee. After inquiring about the nature of the non-profit organization and the documents requiring......
Jody Lane (6 comments)
John Benefiel takes credit for GOP takeover of Oklahoma
Many of you know that Oklahoma has turned an unrecognizable shade of red in recent years.  Yesterday, one of the leading members of the New Apostolic Reformation all but declared that he was responsible......
Christian Dem in NC (4 comments)

More Diaries...

All trademarks and copyrights on this page are owned by their respective companies. Comments, posts, stories, and all other content are owned by the authors. Everything else 2005 Talk to Action, LLC.