NEW YORK - The producer of Friday's one-hour telethon to benefit Hurricane Katrina victims said no special precautions will be taken to edit out political statements — even though rapper Kanye West is on the bill.
Only a standard five- or seven-second delay will be employed to guard against any obscenities, Gallen said. He said he's spoken to all of the musicians and actors who will be appearing on the show about not detracting from the mission.
Of course, one could argue that a timed delay to "guard against" obscenities is pretty much the definition of censorship, but it's a censorship we're all used to, so I guess it's okay. At any rate, I think this is a bad move, because there are innumerable people on the bill who could prove far more problematic than that loose cannon Kanye West. Among the many risks they're taking:
JENNIFER ANISTON. Might call Brad Pitt a philandering cocksucker.
SHERYL CROW. Might stand around naked singing about India or ugly guys in bars or what Lance Armstrong smells like after the Tour de France.
CAMERON DIAZ. Might say that President Bush doesn't care about Latino people, and then remind confused audience that even though she is a pale-skinned blonde, she is allegedly Latino.
ELLEN DEGENERES. Might remind people of her unacceptable sexual preference.
THE DIXIE CHICKS. Might express disapproval of the president; might pose wearing nothing but bodypaint, forcing members of right-wing punditocracy to point out that one of them is fat.
RANDY NEWMAN. Might say something impolitic about short people, rednecks or those who do not love L.A.
JACK NICHOLSON. Might hit on every female member of cast, crew, talent, production, live audience, home audience, press, Nielsen families, potential donors, and hurricane victims.
CHRIS ROCK. No, actually, he's probably pretty safe. He tends to stay away from the racial material.
RAY ROMANO. Might further punish already-suffering Louisianans with bland comedy stylings; might dilute potential donor pool by stubborn insistence that everybody love him.
PAUL SIMON. Might bring out Art Garfunkel.
ROD STEWART. Might reintroduce practice of kicking soccer balls into audience, thus opening producers to innumeral personal injury lawsuits.
NEIL YOUNG. Might talk about model train collection.