Fox News makes fair & balanced attack on SpongeBob

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SpongeBob SquarePants

Sponge­Bob SquarePants

Sponge­Bob SquarePants may be a rad­i­cal who’s more green than yel­low, the hosts of Fox News Channel’s Fox & Friends sug­gested in a recent broadcast.

The United States Depart­ment of Edu­ca­tion has joined with Nick­elodeon to use Sponge­Bob SquarePants to teach chil­dren about global warm­ing. But the Fox News folks are wor­ried that the Nick hero is being duped.

On July 20, the depart­ment held an event in Wash­ing­ton, D.C. called “Let’s Read! Let’s Move!,” fea­tur­ing author Maya Soetoro-Ng (Pres­i­dent Barack Obama’s half-sister), as well as NFL line­backer Chris Draft read­ing to stu­dents and encour­ag­ing them to exercise.

Accord­ing to con­ser­v­a­tive news site CNSNews.com, the stu­dents received a book called Sponge­Bob Goes Green! An Earth-Friendly Adven­ture.

Fox played a clip from what it iden­ti­fied as a Sponge­Bob SquarePants car­toon shown to the stu­dents. It fea­tures Mr. Krabs say­ing, “Thanks to global warm­ing, the tem­per­a­ture will soon go through the roof, and we’ll have an end­less summer.”

The gov­ern­ment agency showed kids this car­toon and handed out books that blame man for global warm­ing, but they did not tell kids that that is actu­ally a dis­puted fact. Oops,” com­plained Fox & Friends host Gretchen Carlson.

Sponge­Bob is talk­ing a lot about global warm­ing, and he’s only look­ing at it from one point of view,” Carl­son continued.

Added Fox & Friends’ Steve Doocy: “What hap­pened was, the Depart­ment of Edu­ca­tion invited a bunch of D.C. kids in and they had this fes­tiv­ity, and they handed out these par­tic­u­lar Nick­elodeon books where, clearly, Nick­elodeon is push­ing a global warm­ing agenda.

Clearly Nick­elodeon is push­ing a global warm­ing agenda, and while there’s no dis­put­ing the fact that the earth is get­ting a lit­tle warmer, the big ques­tion is, is it man-made, or is it just one of those gigan­tic cli­mac­tic phases that we’re going [through]?… For a while we’re cold and then we get warmer and then we get colder and warmer, which one is it? There’s sci­ence on both sides. There are a lot of sci­en­tists who say, ‘It’s this,’ oth­ers say, ‘It’s that.’”

Global warm­ing is “unproven sci­ence,” said Dave Briggs, also of Fox. “This is a pub­lic edu­ca­tion sys­tem that we all pay our tax dol­lars for, and the Sponge­Bob book says that it’s a man-made prob­lem that requires human intervention.”

Carl­son did admit that for her, Sponge­Bob SquarePants is “hard to fol­low sometimes.”

How­ever, Tim Tuten of the Depart­ment of Edu­ca­tion said that no Sponge­Bob SquarePants car­toons were shown dur­ing the event.

We’ve never shown any videos ever, so I have no idea where that is com­ing from,” he said. Par­tic­i­pants were per­mit­ted to choose one of dozens of diverse books to take home with them, and the Sponge­Bob book was one of those, he continued.

The Depart­ment of Edu­ca­tion doesn’t gen­er­ally pro­vide the books for spe­cial events, but such cor­po­rate part­ners as Tar­get, Nick­elodeon and United Way make them avail­able to kids, said Justin Hamil­ton, the department’s press secretary.

The kids get to pick what­ever books they’re inter­ested in,” he said. “We’re very happy that cor­po­rate spon­sors have made good books avail­able for kids to select and take home.”

Con­ser­v­a­tives also saw red over the yel­low sponge in 2005. At that time, Focus on the Family’s Paul Batura hinted that a video fea­tur­ing Sponge­Bob singing “We are Fam­ily” along­side peo­ple, Mup­pets and other car­toon char­ac­ters was “an insid­i­ous means by which the orga­ni­za­tion [spon­sor­ing the video] is manip­u­lat­ing and poten­tially brain­wash­ing kids.”

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