The Common Good
September-October 1997

Fox and the Family

by Sandy Maben, Aaron McCarroll Gallegos | September-October 1997

They say that politics makes strange bedfellows, and
apparently so does the media business.

They say that politics makes strange bedfellows, and apparently so does the media business. Pat Robertson and the Christian Broadcasting Network became partners recently with Rupert Murdoch of Fox Television. Robertson sold International Family Entertainment Inc., the parent company of The Family Channel, to Murdoch for $1.9 billion. The deal also made Robertson a large shareholder in MurdochÆs News Corp., the parent company of Fox that broadcasts the same raunchy programming Robertson often denounces on The 700 Club.

While Murdoch has guaranteed that The 700 Club will continue to be broadcast on The Family Channel (though the show was characterized as an "imperfect fit"), he also has plans to use the station as an outlet for Fox’s programming. Might Married...With Children or Melrose Place, Fox’s quintessential anti-family-values shows, soon be appearing on The Family Channel? We’ll have to wait and see.

Meanwhile, Pat Robertson has announced that the proceeds from the sale of International Family Entertainment Inc. will be used to fund WorldReach, a multimedia evangelistic outreach effort active in Asia, Africa, and Latin America; as well as to provide a large endowment for Regent University, the graduate school he founded 18 years ago. Dr. Terry Lindvall, president of Regent, said that the deal will help the university realize its vision of having a "global impact for Christian thought and action." "We must never forget," Dr. Lindvall said, "to those whom much is given, much is required."

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