Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Art Linkletter Passes Away At 97

TV broadcasting pioneer Art Linkletter has passed away at the age 97. He was well loved for several important CBS shows including HOUSE PARTY, PEOPLE ARE FUNNY and KIDS SAY THE DARNEST THINGS, but in later years damaged his reputation with some controversial political crusades.

The Canadian-born host was a fixture for several decades on CBS TV. But his crusade to falsely implicate LSD in his daughter's suicide made his honesty suspect to some fans. His daughter jumped from a sixth story window in 1969, but no drugs were found in her system by toxicology tests. But, that didn't prevent Linkletter from claiming that LSD had somehow caused her death.

Linkletter further compromised his reputation by acting as a celebrity spokesman for STOP(Stand Together Opposing Pornography)a far right wing censorship group founded by religious fundamentalist Dr. Jerry Kirk. Although Kirk is a favorite among the fundamentalist set, he has been condemned by some for using outrageous exaggerations to falsely malalign adult entertainment to raise funds. A mainstream religious minister once attacked Kirk in a PLAYBOY editorial for his outrageous fund-raising tactics and exaggerations. Further, Kirk's organization has falsely used mainstream men's magazines titles that do not fall under obscenity laws to further his fund-raising efforts, which falsely implicates these titles as being illegal or criminal.

Linkletter's reputation has suffered over the years from his phony war effort against drugs and his involvement with Kirk. But, for many years, Linkletter was a popular TV host.


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