Friday, February 5, 2010

Townsend is the problem, not Tebow

The question followed several softballs tossed to British rocker Pete Townshend ahead of his performance this Sunday at the Super Bowl:

How does he feel about criticism of the NFL's choice of a former British sex offender as its halftime act?

Townshend, co-founder of The Who, seemed prepared for it. He barely skipped a beat when he answered that the criticism saddened him, largely because he's misunderstood.

"I feel like we're on the same side . . . I've been working as an advocate and agent of this kind of area of research and fundraising for over 40 years."

He and the NFL have been skewered by groups like Protect Our Children and Child AbuseWatch, which have sent letters to the NFL saying, "Inviting Townshend to play is a blatant disregard to the values of American families and a slap in the face to victims of child sexual abuse."

The organizations distributed 1,500 leaflets describing Townshend as a sex offender.

In 2003, the 64-year-old rocker was reprimanded by British police and placed on the country's sex offenders' register for five years after he admitted that he paid to view images on a child-porn Web site in 1999.

According to Townshend, it was all in the name of research: in a 2003 statement, he said that while it was wrong for him to visit the site, he did so because he needed information for a campaign he was launching against Internet child porn and for his autobiography. (In the past, he has said he believes he was sexually abused as a child.)

Has anyone ever heard anything about the "campaign he was launching against Internet child porn"? Townsend was "researching" child porn just like O.J. is still looking for "the real killer".

The actual Super Bowl scandal is the appearance of Townsend and The Who, not Tebow doing a 30 second ad with his mom that doesn't even mention the word "abortion".

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