When I told my 2-year-old son, William (who has been spotted, on occasion, sporting a white tutu and a pink handbag), that the Rev. Jerry Falwell dislikes Tinky Winky because he wears purple and is not a positive role model (Feb. 13), William glared at me and in no uncertain terms declared, "Tinky Winky is not a role model; he's a Teletubby!"
When I told my 4-year-old son, Ben, that Falwell disliked Tinky Winky because he wears a tutu and carries a purse, Ben thought for a moment and then zeroed right in on Falwell's problem: "He must be angry because he doesn't have his own tutu and his own purse."
We have an extra tutu if Falwell wants to drop by for a visit; but, unless he can convince William to share, he can't play with the purse.
Regarding Falwell's outing of make-believe character Tinky Winky: Considering by their actions what each represents, I think my child is in much more danger by being exposed to the underlying meanness of Falwell than the underlying kindness of Tinky Winky.
What I find just as appalling as the inane (yet potentially dangerous) pronouncements that spew forth from Falwell is the refusal of less-fanatical, more-enlightened Christians to publicly denounce them. Why is it always left to representatives of the Jews, gays, working mothers and other frequent targets of Falwell's extremist views to defend themselves?
By remaining silent, other Christian leaders imply tacit approval of Falwell's agenda and methodology.