A rumor that a federal hearing is being held by the FCC to discuss petition number 2493 states that this hearing will limit or remove 20 pastors from broadcasting over the airwaves. Is there any truth to this rumor?
It’s not true. Petition RM-2493 was denied on August 1, 1975.
This particular rumor dates back nearly 40 years, all the way back to 1974, which at the time did somewhat resemble the current rumor. At that time, a petition (RM-2493) was filed which asked the FCC to halt any new licenses to stations licensed to religious organizations until an investigation of their practices was completed. As stated above, petition RM-2493 was denied on August 1, 1975.
James Dobson, mentioned in the rumor as being a combatant against this petition, has publicly denied any involvement, and has proclaimed this to be a hoax. The addition of well-known atheist Madalyn Murray O’Hair to the rumor came later. She was not a sponsor of the 1974 petition.
Let’s take a look at the rumor as seen in 2013:
Pastor Removal from Television
Removal of 20, including Joel Osteen, Joyce Meyer, Charles Stanley, David Jeremiah and other pastors from the airwaves.
An organization has been granted a Federal Hearing on the same subject by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) in Washington, D.C. Their petition, Number 2493, would ultimately pave the way to stop the reading of the gospel of our Lord and Savior, on the airwaves of America. They got 287,000 signatures to back their stand! If this attempt is successful, all Sunday worship services being broadcast on the radio or by television will be stopped..
This group is also campaigning to remove all Christmas programs and Christmas carols from public schools! You, as a Christian, can help!
We are praying for at least 1 million signatures. This would defeat their effort and show that there are many Christians alive, well and concerned about our country. As Christians, we must unite on this.
Please don’t take this lightly. We ignored one lady once and lost prayer in our schools and in offices across the nation. Please stand up for your religious freedom and let your voice be heard.
Together we can make a difference in our country while creating an opportunity for the lost to know the Lord.
Please, if you don’t wish to participate, return this email to whoever sent it to you so they can at least keep this email going or forward it to someone you know who will wish to participate. Dr. Dobson is going on CNBC to urge every Christian to get involved. I hope you will sign and forward to all your family and friends.. Please press forward, CLEAN UP THE MESSAGE, and forward this to everyone you think should read this…..
Now, please sign your name at the bottom (you can only add your name after you have pressed ‘Forward’ or you have copied and pasted the text).
Don’t delete any other names, just go to the next number and type your name. Please do not sign jointly, such as Mr. & Mrs., each person should sign his/her own name. Please defeat this organization and keep the light of our freedom of religion.
You may read one of many variants of this story, but in the end it is just a decades-old rumor with no merit.