Letter to Viacom, Inc. 

By Congressman Ed Whitfield


January 17, 2003

Mr. Mel Karmazin
Viacom, Inc.
President & Chief Operating Officer
1515 Broadway
New York, NY 10036

Dear Mr. Karmazin:

As a Member of Congress who represents a predominantly rural constituency in western Kentucky, I am writing to urge you not to proceed with the proposed broadcast of the Real Beverly Hillbillies television show.

Many of my constituents have been in touch with me to express their genuine concern over the manner in which such a program would disparagingly depict rural Americans. I share their concern. During these very challenging economic times, rural Americans have been especially hard hit by high unemployment and dwindling local, state and federal resources to help them provide for the health and well-being of their families. With the possibility of war with Iraq looming, now is not the time to focus on the cultural and social differences which divide our nation. Instead, it is time to join forces as Americans to confront the most serious domestic and international challenges our country has ever encountered.

I appreciate your consideration of my views on this issue, and I would be grateful it you would keep me informed of any action you might take on this matter. 


Ed Whitfield
Member of Congress