Nipplegate has finally ended

Forget about the Obamacare ruling. The Supreme Court did something important this week. It issued its decision that it would not hear the FCC’s appeal on lower court decisions regarding the 2004 exposure of Janet Jackson’s nipple during the Superbowl halftime show.

After eight years, our national nightmare has ended and we, as a people, can move on.


So the takeaway is that occasional nipple slips will not be fined?

No, the exact opposite in fact.

It appears CBS’ argument was that the policy was effectively changed after the event (by a more rigorous enforcement of the existing rules) and then retroactively applied to the network.

The ruling seems to be that the FCC couldn’t change its enforcement standards like this after the fact to apply to something that already happened. But the FCC is able to change its enforcement standards to future events.

So Janet Jackson’s nipple escaped. The FCC can announce it now has a zero-tolerance policy on nipple slips. But it can’t apply it against Jackson. However it can apply it against any nipple slips that happen after their announcement. Chief Justice Roberts essentially said that the new standard is now known and nobody can expect to be protected like CBS was.

But honestly my point wasn’t discussing the legal issues involved. I was just making fun of the fact that the American legal system spend eight years on something this silly.

/obligatory Family Guy:

Oddly, though, the same thing (i.e., a nipple slip) happened to Khloe Kardashian on Fox News about a year ago. Did anyone complain to the FCC?

It might have AIRED, but that doesn’t mean anyone SAW it. /snark

Or maybe most people had already seen it…

You know, whether two specific people can get married is a pretty silly thing for an entire branch of the Federal Government to get worked up over, too.

I think all three of the viewing audience happened to be out of the room at the time.