It’s time to ask one of the most pressing questions in the Western hemisphere; does the TV network, Al Jeerza, have a cooking channel?  Or a Comedy Central, or Middle Eastern version of The Brady Bunch?  It seems that everytime I see folks from that region of the world on the news they’re either shouting, shooting, running or bleeding.  What kind of image is that to project?  Mind you the Middle East has more than it’s fair share of commotion over there with a lot to be hashed out politically, religiously and seemingly (and unfortunately)…militarily.   I’m not here to suggest a solution to their problems or to ridicule their fate, as it is…but rather ask…why not change some of your TV programming?  Cripes…would it kill you to have a cute, spunky Middle Eastern version of our own Rachel Ray on your Al Jeerza network, whipping up some delightful little dish like our Chocolate Peanut Butter Scotcharoos?  It’s a safe assumption that there might be less suicide bombings if they were available; “I can’t do the suicide bombing at the market today chief, the wife’s making Chocolate Peanut Butter Scotcharoos and I want to get some before the kids come home from school or I won’t get any.”  The same goes for BBQ ribs.  Let’s say Al Jeerza puts their version of BBQ Pit master “Meathead” Goldwyn on air, extolling the virtues of “smokin’ their hog, low and slow over coals with soaked hickory chunks smokily smoldering the meat to “fallen’ off the bone smoky nirvana goodness” or some other meat that most Middle Easterners can eat.  Could it hurt?  Not likely!  Or maybe they start their day with one of our American tried and true standby’s…donuts.  Call ‘em what you will but everyone loves donuts, long johns, Danishes, crullers, cinnamon twists & caramel rolls! Everyone wants us to understand their culture, how about them trying to understand ours?

Maybe the Middle East countries already get “our” version of TV through satellites, but I doubt that.  Imagine if they got TV Land, National Geographic, Entertainment TV (Oh Charlie Sheen and Lindsey Lohan!  When will you ever learn?) How about a Middle Eastern version of our America’s Funniest Home Video’s?  Every man on the planet can relate to having a kid kick a soccer ball into our crotch, as the world watches and collectively laughs or cringes. Or one of our ESPN channels where they could learn about the American pastime, baseball.  I’ve seen some of those kids throw rocks at tanks.  Just think if they could throw a baseball 80+ miles per hour, and master a split fingered curve ball…they’d be the next Nolan Ryan or Gaylord Perry.  And football, American football…they’d love getting all of that aggression out of their system, get paid for it and get to go home at night and eat Chocolate Peanut Butter Scotcharoos, not a bad deal.  Or has NASCAR ever thought of doing a race over there?  They’d absolutely LOVE it.  For starters, the gas wouldn’t be an issue…let ‘em have all that the driver wants to use.  Secondly…it’d be a huge change of pace from the camel, horse and dune buggy racing that they now enjoy.  If you’re going to do a NASCAR race, can a Monster Truck race be far behind, crushing and mangling school buses.  There’s gotta be an Middle Eastern version of our own Jimmy Johnson or Dick Trickle (seriously…my favorite race car driver name). 

And as long as we’re going down this road, let’s bring in the Country Music Channel.  Has any suicide bomber ever listened to Blue Grass music with its toe-tappin’ rhythm of banjo’s, mandolins, guitars & fiddles?  I can say with almost 99% certainty, “No”, it’s just the kind of music that drives a person away from wanting to blow up themselves and many others.  Give ‘em some Allison Krauss, Fairfield Four and The Peasall Sisters!  Have the first ever Al Jeerza Middle East Blue Grass Festival and you’ll meet some of the nicest people on earth. 

Like I wrote earlier, they’ve got problems over there that cannot be solved by a simple-minded man like myself.  I’m not smart enough to understand the long cultural and historical issues that have plagued that part of the world for centuries.  My opinion is to let folks be who they’re supposed to be, as long as they’re not hurting others. But I think that the aforementioned ideas wouldn’t hurt those folks at all, and it’s gotta start with someone.  Al Jeerza…how about a little programming change? 

Heck… I’ve even got a new slogan for that network “Al Jeerza…putting the jazz back into Jeerza.”

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