An Update On The Epidemic Of “Cutting” In America & The Bottom Line On R-Rated Movies

New research shows that more and more people are harming themselves by way of cutting.  In fact, the number of girls and women seeking help for cutting has doubled in the last three years.

According to a story from Plugged, some wonder whether increased exposure in the media is making it worse. Clips of people committing acts of self-harm can easily be found on YouTube, and celebrities like Demi Lovato and Angelina Jolie have talked publicly about their struggles with cutting.

Often, these stars go public to help people. But Nancy Gordan, a therapist who specializes in these issues, says when people start talking about triggers and wanting to harm themselves, it can become contagious.

A self-professed cutter named Mary adds, “Subconsciously, every time you look at something, it’s a trigger that makes you want to do it more and more.”

Why does Hollywood continue to make R-rated movies when they tend to do so poorly at the box office?

According to the National Association of Theatre Owners, many Hollywood studios aren’t doing themselves any favors.

They keep making R-rated films when movies with any other rating generally make more money.

Last year, R-rated films averaged $16.8 million per film at the box office.

By contrast, PG-13 rated movies averaged $47.3 million and movies rated PG averaged $43 million.

Even the few G-rated films made last year made an average of $23 million per movie.

Even so, Hollywood continues to crank out R-rated movies—they produced 117 of them last year.  Do you suppose they might have—I don’t know—an agenda???

I’m Bill Maier for Shine.FM.

Listen to today’s audio here.

Shine Family Expert

Could Prime Time TV Shows Soon Become Nastier?

Could primetime TV be getting “nastier?”  It sure looks that way.

According to Fox News, the Federal Communications Commission is proposing changes to its TV content guidelines.  These changes could end longstanding prohibitions against certain kinds of profanity and nudity on broadcast television.

John Conway, CEO of Astonish Media Group predicts that primetime television will start looking more like cable TV in terms of language and content.  He says “I’m sure networks will test limits for ratings as they do now, but I think the American public will keep the worst outrages in check as they do now.”

Dan Isett of the Parents Television Council says “There is an enormous amount of TV content that parents are going to find problematic, offensive or even harmful to their children.”

In other culture-related news, unplugging in a wireless world seems to be impossible for most of us.

According to a story on Plugged, the average smartphone user checks his or her device approximately 150 times a day, which works out to about once every six waking minutes.

That’s even as more and more experts are suggesting that our tight connection to our mobile devices may ultimately prove counterproductive.

Tanya Schevitz, is with Reboot, an organization focused on helping people unplug more often.  She says “It’s like an arms race … everything is an emergency.”

“We have created an expectation in society that people will respond immediately to everything with no delay. It’s unhealthy, and it’s unproductive, and we can’t keep going on like this.”

Something to think about this weekend, particularly on Sunday.  Jeremiah 17:22 reminds us “Do not do any work on the Sabbath, but keep the Sabbath day holy, as I commanded your ancestors.  Oops—guess I better turn off my notifications this Sunday!

I’m Bill Maier for Shine.FM.

Listen to today’s audio here.

Shine Family Expert

Kid Culture: Disney’s Newest Princess Gets A Makeover—And Fans Aren’t Impressed!

Don’t mess with Merida. That’s the message Disney got loud and clear after announcing that the character from Pixar’s film “Brave” would become the their11th official princess.

According to, the honor came with a makeover which included a smaller waist and a bit more cleavage. Also Merida’s wild, untamed hair got a new do and her bow and arrow disappeared completely.

Within days, over 200,000 protesters had registered their complaints about Merida’s makeover at the website “”

Even the film’s co-writer and co-director was upset.  Brenda Chapman, whose daughter reportedly served as one of the inspirations for Merida, complained “I think it’s atrocious what they have done to Merida.”

“When little girls say they like it because it’s more sparkly, that’s all fine and good but, subconsciously, they are soaking in the sexy ‘comehither’ look and the skinny aspect of the new version. It’s horrible!”

Brenda went on to say “Merida was created to break that mold—to give young girls a better, stronger role model, a more attainable role model, something of substance, not just a pretty face that waits around for romance.”

So how did Disney respond?  Well, the new images of Merida magically disappeared online almost as quickly as they had arrived. And Disney now says that Merida’s new look was planned as a “temporary one.”

They issues an online statement that said “We routinely use different art styles with our characters, and this rendition of Merida in her party dress was a special one-time effort to commemorate her coronation.”  Uh…sure.  I buy that.  ;-]

I’m Bill Maier for Shine.FM.

Listen to today’s audio here.

Shine Family Expert

What’s Your Do-Over Day?

It’s Garrett again from the New Shine.FM.  You know that Groundhog Day was Saturday and Punxatawney Phil didn’t see his shadow…so that means an EARLY Spring, right? It also meant that the movie “Groundhog Day” was on too. Do you remember it…and how Bill Murray’s character kept living one day over and over and over…getting a “do-over?” How about you, if there was one day you could “do-over,” what would it be?

Aunt Bethany’s Cat Food Jello

One of my favorite Christmas movies is “Christmas Vacation” and I made a comment to my wife earlier this week that maybe she should make “cat-food jello” for Christmas like Aunt Bethany does in the movie. Guess what I came home to yesterday…….?

Did President Lincoln Really Use Foul Language?

Did Abraham Lincoln use profanity? Did his colleagues cuss at each other? Probably not.

In the new movie “Lincoln,” Steven Spielberg places foul words into the mouths of its historical characters.

James McPherson, a Lincoln biographer and a consultant on the movie, says, “The profanity actually bothered me, especially Lincoln’s use of it. It struck me as completely unlikely—a modern injection into Lincoln’s rhetoric.”

According to the Hollywood Reporter, Mr. McPherson emailed his objections to the screenwriter after reading an early draft, but then found out that the language made it into the movie anyway.

David Barton, who has appeared as an American history expert on Fox News and CNN, say he agrees with McPherson. Barton says: “There are records of [Lincoln] confronting military generals if he heard about them cursing.

“Furthermore, the profanity used by Republican operative William Bilbo was virtually nonexistent in that day and it definitely would not have been used around Lincoln. If Lincoln had heard it, it is certain that he would instantly have delivered a severe rebuke.”

By the way, there is an excellent new book out on Abraham Lincoln’s religious beliefs. It’s called “Lincoln’s Battle With God,” and is written by historian and best-selling author Stephen Mansfield.

I had a chance to talk to Mansfield recently, and he points out that while Lincoln was an atheist as a young man, after suffering several personal crises, he eventually came to a deep faith in Jesus Christ.

If you’d like to learn more about Lincoln’s faith journey, you can go to

I’m Bill Maier for Shine.FM.

CLICK HERE for the audio version of this article.

Christmas Vacation

Hey, It’s Garrett again….and okay……I gotta see Christmas Vacation too! With 7 kids it hits way too close to home!

Christmas Specials

It’s Garrett from Shine Afternoons and ’tis the season for Christmas

What Christmas special do you have to see every year with your family? One for
me is “A Charlie Brown Christmas!”

Last Ounce Of Courage

Have you heard about the new movie that shines a light on the attack on religious freedom in America? According to Plugged, actor and martial arts master Chuck Norris has put his stamp of approval on the film.

The movie is called Last Ounce of Courage, and it deals with a Vietnam War veteran’s struggle to defend religious liberties in America.

Norris says “allowing the use of my ‘Official Seal of Approval’ is the least I can do to support a project so consistent with my core values and life principles.”

In an interview with Fox News, Last Ounce of Courage star Marshall Teague says this about the film’s themes, “It’s about faith, family and freedom. … We’ve had theaters filled with people openly weeping.

“After one screening, a gentleman came up to me and told me he had served in the military, and that he had been waiting 85 years for someone to stand up there and say what I said.”

Teague goes on to say “Movies like this aren’t considered ‘fashionable,’ and people are afraid of being jumped on for taking a strong stand. … In my lifetime, I have never seen more cruelty directed toward people who speak their minds.”

To read more about the film and get a complete review, go to and click on the article for “Last Ounce of Courage.”

And if you want to send a message to the entertainment industry about films with a pro-Christian message, this would be a great weekend to go see the film. Remember, in Hollywood, box office receipts speak very loudly.

I’m Bill Maier for Shine.FM.

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