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    The Letter D Pulls Out

   LETTER D PULLS SPONSORSHIP FROM SESAME STREET
   Noted Consonant Alienated By Controversial New Gay Muppet
   NEW YORK--A spokesperson for the letter D announced Monday that the
   consonant is withdrawing sponsorship from Sesame Street following a
   Children's Television Workshop announcement that a homosexual muppet
   will soon join the show's cast.
   "The letter D is proud to have brought you many wonderful Sesame
   Street episodes throughout the program's 28-year history," said
   Patricia Willis, public-relations director for D. "But the letter D
   does not condone the sort of morally questionable lifestyles that
   Sesame Street is advocating with the introduction of this new
   character. It can no longer in good conscience associate itself with
   the show." Willis said D's withdrawal is effective immediately, and
   applies to both capital and lower-case versions of the letter.
   The gay muppet, "Bruce," will be introduced on Sesame Street Dec. 23,
   CTW director Leslie Charren said. Thus far, no other sponsors have
   pulled out, though the number seven has requested an advance tape of
   the episode before it makes a decision.
   Many public-television insiders believe D's withdrawal was motivated
   by a desire not to alienate religious conservatives, a section of the
   population that employs the letter frequently.
   "D is for, among other things, demagoguery, dogma and doctrine, words
   crucial to right-wing groups like the Christian Coalition," said Yale
   University political-science professor J. Wright Franklin. "It is
   likely that D felt it could ill afford to offend such a large segment
   of its users."
   While a long-term replacement for D has not yet been secured by Sesame
   Street, the number three will temporarily fill in for it in a number
   of the show's animated shorts. Other pieces will simply skip from C to
   E, with vocalists stretching out C into two syllables to match the
   rhythm of the alphabet song.
   Sesame Street is stung by the sudden departure of its longtime
   supporter. Speaking to reporters, cast member Cookie Monster said: "Me
   disappointed letter D choose to end relationship with Sesame Street
   due to pressure from extremely vocal minority. We accused of endorsing
   deviant lifestyle. Me say homosexuality natural, not immoral.
   Diversity and enrichment. That's good enough for me." ----------------
   Q: How do you find Ronald McDonald on a nude beach?
   A: It's easy, he's the one with the sesame seed buns!



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