Mark Pizzarto, Executive Director of Alabama Public Television, was given the 2011 CEO Award for Non-Profit Businesses by the Birmingham Business Journal. Evidently, Mark was making a pretty good job of keeping Alabama Public TV afloat, despite having his state grant cut by 50% over the past four years in these austere times. It's amazing - the guy kept it going, and even managed to reinstate Capitol Journal, APT's political roundtable.
None of this excellence counts for anything when you cross swords with a Christian Dominionist, though. The sword-crossing seems to originate with Rodney Herring, a chiropractor from Opelika who managed to get himself appointed Commissioner (TEN LONG YEARS) by ex-Governor Bob Riley. When Herring and his ilk are calling the shots, it's not about DOING YOUR JOB well, it's about letting PUBLIC television be used as a Propaganda Machine for the Tea Party and its pet 'historian', David Barton. Who is David Barton?
Barton is a largely self-educated historian whose academic credentials are a Bachelor of Arts degree from Oral Roberts University and an Honorary Doctorate of Letters from Pensacola Christian College.---PFAW
It is unknown how Pizzarto reacted when presented with a request to air the rantings of some Theocracy advocate from Texas, but we can guess. See, Pizzarto knew how to do his job, and that job included working within the bylaws that govern public broadcasting.
And this, my friends, is how Mark Pizzarto and his Chief Financial Officer Pauline Howland wind up being
"ordered to clean out their desks and escorted from the building on Tuesday, and the two executives were not allowed to speak to staff or explain the change on the premises."--Weld for Birmingham
Let the Inquisitions begin! Let the stake-burning commence! Let decent, hardworking people lose their livelihoods simply because they dare to take a stand for the Constitutional separation of Church and State. I don't know about you, but this sort of thing really brings out the Caligula in me.