Rosie O'Donnell knows that cute kids can sell anything. When she hosted her afternoon talk show back in the late 1990s, she put out two books of children's jokes titled "Kids Are Punny." That same principle is at work in her new HBO documentary, titled "A Family Is A Family Is A Family: A Rosie O'Donnell Celebration."
But it's not a celebration. It's an indoctrination. O'Donnell and HBO are pushing gay "marriage equality." A young black girl offers the sales pitch in the show's opening minute: "It doesn't matter if you have one parent. It doesn't matter if you have two moms. It doesn't matter if you have two dads. Just stick with it. A family's a family."
As O'Donnell explained to a reporter during her promotional tour: "It's hard to argue with the voices of innocent children telling the truth about their life and love." She's daring her opponents to try.
The show is quite obviously (and annoyingly) packaged to look like "Sesame Street," with lots of adorable children talking to the camera, musical performances by children and animated segments. Yet HBO actually had to tag the show with an "Adult Content" label. One reason came near the 40-minute show's end, when a parade of cartoon sperm danced in top hats around an egg and sang a Frank Sinatra song. (I'm not kidding.)
There is also a strange cartoon about in vitro fertilization, with O'Donnell singing about how "my science project is me" and even boasting "don't you wish you'd started life in a dish?"
Adoption is promoted, and that is good. Maya, a girl adopted from China, explains that she was born in a country with a one-child policy, and her parents loved her, but they wanted a boy. Maya looks into the camera with a twinkle and says, "I was born. That's why I feel really lucky."
But the real point of the show comes in segments like "Neil & Cole's Moms Get Married." After gay-wedding pictures are displayed as the '60s song "Chapel of Love" plays, Renee and Carrie get "married" in the backyard by a female minister who declares their "marriage" is "100 percent legal, 200 percent lovable."
Next comes "Katie & Jake's Chickens," except this isn't about Katie and Jake. The children talk about how "Daddy and Poppy" adopted them, bought some chickens and now they live on a farm.