(Pat Thurston) When I was a child, the most trusted man in America was a news man – Walter Cronkite.
Today we are awash in fake news and slanted news. More than that we are awash in sensationalized news. It is catering to the most base responses in us – that which will outrage, incense, titillate, scare or sadden rather than that which will inform, education, expose and empower.
Has there been an attempt anywhere, on any network, to provide us straight up news? It doesn’t have to be black and white with no graphics a la Cronkite, but it should have less flash and greater substance; it should be chock full of facts without innuendo; it should cater to no corporate interests and no political interests. Intelligent. Targeting adults in America.
It should also be a daily newscast, perhaps twice daily and be at least one hour. It can be positioned amidst all the nonsense, all the hyperbole, all the glitz and glamour – but it should stand alone, unadulterated and pure in that the network doesn’t touch it and advertising within the program is kept to a bare minimum – if at all.
Would anyone watch it?
I dare say…no. At least not at first. Once established though, once it became clear it was not going away, once it broke stories with non-hysterical truth, I think it would catch fire. Look at all the people today who watch BBC News and RT, hoping to get a glimpse of honest to goodness journalism on television again. This American newscast would be a must see. And its anchors cannot become “stars” but must remain the fourth estate. Eventually others would copy cat.
Would that be a good thing? Would that serve America? Would that justify the freedom of the press protected in the first amendment of our Constitution?