Sunday, September 30, 2007

Public Broadcasting is in Danger

Both public television and public radio are in danger of severe government cuts and possibly a total cut of funding that, without it, could mean the closure of rural and minority radio stations and public television stations that cannot afford equipment for the government-mandated switch to digital broadcasting, for example.

You might be saying, "So what? I don't watch PBS or listen to any radio station below 92.1 on the FM band, much less AM. Why does it matter? Just raise money in other ways instead of using taxpayers' money to fund something most people don't listen to." Well, it should matter to the 80 million public television viewers and 32 million who listen to public radio. Public broadcasting is one of the few journalistic and artistic outlets that is free from commercial influence (media conglomerates who dictate what can be broadcast or what musical artists can be played) and political influence (Corporation for Public Broadcasting receives two-year advance appropriations, a firewall between public broadcasting's programming and the undue influence of Government).

Now, I'm no politician or expert on the runnings of the government, but the way I see it without this funding, these monies allocated to public broadcasting, it will be all about the money, and nothing else. Those who will suffer the most are small television and radio stations who offer needed public services to small, rural communities. Already the majority of all media and broadcasting is controlled by commercial giants such as Disney or McDonald's, and major record labels dictate to radio stations what musical artists they can play (see Don't Buy It: Get Media Smart ). Isn't the government supposed to protect and ensure our freedom of speech and freedom of the press, especially from itself and the Capitalist economy it promotes?

Please click on the link to the right, or check out Tell Them Public Matters and make your voice known to your senators and congressmen and women, and tell them public broadcasting matters!

1 comment:

Mike said...

I agree. I watch as much PBS as I do the network tripe. And wouldn't have cable or satellite if they gave it to me.