Monday, April 22, 2013

In times like these, it's okay to be an American on the air

I went to a seminar about two weeks after 9/11. The topic of patriotism came up, as many stations (including mine) had either put up flags on the set or decorated them in red, white and blue. Some had on-air staff members wear flag pins or ribbons. Our station never received a single complaint. No one had a problem with the show of patriotism.

Well, almost.

One person at the seminar said she found such displays of patriotism "offensive." Most of us couldn't believe anyone could make such a statement.

So here we are again, twelve years later.

Of course, we now have an unwritten "policy" that people in the sports department can wear flag pins, patriotic ties, or whatever. But for some reason it's considered "inappropriate" for someone in the news department to do so, because it might constitute "bias."

Oh, please.

Let me get this straight... the news business has become incredibly biased in the last ten  years, so much so that our trust level has reached that of used car salesmen and lawyers, yet we would appear "biased" if we literally wore our patriotism on our sleeves? How hypocritical is that?

If I were a News Director today I'd be fine with anyone who wanted to wear an American Flag pin. And if any viewer was somehow offended, I'd remind them what country they're living in.

Political correctness has done a ton of damage to this country. We don't need to make it any worse by denying our patriotism.

Because that's one thing that doesn't demand objectivity.


Anonymous said...

I just want to say thank you for your blog. This is a valuable resource for many people in the industry. I really appreciate what you have to say, your insight and opinions. Keep it up!

Randy Tatano said...

Thanks for the kind words. I assume you're not a News Director.

Ken Franklin said...

Any thoughts on A.J. Clemente, especially since he's "making news" for all the wrong reasons? What about news management's handling of the situation?

Randy Tatano said...

Well, I'd rather not pile on the poor guy. Most of us have been caught by an open mike and I wouldn't wish that on anyone... especially on their first day.

As for management, I can't really say what I would have done without knowing the guy. There were a few things I had "zero tolerance" on, one of them being DUI, but an open mike doesn't compare.

Somewhat interesting though, that David Ortiz was applauded for saying the same word.