Monday, June 20, 2005


Every American who supports public television must join together to fight!

That's the message that New Orleans PBS affiliate WYES started broadcasting this weekend. Stations across the country are asking Americans to stand up for the editorial independence of public broadcasting, and to stop the effort by the House of Representatives to make the deepest cuts to public broadcasting in history:

Public broadcasting needs you to join the fight – our future depends upon it!

The political strength of local public television and radio stations, PBS and NPR lies in the support we receive from communities across the nation. In this time of danger, we need our supporters mobilized.

Please ask your Member of Congress to commit to supporting any amendments or other legislative remedies to provide level funding for all public broadcasting programs.

Take Action Today, by Wednesday, June 22 it could be too late!

The LA Times has a story on the effort by local stations across the country, including remarks by Orange County KOCE President, Mel Rogers, which reflect in spirit the views expressed by station managers around the country:
KOCE says it relies on 17.5% — $1.4 million out of a $8 million budget — from the federal government. Losing that money probably would not shut the station down, but it would affect its ability to provide quality local programming, Rogers said.

"There's a sense of grave concern," he said.

"We would have fewer shows. We would have fewer quality shows. We would have to start worrying about getting more viewers instead of the quality of content. We might as well bring in 'Dukes of Hazzard' reruns instead of 'American Experience' so we can get viewers."

Here's my letter to Rep. Bill Jefferson:
Know that I am extremely angry about the effort by Republicans in the House to slash funding to public broadcasting, and by Republican efforts to interfere with the editorial independence of PBS and NPR by forcing changes in programming that promote a Republican agenda.

I am watching your actions on these issues very carefully, and I expect you to fight hard to defend public broadcasting from partisan interference.

Here's the WYES action page.

Or, go to

I've covered this issue pretty extensively:
House Republicans give Big Bird "la Louisette"


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