Let debate over the media begin

Some of the local newspaper media did a good job of covering the 30th anniversary of the Chinese government's massacre of the democracy demonstrators at Tiananmen Square. The Public Broadcast System also had a segment about it on the "News Hour" on June 4.

What was not surprising to me was the lack of coverage on ABC, CBS and NBC. I cannot remember in the recent past the three major networks saying anything negative about Communist China, concerning Tiananmen Square or anything else.

Former United Kingdom Prime Minister Tony Blair, in an interview on the PBS show, "Firing Line," recently said the UK and U.S. need a "big debate about the media." He went on to say that the media has become "fragmented and partisan."

Anyone who gets only broadcast news, not cable, knows this is true. The major networks and even PBS are clearly in the camp of the left. How often do you ever hear anything but criticism of President Donald Trump?

We know from the Mueller investigation that the Russians tried to influence the 2016 presidential election. I would like to see the same priority given to an investigation of Chinese penetration of the media. Let the debate begin.

The media should be required by law to give both sides of the political debate. Many of us remember the show "Crossfire," in which a liberal, Tom Braden, and a conservative, Pat Buchanan, debated the issues on a regular basis. You don't see that on broadcast TV nowadays.

When you hear the major networks and their surrogates bashing Trump for being against free speech, you have to wonder how they could believe you are stupid enough to swallow their garbage.

Free speech does not exist when a small group dominates the media with the sole objective of brainwashing weak-minded folks to accept their un-American views.

The trouble is most senators and congressmen are terrified of the media. And for the media to be broken up and diversified would bring an avalanche of criticism upon their heads and a quarantine of coverage. They will be exiled to the gulag of nonexistence and the networks' local media outlets in their home states will finish them off.

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The founders' promise of free speech is dying. Someone once said, "I don't agree with a word you said, but I will defend to the death your right to say it." Tony Blair is right that the media are fragmented and partisan. If you don't agree with them, they will try to destroy you.

That is America in 2019.

Gary H. Knight, Holly Hill

Speak out on Calhoun school tax dollars

Please attend the Calhoun County School Board Meeting on Monday, June 17, 2019, at 7:30 p.m. at Sandy Run K-8 School. Recent activity at Calhoun County High School has brought to my attention the need for Calhoun County citizens, taxpayers and voters to be more vigilant over the expenditure of our hard-earned tax dollars.

Voice your opinion during public participation to the elected board members. If you do not wish to speak, attend to show support for those who do speak.

Taxpayers and voters, we must speak out if we do not want our tax money to be used for anything other than education during school hours on school property. I believe that education can and should have elements of fun, but students should always be guided by school employees to make healthy choices.

Parents and employees cannot speak out because of fear of retaliation against their children and jobs. I have shared evidence with the school board about the act of a school employee trying to intimidate and bully me. Public education is an important part of building our community. We must be the voice for the children who want an education. Our children, parents, taxpayers, and voters deserve better than they are receiving.

Melody Inabinet Pedings, St. Matthews

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