Lacey Smith

NBC’s Pledge blunder shows we need to care more about what actually matters

In Uncategorized on June 22, 2011 at 1:18 am

I’ve been struggling with some writer’s block recently and have struggled since last Thursday to come up with something new to write.

Until I came into work yesterday and saw the controversy NBC had lit off.

In case you’ve missed it, NBC aired the U.S. Open over the weekend and sometime during the show they aired a patriotic montage that include the Pledge of Allegiance… or part of it.

On two separate occasions, NBC had edited out the phrase “under God, indivisible” and the second time they also left out “one nation”.

This upset so many people that before the three-hour broadcast was over the anchor issued an apology of sorts. It also, predictably, really ticked off many on the right.

Here is the video (along with the apology that inevitably followed):

I don’t know if it was a left-wing, anti-God agenda-driven statement or if it was simply a complete (and stupid) error in judgement by an out-of-touch news organization. I wouldn’t be surprised either way.

Unfortunately, NBC didn’t explain, and so we can only speculate. They also didn’t really apologize for their actions, the anchor just said he was sorry if anyone was offended and that wasn’t their intention.

Frankly, I don’t understand what NBC was trying to accomplish. I don’t think that a sporting event is patriotic and I their video seems a little strange.

I am disturbed by NBC’s choice to edit the pledge, but the general upset over it is what really caught my attention.

There were clearly enough people who immediately and very vocally shared their displeasure with NBC that the network responded quickly – within the broadcast.

This tells me that there are still things that upset Americans and prompted me to start wondering: where is the outrage on all the other things?

What NBC did in the end doesn’t really hurt anyone. On the issues that do matter, the things that may hurt us, where is our voice?

Where is the anger, the outrage? Why aren’t we speaking? Where are the emails, visits to congress, phone calls, personal contacts, attendance at town-halls and caucuses and primaries?

I think it’s because we are lazy.

It is so much easier to shoot off an upset email to NBC or comment on Facebook or Twitter how displeased you are than it is to really make a difference.

So on the important things we stay silent because it’s too hard.

We are selling our freedoms, our heritage and our futures because we are apathetic.

After watching the outrage over NBC’s Pledge blunder, I was left with the sense that we are penny wise but pound foolish. We care far more about thing that don’t really matter than things that do.

If you were upset at NBC, it’s time to get upset at Congress, at the President, at the Supreme Court and others and then take that upset and turn emotion into action.

There are thousands of insults worse than cutting out five words from the pledge that happen every single day. Where is our outrage on that?

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