I was a kid growing up in the Deep South when we had three main TV networks. It was a different world then, and a different USA.
In retrospect, we baby boomers can look back on those hazy days and be astounded at the difference between our media environment then and the total-immersion we have now.
Back in those sepia-tinged days of 1950’s-’60’s, we had a funky little electric TV box in the living room. In the evenings we’d watch as Huntley/Brinkley, John Daly or Walter Cronkite deliver the news of the day to America.
It was a very fortunate arrangement for a bunch of kids growing up as the first generation in the history of the world to be raised with a boobtube in the living room.
Now we know that the world we grew up in has been changing at warp speed ever since, so that now we have . . .
. . . well, you know.
Somewhere between Rachel Maddow and Rush Limbaugh there’s a widening e-space that carries those two and their loyal followers to two different worlds where never the twain shall meet.
This morning, Erick Erickson was lamenting the negative consequences of our diverging media; he was observing the habits of some friends:
“When all you consume is the media that tells you what you want to hear and all your friends believe the same thing you believe. . .”
Another outcry that I encountered this morning came from Joe Scarborough. In his Washington Post column, Joe lamented:
“ a conservative movement that would . . . identify itself by what it was not, define itself by the enemies it kept and occupy itself with an endless search for a lost America . . .”
Now we wake up to fractious times in our America. Some Texans are muttering about secession in the wake of Mr. Paxton’s pseudo-legal heist not working out in our Supreme Court.
And so now it has come to this: talk of secession.
It reminds me of when I was a kid in Mississippi. The governor, Ross Barnett used to mumble about secession when they were desperately trying to keep James Meredith out of Ole Miss.
And next door in Alabama there was George Wallace with his perpetual racist rant, threatening secession . . . while the good ole boys from Savannah to Susquehanna to Texarkana and on every backroad and MainStreet in between, sported “The South Shall Rise Again” plates on their bumpers.
But why in the hell is all this muck and mire oozing back in the wake of a measley failed presidential heist?
Our media done split all to hell. Everybody’s got their own little nook of opinionating drivel.
I really miss Huntley/Brinkley, Howard K. Smith, Erik Sevareid.
And I miss that howdy-doody world that used to be, and . . .
Walter Cronkite is dead, y’all.
Read ’em and weep.
Where we go from here is anybody’s guess.
But my prayer is congruent with Abe’s at Gettysburg, that “government of the people, by the people and for the people shall not perish from the earth.”
A lot of men and women bled and died for this country and we don’t want to screw it up now, at this late hour.
The world may still be depending on us to help keep this planet from being blown apart apart.
Serious stuff, y’all.