Category: CNN

Cafferty read my comment on the air — and I missed it!

Jack Cafferty does several brief commentaries on CNN every afternoon, and at the end of each, invites comments from viewers. About 50 minutes later, he reads some of the comments on the air (presumably those he or his staff like best).

At 4 pm (MDT) today, he was talking about the big oil spill in the Gulf and ended with the question: What should U.S. policy be when it comes to offshore oil drilling?

I dashed off the reply: What should our policy be? No new offshore drilling. Period. Plus, the imposition of new and very stringent standards for the continuing operation of all existing wells.

Although I was logged in as “Pied Type,” I added the signature “Sarah, Denver” because they ask you to say where you’re from and they don’t read weird names like “Pied Type” on the air. (The comments Cafferty read are listed near the top of the page, but if you scroll down through all the comments you’ll also see my comment with the Pied Type login.)

They throw up a graphic with the text of your comment when Cafferty reads it.

The sad part of all this? I was on the phone with my son, not paying attention to the muted TV, when Cafferty read my comment live on national television!

I’m so disappointed. Maybe if I scour the CNN site, I can find a video. Or maybe they’ll provide one if I ask. Or maybe somebody out there was recording it and would sent me a link or something (hint, hint). Maybe it will be on YouTube.

My words were read on national TV and I missed it!!

American terrorism in the 1800s

Roland S. Martin, a black commentator/contributor on CNN, went off the deep end today over Virginia’s declaring a Confederate History Month.

The man was furious that Virginia would declare even a minute’s celebration of Confederate history, much less an entire month. It’s nothing more or less than a celebration of true “American terrorists,” he contended.

(Virginia Gov. Robert McDonnell, a Republican, declared April “Confederate History Month.” He said his intent was to honor Confederate soldiers and boost state tourism; his proclamation made no mention of slavery.)

Interestingly, Don Lemon, also black, was anchoring the segment. He seemed quite matter-of-fact about the Virginia story and startled by Martin’s tirade. Martin is usually pleasant, dignified, and thoughtful, but he was beside himself over Virginia’s celebration of what he continually called “American terrorists,” a modern concept that didn’t even enter the lexicon until relatively recently.

Like it or not, the Civil War happened; it is a part of American history. Not our finest hour as a nation, but we can’t wave a magic wand and make four years disappear. Confederate soldiers, like Union solders, fought bravely for their way of life and what they believed in; Confederate blood was just as red as Yankee blood. Honoring their bravery and sacrifice in a state they fought and died for does not strike me as inappropriate.

Comments like Martin’s are out of place and counterproductive in this day and age. They perpetuate the divide that most Americans have moved beyond. The Civil War, after all, ended in 1865.


Update: Gov. McDonnell has just apologized for omitting slavery from his proclamation and is reportedly amending it.

Video of Martin’s remarks is now posted on YouTube.


Related Pied Type post: I’m not apologizing for something I didn’t do

Austin debate a draw; Obama wins

Tonight’s Democratic presidential debate between Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton struck me as basically a draw, and according to the predictions of the pundits, that means Obama won. That said, and before I allow my thoughts to be polluted by post-debate analyses from those same pundits, a few observations:

  • I expected Clinton to come out swinging; for the most part, she didn’t.
  • She launched her plagiarism allegation again, and again it sounded ridiculous. It gave her a chance to drop in her little x-bomb — “change you can Xerox” — but it sounded way too contrived. Given the opening, Obama noted that Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick was a co-chairman of his campaign and had given him the lines. (An interesting aside: my son called and said most young people under the age of 25 don’t even know the verb “to Xerox.”)
  • A question to Obama about earmarks sounded to me like a mistake by CNN’s John King. Clinton is the one known for having sponsored the most earmarks in the last year, not Obama. (Remember the request for Woodstock memorial funding?) Obama seemed genuinely surprised by the question, and immediately told King he was wrong. A blunt but understandable reaction.
  • Both candidates seemed evasive and tentative when asked about building a border fence. They sounded uncomfortably aware that they were speaking in Texas, with its huge Latino population.
  • Both also waffled when Univision’s Jorge Ramos asked about the U.S. eventually becoming a bilingual nation. They managed to support English as our “unifying” national language without calling it the nation’s “official language.”
  • Clinton struck me as conciliatory in her closing remarks. It was as if she realized Obama is going to get the nomination and that mending fences is now her best approach, particularly if she wants any kind of political future.
  • I disagree with CNN’s Bill Schneider, who thought Clinton got a standing ovation at the end. I think it was simply the customary applause for all the participants at the end of a debate.
  • As expected, Clinton had the more succinct answers while Obama was more long-winded and professorial.
  • I’m sure CNN has a reason for using this particular stage set-up, but I don’t like it. the candates are seated uncomfortably close together, almost within each other’s personal space, and it is awkward for them to look at and address each other. Nor do I need to see the moderators featured just as prominantly as the candidates. Put them back in the shadows in front of the stage and give the candidates some elbow room.

A transcript of the debate is available here.

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