Note: I told them that they lost a viewer. I was never really a viewer to begin with. My girlfriend puts this shit on and I happen to be in the other room, where I can hear it.
To: ABC Eyewitness News
From: Keith Malek
Subject: Sade Baderinwa needs to be reprimanded
During last Tuesday’s 5:30 PM broadcast, you reported on how Russians forced a donkey to go parasailing as part of a promotional advertisement for a private beach. You showed a clip of the petrified animal flying above the water, and then the camera went back to Sade Baderinwa in the studio, who said, “That is just not right.” While watching this clip, I wondered, “What kind of depraved human being would find this sort of thing to be funny?” The answer: Sade Baderinwa.
Sure, she criticized the Russian’s behavior, but it was obvious that she was holding back laughter. It’s sad that this even has to be pointed out to you, but everyone over the age of four understands that how you say something has an effect on how the listener perceives the message. And in this case, by the way that Baderinwa told the story, the message is, “To a certain extent, animal cruelty is at least somewhat funny.” It’s not. There is nothing funny about an innocent, defenseless animal soaring hundreds of feet above the earth, screaming in fear for several minutes. It is not funny.
Baderinwa should be reprimanded for her reaction to this clip, but this brings up a larger issue: why was there any reaction at all? I wish that Baderinwa wasn’t a sadistic cunt who finds this sort of thing to be funny, but even if she had appeared to be genuine in condemning the cruelty administered to the donkey, why was any comment being made at all? Why can’t she just read the news, shut her fucking mouth, and let the viewer decide how to interpret it? Of course, Baderinwa isn’t the only one who does this. Every newscaster on every network does the same thing, but this unfortunate trend has only started occurring in recent years. Before then, journalists understood that they had an obligation to be informative, not entertaining, and they understood that framing stories with these little comments was unethical. I know that you are aware of what I’m talking about, but I’ll give you two quick examples anyway.
One time, right before a commercial break, Bill Ritter said, “Coming up on Eyewitness News, find out why a man from Long Island kept his child…on a leash.” The camera then turned to Lee Goldberg, who said, “Is there ever a good reason? Coming up next on the Accuweather Forecast…” First of all, maybe the guy did have a good reason for keeping his child on a leash. When I’m trying to enjoy a meal in a nice restaurant and a child is running around instead of sitting at his table quietly, I often wish that the little fuck trophy was on a leash. Actually, it’s at times like that that I wish I owned a gun, but that’s a topic for a different e-mail. My point is this–it doesn’t matter whether or not the father had a good reason to keep his little bundle of carbon on a leash–what matters is that Lee Goldberg is a weather man who shouldn’t be speaking unless he’s talking about the weather. I don’t need Lee Goldberg to help me “stay tuned” after the commercial break; any time I hear that a child is being mistreated, I can assure you that I’m a happy guy and that you have my complete and undivided attention. If anything, since weather (like sports) isn’t actual news, I won’t change the channel until the weather report comes on.
The father who kept his child on a leash was a minor story. However, a major story was that Rudy Giuliani was considering a Senate run. After Bill Ritter reported on this story, he turned to Liz Cho and said, “Well, that would certainly be great for the state of New York, wouldn’t it?” EX-MOTHERFUCKING-CUSE ME? A study was done back in 1984 which revealed that in the months and weeks prior to the presidential election, whenever Peter Jennings of ABC covered stories on Ronald Reagan, he did so with a very slight smile on his face. What was the result? The overwhelming majority of ABC viewers voted for Reagan. Jennings denied these claims, but a study done in 1988 revealed that Jennings did the same thing with George H.W. Bush, and that ABC viewers did indeed overwhelmingly vote for Bush over Dukakis.
The obvious difference between 1984 and 2010 is that when people noticed what Jennings did (unfortunately, it wasn’t until after the election that they noticed) they had a problem with it. That being said, how did we get from there, to having a newscaster like Bill Ritter fucking ENDORSE a candidate? If I wanted to hear a bunch of overpaid, uneducated retards give me their opinions on current events, I would watch Fox News.
There’s an important difference between the story of the parasailing donkey and the other two stories that I mentioned. The difference is that one story is about an animal, and animals, unlike people, have value. If your newscasters want to make their little bullshit comments after stories involving people, that’s one thing. But if they’re going to make comments after stories involving animal cruelty–and those comments are practically an endorsement of animal cruelty–you’re going to lose viewers.
You have already lost this one.
PS. One more thing. Liz Cho is too hot to be a newscaster. When she tells me about a fire in the Bronx and I begin to masturbate, it makes me feel like a sereal killer. Please fire her.
August 3, 2010