The other "educational" networks in the United States are not free. If you don't have cable, you won't get the kind of "learning" these networks provide, and these pay-for networks get a little less educational every year. Prime time on the History Channel is likely to bring you "Pawn Stars" or one of its two spin-offs. The Learning Channel gives us "Here Comes Honey Boo Boo" and "Toddlers and Tiaras". Arts & Entertainment serves up "Storage Wars" and "Hoarders". The Discovery Channel brings us "American Chopper" and "Texas Car Wars".
I'm not saying there's anything wrong with these programs, but can they match the lifelong learning and service to the public that PBS has offered Americans from all walks of life for decades? If Mitt Romney wins the election, he's promised to eliminate public funding for PBS. It will become just another private corporation beholden to its stockholders (and not the American public), depending on commercial revenue and will, in all likelyhood, no longer be free to the public.
Easy things you can do to take a stand and protect PBS:
- Change your Facebook profile picture to that of your favorite Sesame Street character during the rest of the election season. It shows solidarity with PBS in a very non-threatening manner. Here is an album of potential pics you can use. Or find a good one online and use it. Let your friends know why you're doing it!
- "Like" PBS and your local PBS stations on Facebook if you haven't already.
- Contact ALL of your Federal lawmakers at one time. The handy form from Congress.org makes it easy to send your message to your representatives in Washington with just a few clicks. Let them know you support Public Television.
- Write letters to your local newspapers. The US Newspaper List has links to thousands of newspapers across the country.
- Contact the National Media. The "Talking Heads Master Email List" gives you a copy and paste list of dozens of on-air news media personalities
- Talk about it! Tweet about it! Help everyone understand what is at stake if PBS ceases to be a not-for-profit, publicly funded network.
And most importantly, if you want to save Public Broadcasting, DO NOT VOTE FOR MITT ROMNEY!