Talk about a crowded TV lineup tonight. Let’s weigh the options: possible fate of the U.S. presidential election vs. fate of the Giants. And then throw in “Monday Night Football.” Or you can just escape into “The Real Housewives of New York City.”
Will there be a fight over the remote at your house? If your household audience is evenly divided between sports and politics, which gets taped for later?
You see, the day the news broke — that Premiere Radio Network (which owns all the shows) would sever its ties with top-rated KMJ and take its shows elsewhere — was the same day Justin Bieber came to Fresno. I was up to my bangs in Bieber Fever. KMJ, Limbaugh, etc. were just an afterthought. Well, until the next morning, when I woke up to way more e-mail responses to the KMJ story than my Bieber story.
Even then I still wasn’t prepared for what awaited me in the office Monday morning. Not just a full voicemail box, but quite a few doozies. I called people back, one by one, trying to help them understand the circumstances — that it wasn’t KMJ’s decision, that it wasn’t a conspiracy to silence conservative viewpoints, that Obama wasn’t behind it all.
Calls kept coming all day and by the time they stopped, I learned that the Bielebers and Limbaugh diehards had a few things in common: Undying fandom, a dose of delusion, regurgitated viewpoints and a knack for losing control of their emotions.
More than a week — and countless conversations — later, a few things stand out to me about the public response to this fiasco:
As you probably heard already, President Obama made his first stop in the Central Valley on Monday, dedicating a memorial to Cesar Chavez in Keene (near Bakersfield). The story in Tuesday’s Bee caught my eye, not only because it was big news, but because of the picture too. It looked like he was about to make out with United Farm Workers of America president Arturo Rodriguez. Right?!? Or am I tripping here?
It seemed like Photoshop gold, so it didn’t take too much convincing to get Bee photog Craig Kohlruss to make this:
You know how they always say Fresno is a good test market? Apparently, the White House agrees. Fresno was one of six pilot cities announced this morning for the Obama administration’s “Strong Cities, Strong Communities” initiative, a federal-local collaboration that aims to boost the economy at the local level by creating jobs, strengthen neighborhoods and develop communities.
Other cities selected include Detroit, New Orleans and Cleveland.
Here’s a little about “Strong Cities, Strong Communities” from the White House blog:
Strong Cities, Strong Communities is a new interagency pilot initiative that aims to strengthen neighborhoods, towns, cities and regions around the country by strengthening the capacity of local governments to develop and execute their economic vision and strategies. Strong Cities, Strong Communities bolsters local governments by providing necessary technical assistance and access to federal agency expertise, and creating new public and private sector partnerships. By leveraging existing assets, providing new resources, and fostering new connections at the local and national level, Strong Cities, Strong Communities will support towns and cities as they develop comprehensive plans for their communities and invest in economic growth and job creation.
What does this mean for Fresno specifically? Again, from the WH blog:
Patriotism is wishing — on the Fourth of July, mind you — that the sitting President of the United Stated DID get assassinated, as was falsely posted on the @FoxNewsPolitics Twitter account by hackers. Stay classy, Fresno!