Over 27,000 people turned out in Los Angeles last night to hear Bernie Sanders speak. Apparently, it barely registered a peep in the Southern California mainstream media.
If you’re wondering why I’m devoting so much time and energy to covering and talking about Sanders’ campaign, it’s because the corporate media isn’t.
This has been a long and, technologically speaking, frustrating day (my bank in its “upgrade” to a new website, lost ALL my bill payer data, and I do all my banking online!) and the software I use to stream the show all day won’t allow me to upload any audio. So pardon my terseness when I tell you that I’m now in a shitty mood.
I was in a fine mood this morning, but that all unraveled rather quickly while speaking with Norman Solomon who hadn’t realized that my show is on in the morning (nice way to know who you’re speaking with!), and didn’t understand that, for me, an interview doesn’t mean I ask a question and the guest delivers a 10-minute monologue. If he had bothered to have ever listened to my show, he’d know that I converse with people. We have conversations. Like human beings used to do.
Anyway, he was on because he wrote a piece for Al Jazeera saying that Bernie Sanders was ‘ducking” questions concerning foreign policy and military spending. I read the article right before interviewing Sen. Sanders last week, so I asked him about it and, aside from the fact that the subject doesn’t appear on his website under “Issues”, I was mollified. After all, I understand that this is still a fledgling, under-funded campaign that didn’t come out of the gate with a fully fleshed out website, or anything else for that matter.
Sadly, Mr. Solomon didn’t see it that way.
And, like the Black Lives Matter protesters at Netroots Nation who couldn’t wait to ask Bernie about their concerns face to face in a meeting that was already scheduled with them for after the event they shut down opted, instead, for the spectacle that would get them lots of media attention. It seems to me that answers to their questions were never the goal in the first place.
The same thing with Mr. Solomon, who launched a RootsAction petition to demand that Bernie Sanders talk about military spending. He really could have picked up the phone and voiced his concerns, but that would mean I wouldn’t have invited him on the show today. Perhaps we would all have been better off if I hadn’t.
Tomorrow, cartoonist Ted Rall will tell us about the time he was harassed by the LAPD (yes, white people get harassed and even hurt by cops too), and we’ll get a bit of inspiration that is sorely needed right now, courtesy of the Rev. Dr. William Barber… forward together, not one step back… radio or not.