Monday, February 16, 2009
Stop Crying Over The Fairness Doctrine by Akindele Akinyemi
Conservatives are crying over something called a Fairness Doctrine. This was a policy of the United States Federal Communications Commission (FCC) that required radio stations to present controversial issues of public importance and to do so in a manner that was honest, equitable and balanced.
On February 4, 2009, Senator Debbie Stabenow (D-Michigan) told radio host and World Daily Net columnist Bill Press it's time to pass a standard. She feels that it's time to be bringing accountability to the airwaves. When Press asked if she would seek Senate hearings on such accountability in 2009, she replied, "I have already had some discussions with colleagues and, you know, I feel like that's gonna happen."
A week later, on February 11, 2009, Senator Tom Harkin (D-Iowa) told Press, "..we gotta get the Fairness Doctrine back in law again." Later in response to Press's assertion that "...they are just shutting down progressive talk from one city after another," Senator Harkin responded, "Exactly, and that's why we need the fair — that's why we need the Fairness Doctrine back."
My thing is this. If Democrats and liberals want a Fairness Doctrine back then we should prepare ourselves academically and educationally to compete. That is why conservatives need to launch a "Fairness Doctrine" in K-16 education.
When I first started reading about the Fairness Doctrine and how conservatives were crying foul over the fact that people like Rush Limbaugh and Sean Hannity would get bumped off the air for a liberal point of view my thing was how come we do not go back to school, get our Masters and other degrees necessary to go into the classrooms and TEACH education the way it should be taught? That's the problem with our conservative base....we are always on the defense when we should HAVE BEEN aggressively attacking K-16 education, especially at the high education level. There is no reason why over 90% of college indoctrination should be based on liberal thought.
How in the world have conservatives abandoned academia in terms of economics, social sciences and get this..electives? We have abandoned community colleges and universities. Now we want to cry foul when it comes to liberal education and the Fairness Doctrine. Urban conservatives are ahead of the game because we podcast, we blog, we broadcast through YouTube and we have satellite/Internet radio. We are STILL going to free the minds of the trapped because it is our duty as a party to do so. The same way the GOP help abolish slavery in the 1860s will be the same party to abolish ignorance in 2009. For those of us who are in the GOP because of opportunism, racism or sexism need to be shown the door. There is no need for you here in our party. This is a party of action not a party of being on the defense all the time.
W.E.B DuBois called for the talented tenth to lead us to prosperity. Booker T. Washington's belief was that African-Americans should “concentrate all their energies on education, and accumulation of wealth. While both had a different approach to solving issues the fact that BOTH stressed the importance of education is critical for any movement. You cannot become so paralyzed on JUST conservative talk. All district, county and precinct delegates should be engaged in study groups, speaking on campuses, and breaking down the walls of hate and racism.
When I study the works of Russell Kirk, Carter G. Woodson, Milton Friedman or watch how freedom fighters such as Geert Wilders or Ayaan Hirsi Ali are persecuted for their beliefs it shows us that our party has a long way to go. This is why I support urban conservatism because it is not just domestic but international. The Fairness Doctrine has nothing to do with getting our message out because when you create a grassroots network we use the power of our feet to get our message out not just turning on Rush, Mark Levin or Laura Ingraham. We have to get back to studying, researching and stop making excuses for not going to further our academic careers.
You have to create a balance to get a holistic approach to the problem. The problem is the LACK of conservative thought and intellectual firepower on our college campuses and universities. There should be no reason why we are not teaching OUR values at the University of Michigan or Central Michigan University. We have College Republicans on these campuses but NO ONE in faculty helping the College Republicans get their message out in the classrooms.
Urban conservatives should be prepared to hit the colleges and universities. Not just outreach and grassroots operations but ACADEMIC operations. I find it interesting that the GOP does not have an educational vice-chair or chairman. Urban campuses like Wayne State University in Detroit, Eastern Michigan University in Ypsilanti or Oakland University in Rochester Hills are urban campuses (Oakland is right down the street from Pontiac). Another campus is Grand Valley State University (sits in-between Grand Rapids and Muskegon). Urban conservatives should engage in urban and regional planning, GIS technology, economics and public policy issues. There is no way we can transform and recruit new students without stressing the need for education from an urban conservative perspective. This can be done at schools like Baker College and Wayne County Community College (when they are hiring).
Urban conservatives should be studying BOTH Africana/African-American History to even conduct a half decent dialogue with those in the NAACP and others who are liberal. If we know our history we will know our future. There is NO REASON why Africana/African-American Studies is NOT taught with a balanced viewpoint in K-16 education. There is NO REASON why our children are NOT exposed to historical documents such as Nina May's Emancipation, Revelation, Revolution.
If liberals want the Fairness Doctrine on the airwaves then we should push for our own Fairness Doctrine in academia. If conservatives want to win back Michigan then we should make K-16 education our PRIORITY issue in 2010. The GOP is a party of freedom fighters and its time to fight not whine.