| G. Michael Dobbs
From 1982-1987 I was the afternoon talk show host at Holyoke’s WREB, one of the first stations in this market with an all-talk format.
It was a fascinating job and I went into it with no training and little advice. I soon learned a lot.
I realize a very small percentage of your audience would ever call in. I learned that those who did call in developed political and social persona. For instance, there was a regular caller from Hadley who was nicknamed “the lady from Hadley.” We all knew who she was and we knew there was a very real possibility that she would provoke any of us to kick her off the air. My colleagues at that time were Rob Chimelis and Jonathan Evans.
I learned there were liberals who called and basically seemed to like me and other folks who called because they basically despised me. I received some pretty creative hate mail.
It was clear that for many folks calling into a talk show was therapy while to others it was theater.
I also learned there were a few topics that if unleashed upon the audience would be sure to get a reaction. One of them was Ronald Reagan and his policies as this was during his administration. Another was to report on something from the left – perhaps talk about our then-governor Michael Dukakis. The right-wingers always took that bait.
One topic that never failed to produce calls was women’s reproductive rights and abortion.
Frankly I hated to talk about it, as the subject was so potentially painful, so divisive and so personal.
It was always a very cheap and easy way to blow through an hour of conversation.
Besides all of that, I’m a man.
During one program I hosted a debate between a noted abortion rights advocate and the president of an anti-abortion group. On air they were at each other’s throats and during commercial breaks they were cordial to one another and cracking jokes.
There was an element of theater that I couldn’t accept.
I think, if memory serves me right, that was the last time I presented that topic on my program.
This is not a topic for theater between opponents. This is not a topic to talk about lightly and discussions between people with differing viewpoints never seem to reach any sort of consensus.
For me, protecting a woman’s right to choose is protecting her basic rights. No one says a woman must end a pregnancy. It’s simply providing people with a safe and legal version of a practice that has been part of humanity for many, many years.
The only part of it that is my business is supporting that choice. I am not qualified to advocate for any decision.
The law passed in Alabama was designed to work its way through the justice system for a showdown at the Supreme Court. I understand why it was advanced.
It’s another sign how divided this country is and how far apart we are from one another.
What makes me despair about this country is the hideous time loop in which we appear to be caught. The same issues cycle over and over with elected officials wringing their hands because they don’t want to lose support of their base.
So, it’s acceptable to have more school shootings so no one has to challenge the gun lobby. It’s acceptable for people to have to make choices between medical care and food because no one wants to take on Big Pharma. It’s acceptable to see our infrastructure crumble rather risk the wrath of some voters by having to raise more funds to address it – around and around the debates go with little forward movement.
And in 2019 it’s acceptable to attempt to eliminate a long-established personal choice of reproductive rights because your point of view is more important, more “right” than your neighbor’s beliefs.
Karen Klaczakwrote on 5/24/2019 at 12:12:56 PM
I am a woman, and I am all for women's rights (legitimate rights, that is, such as owning property & voting).
But no woman has the right to kill an innocent human being, even when that human being is in their body (womb).
Science confirms that life begins at conception, as evidenced by ultrasound images.
Therefore, the "fetus" in the mother's womb is alive and human at every point in its development.
As Dr. Seuss' Horton the Elephant said, "A person's a person no matter how small."
As far as women's rights, approximately 50% of the unborn babies who are murdered by their mothers in the womb (or even after birth, as sanctioned by states such as New York & Vermont) are female. They would thus grow up to become women if given the chance to be born. Why is there no respect for these future women's rights - the first being their right to live?
I do actually agree with your article title, "Abortion Issue Another Example of Politicians' Skewed Priorities", because Democrat politicians such as NY Gov. Cuomo want to kill babies in abortion so desperately that they now allow newly-born babies living outside of their mothers' wombs to be killed by "doctors" who are not preserving life but destroying it.
Watch the movie "Unplanned" based on the true story of Abby Johnson who left the abortion industry after realizing the truth of abortion. I guarantee your eyes will be opened to the lies you've swallowed.