It baffled me when I watched the Presidential Debate on Wednesday night to actually hear Mitt Romney say, "Sorry Jim, but I'm going to cut funding to all PBS stations." right to Jim Lehr's face.
Sure Romney's been threatening to do this for a while and I'm an avid listener to my local public radio/NPR station, but funding for public broadcasting isn't about keeping the "hippies & liberals" happy. and it's certainly not one of those services that isn't used.
I grew up listening to alot of radio, mostly the local Christian station and they used to run all sorts of interesting and insightful programs. It wasn't just music ALL THE TIME like most radio is these days.
Now that I'm older I've taken a very fond liking to WYSO for much the same reasons, the strong, insightful, well-rounded programing. Chris might think I'm old fashioned for listening to as much radio as I do and probably finds it "hippy-ish", but I look forward to hearing certain shows each week (This American Life, Wait-Wait-Don't Tell Me, The Dear Green Place - for Celtic Music (locally produced), Alpha Rhythms (locally produced), Fresh Air to name a few). I try to support this kind of service because doing so means I can help keep it around for others who might not be able to donate like I can. And that means more people are given the opportunity to learn and discover.
In an age where so much radio and TV is just bland, one sided and boring, public broadcasting keeps the creative spark alive.
If my local PBS station had to rely solely on donations I might lose great shows like Sherlock Holmes, Downton Abbey, Masterpiece Theater, Austin City Limits, Antiques Roadshow, and the BBC News Hour. Heck even NOVA is still around and that program is still interesting.
I won't make this a politcal post so I'll just leave this here for your consideration.