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Last week, on the same day that CREDO joined with MoveOn and Free Press to bring Congress over a million signatures in support of public broadcasting (including yours), House Republicans passed an emergency measure to defund NPR.
Millions of Americans are hurting. The foreclosure crisis shows no sign of abating any time soon. People can't find jobs. But the emergency for Republicans in the House, the one that demanded extreme measures, is the fact that a minuscule amount of the federal budget might go to funding public broadcasting.
Attacks like this on NPR and PBS aren't going to stop any time soon. So we need to build a firewall in the Senate to make sure they never make it into law.
House Republicans want to destroy public media, and fortunately we've been able to stop them before in the Senate.
Last week's "emergency" measure comes on the heels of an earlier attempt to zero out all funding for the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB), the nonprofit responsible for funding public media including NPR, PBS, Pacifica and more.
But we cannot complacently assume that House Republicans and their allies in the Senate won't succeed.
Cuts to public media are incredibly unpopular. But time and again we've seen deeply unpopular bills pass through the House and the Senate as part of compromises around must-pass legislation. There are any number of opportunities for public media funding to be a casualty of one of these grand compromises.
So now is the time to speak out.
Whatever the position of your senators, they both need to hear from you. We need to make sure those who support cuts to public media understand there's a political price to pay for doing so. And those who are already on our side need to see that their constituents want them to actively champion the issue.
Public media is one of the last bulwarks against the corporate media, where the combination of consolidation and profit motive has long since shifted the focus to infotainment rather than substantive news. In many rural and less affluent communities, broadcasters rely on federal funding to provide the only available high-quality news and public affairs programming.
Without public media, corporate media monopolies would increase their already large control of what we see on television, hear on the radio or read in the newspaper.
This outcome should deeply worry all of us. The increased accumulation and consolidation of corporate power is a threat to our democracy. And nowhere is this more evident than in our media.
At a time when media consolidation is shrinking the number of perspectives we have access to over the airwaves and when newsrooms are shrinking, we need more diversity in our media not less. And we simply cannot afford to lose what public media brings to the table.
Win or lose, this battle will be decided in the Senate. Make sure you speak out before it's too late.
Thank you for standing up for NPR, PBS and public service media.
Matt Lockshin, Campaign Manager
CREDO Action from Working Assets
Thanks for calling! Can you ask some friends to call the Senate as well?If you are on Facebook, click here to post the petition to your Wall.
If you have a Twitter account, click here to automatically tweet:
TAKE ACTION: Don't let the Senate pull the plug on NPR & PBS http://bit.ly/iaz7HJ
You can also send the following e-mail to your friends and family.
Spreading the word is critical, but please only pass this message along to those who know you -- spam hurts our campaign.
Thanks for all you do.
--The CREDO Action Team