This day and age, America is filled with a fascination and inclination to look at those we have given the name “stars” as people whose lives should be and seem to be transparent to us. Who are they dating? Why did they get a divorce? What drug are they addicted to now? We think we have a right to know every aspect of their being and yet, in no way do we have a personal relationship with them. This sick obsession we have created over celebrities and their lives, that are often filled with loneliness and want of privacy, has caused reputations to be ruined. What does it say about our country and its methods of informational news programming to know that more people recognize Britney Spears than the Vice President Joe Biden? The answer is simple: a majority of America finds entertainment through slander and gossip, not educational, relevant news broadcasts. A great example was displayed in NBC’s Nightly News with Brian Williams on February 6. 2012. While giving the rundown of stories that were going to be addressed that night, an interesting breaking news story was mentioned. John F. Kennedy’s alleged adulterous life was being reported, by Mimi Alford who was nineteen when the affair apparently began. Is this really a story that will educate or better the viewing public? A story that is filled with sadly intriguing details that taint the view of a deceased President of the United States is making headline news on a national news broadcast. Less than a century ago, talk of a nineteen-year-old girl willingly losing her virginity would be inappropriate to talk about period much less go into detail on national television.

These are changing times, I have not forgotten that. Moral standards are becoming a thing of the past, but can our news broadcasts not still be respectable? A family passing the newspaper, sitting silently around a radio, or lounging on the coach watching the nightly news used to not be uncommon. Young and old were concerned about their nation and relied on the nightly news to give them concise, factual information on news pertinent to them and their fellow citizens. We should be expecting the same. NBC’s news is not TMZ or E!, but necessary for us to see those around the world in order to create positive change. Having a story about the bombings in Syria, showing graphic images of horrific wounds and hearing piercing cries of a nation in need of refuge be followed by gossip of a President who has been dead for years is, in a way, disrespectful to those innocent in Syria. All I ask is that factual news and celebrity crushes be kept separate. The craze of Americans and celebrities is not about to cease, but the issue lies in what context is it appropriate. The beauty of the origin of news is its unbiased, relative, and informative insight into the world we live in. It gives us a bird’s eye view of horrors beheld within the gory outcomes of wars, and yet sheds light on the hopefulness of good. The blathering buzz of scandals within a past presidency on nightly news simply insinuates the priorities of Americans which must be refocused in order to reach our potential as a nation.

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