MCCAIN LETTER TO SINCLAIR BROADCAST ON PREEMPTION OF NIGHTLINE
For Immediate Release
Friday, Apr 30, 2004
U.S. Senator John McCain (R-AZ) issued the following letter today to Mr. David Smith, President and CEO of Sinclair Broadcast Group, in response to the preemption of this evening's Nightline program:
I write to strongly protest your decision to instruct Sinclair's ABC affiliates to preempt this evening's Nightline program. I find deeply offensive Sinclair's objection to Nightline's intention to broadcast the names and photographs of Americans who gave their lives in service to our country in Iraq.
I supported the President's decision to go to war in Iraq, and remain a strong supporter of that decision. But every American has a responsibility to understand fully the terrible costs of war and the extraordinary sacrifices it requires of those brave men and women who volunteer to defend the rest of us; lest we ever forget or grow insensitive to how grave a decision it is for our government to order Americans into combat. It is a solemn responsibility of elected officials to accept responsibility for our decision and its consequences, and, with those who disseminate the news, to ensure that Americans are fully informed of those consequences.
There is no valid reason for Sinclair to shirk its responsibility in what I assume is a very misguided attempt to prevent your viewers from completely appreciating the extraordinary sacrifices made on their behalf by Americans serving in Iraq. War is an awful, but sometimes necessary business. Your decision to deny your viewers an opportunity to be reminded of war's terrible costs, in all their heartbreaking detail, is a gross disservice to the public, and to the men and women of the United States Armed Forces. It is, in short, sir, unpatriotic. I hope it meets with the public opprobrium it most certainly deserves.
I talked to a 19 year old kid today(Friday) about registering to vote. In the midst of our conversation we got around to talking about the war. I mentioned the recent allegations of abuse by US soldiers toward the Iraqi prisoners in their custody. His response was "I know! Man ain't it cool? We need to do that shit to all them fucking A rabs!" He thinks Bush is hard core and we need 'more' ass kickers like him.
He made me ashamed to be from Alabama and American.
In all honesty I have to tell you that for the four people (two were college students, two were young men that went to school with my children) I did get registered to vote, I talked to at least 10 or 15 more who felt pretty much the same way he did (all of them male, most of them under the age of 30, more than one was a high school drop out). Fortunately none of them wanted to get 'signed up' just yet(hopefully they won't ever want to). Maybe they thought I was registering them for the draft (several of them mentioned that they had never signed up with selective service). Which would mean they, like Bush, like to talk about being tough, as long as they are not the one's getting shot at. No big surprise there huh?
God help us all if these kind of people take over our country. God help us all.