We received some calls and messages on Monday when listeners heard Donald Trump’s full speech to the Detroit Economic Club on our air. Some pointed out that there were some odd moments, such as when our local announcement aired right on top of NPR. Some wondered why we decided to pre-empt Here and Now to carry it. In both cases, at the beginning of the day, we were not aware that NPR intended to preempt the entire noon hour (and beyond) of Here and Now to carry the speech. A communications snafu caused us to miss some of the normally scheduled program cues.
And a third group wondered why we were carrying the speech in the first place, and wondered if we were showing favoritism to Trump. While it’s true that NPR, not we, made this call for Here and Now, the fact is that this was not a campaign rally for Trump. It was billed as a major economic policy address, and we did the same thing yesterday for Hillary Clinton when it was her turn.
And anonymous wrote:
I want to thank you for airing the donald trump speech in Detroit this past Monday. If NPR/WHQR had not broadcast this presentation I would not have searched it out. It is very important to know all sides positions in order to be well informed, especially if you do not agree with them.
Listener Robin sent us a message with concerns about our election coverage in general. Her letter is too long to give in full here, but we’ll have the complete text* in the web version of today’s Friday Feedback. Here’s an excerpt:
I've been patient and open to hearing NPR versions of guests and opinions, but when it gets very very old waiting for the NPR and PBS promoted 'fairness' in political comments. The repeated snipets go on and on for days with one Trump comment, while there are blaring oversights going on with 'poor' Hillary … it's time to skip listening to you for true and fair reporting. You are among the problematic break down of our wonderful country.
Listener Dagmar wrote:
Please get rid of ‘Car Talk’
Listener Diane wrote to George Scheibner:
I thought you would enjoy knowing that I've taken your 7 to 9 programming with me to the Saginaw Bay area of Michigan where I spend my summers aboard my sailboat. Your programming is awesome, and I'm grateful that I can tune in via the Internet. Not only is it great music, but it is a pleasant reminder of home. Best regards, Diane
George asked me to send word to Diane that he will sign on as a deckhand at any time.
Jimmy Reeves wrote:
Although I love “Radio Lab” more than anything else on your excellent station, as far as I’m concerned this week’s “This American Life” just one my personal Pulitzer. Of course, I am not in a position to bestow such an honor in real life, but I have to say that nothing I’ve heard so far in the thirty two years of listening to this station has been better journalism. Taped in a Syrian refugee camps, it brought us real people’s stories, connecting us with amazing, courageous, heroic and just plain funny folks making the best of a dystopian reality none of us could begin to navigate. All of us who live the good life and wonder what we would be like in that terrifying world got to hear how “just like us” these people are, yet made us wonder how we would do, what we would do were we in that world. If only the folks who fear and wish to exclude them from our shores would listen to these stories. Perhaps they’d realize how much we have to gain by bringing them into our communities, to extend our generosity like the Greeks who accepted them and relearn the lesson of love of neighbor.
*Unfortunately, due to a computer glitch, Robin's letter is not available at press time. We will attempt to post it later.