Federal Funding for NPR
It is my opinion that federal funding for NPR should not be decreased [“Editor’s Note,” March 11]. I’m sure the amount of money at issue is miniscule as a portion of the federal budget, yet the effect of eliminating NPR funding could be large. In an era when media conglomerates have gobbled up many of our alternative sources of information, NPR has a more vital role than ever before. We should guarantee our freedom of the press by federal funding rather than pulling the financial rug out from under the stations.
JEFF MURDOCH Edmonds, Wash.
I have been an NPR listener and supporter for more than 20 years. When traveling, I often seek out the local NPR affiliate and would hate to see the smaller markets lose their station due to lack of local funding. It truly has excellent programming, but we must be honest: It is just another entertainment channel on the radio spectrum. It serves no greater public service than other competing stations. If public radio management cannot work out a funding arrangement that allows its smaller stations to continue to broadcast, that is a loss to all of us. Our government is deeply in debt and needs to rein in its spending. It’s time for public radio listeners to step up and fully fund this programming.
JOE SNYDER Powder Springs, Ga.
In this time of media overload, where every conceivable interest is represented on TV or on the Web, there is absolutely no need for the U.S. government to use tax dollars to create radio or TV programming. If there is a market for even the most far-fetched subject, some channel, station, or network will provide it. (Only a matter of time before we have the Left-Handed Insomniac Reality Show.)
JIM BURDICK Rocky Face, Ga.
It’s simple—stop all the federal money. If enough private money (make that enough private interest) can be raised, the entity stays in business. If the money (make that private interest) is not there, the entity goes out of business—just like all the other businesses in this country. There can be no justification for spending hundreds of millions of tax dollars (make that my dollars) on what essentially is a private enterprise.
WALLY SMITH Alexandria, La.
With the huge expansion of outlets in recent years, there is absolutely no justification of subsidies to anyone.
DONALD WAITE Petaluma, Calif.
In our modern day, we do not need NPR anymore. It should be subscription-based for those that want it. On the other side, telling lies on a network is harmful to our society. Individuals should be able to sue those that broadcast an untruth. Freedom of speech was meant to be exercised in the town square for non-commercial purposes, not to excite the uninformed in order to sell more soap or incite a riot.
GEORGE DILL Escondido, Calif.
As I understand it, NPR gets a very small part of their budget from the federal government. Cut them off; the good programs will survive.
NORM DARLING Kissimmee, Fla.