Sunday Gazette-Mail from Charleston, West Virginia on June 20, 1976 · Page 150
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June 20, 1976

Sunday Gazette-Mail from Charleston, West Virginia · Page 150

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Charleston, West Virginia
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Sunday, June 20, 1976
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Page 150
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Eric Sevareid defends tele vision journalism By Jay Fredericks Television once more is under attack from various sources which claim there is too much violence and/or too much sex and/or too much mediocre programming on the medium. As anyone who has read this column with any regularity must know, I am not one of television's great defenders, but Holey Moley, fans, facts must be faced. Television programs for 18 to 24 hours a day, seven days a week 52 weeks a year, year in and year out. As an unidentified station manager once noted "Hell, there ain't even enough mediocrity to go around." And he's right. .Television cannot be one long, never ending feast for the intellect. If we're lucky, we'll get a few hors d'oeuvres. The problem is, of course, that the more time television is on the air, the more commercials it can sell so there is the natural greedy inclination to stay on just as long as possible. And as audiences grow accustomed to being able to turn on the set at almost any hour of the day or night and get something to look at or listen to, they demand that there be no dead airtime except perhaps between 2 and 7 a.m. It doesn't really matter what's on, Shakespeare or the Three Stooges. Somebody is looking at it. Sunday Solo Recently, CBS's resident thinker, Eric Sevareid, made a speech to the Washington Journalism Center's Conference on the First Amendment and defended his medium against some of the attacks leveled against it. For one thing, he said, stop blaming television for the state of culture in the country. Television doesn't set the cultural level, according to Sevareid. Just the reverse. All television does is give the people what the people want. And the people don't want, not in any great numbers at any rate, anything more challenging than "All In The Family" or Mary Tyler Moore.' "I have seen the test over and over," Sevareid said. "Once we put on an hour of talk with Hugo Black, the first sitting justice of the Supreme Court ever to perform on television in that manner. A fascinating hour with a beautiful mind. NBC ran an hour with Brigette Bardot in opposition. Their audience enormously outnumbered ours." Sevareid said television has not killed the art of conversation ("Non-conversing families were always that way. It has, in fact, stimulated billions of conversations that otherwise would not have oc- ·curred.") and it hasn't destroyed the habit of reading, pointing out that it takes only a mention of a book by Johnny Carson or some other folk hero to cause a run on bookstores the next day. And he pleads television not guilty on the charge of debasing the language. "Until radio and television, tens of millions of people living in sharecropper cabins, in small villages on the plains and in the mountains, in the great city slums, had never heard good English diction in their lives. If anything, this medium has improved the general level of diction." Sevareid complained that he and his fellow toilers in the video journalism field were too critically judged by their peers in the print medium. Why, he wanted to know, "this intense preoccupation of the print press with the broadcast press and its personae?" Sevareid particularly singled out David Halberstam who is now writing a book about CBS and its chairman, William S. Paley, and in doing so he seemed to leave the impression that the network chief ought to be immune from scrutiny. This sounds strange coming from CBS, which fought like a tiger against the same sort of claim of immunity when it was made by others, including Richard M. Nixon. Sevareid argued that the fields of broadcast journalism and print journalism are different. "It is the difference," he said, "between riding inside the hot and bumpy stagecoach and riding shotgun, exposed to all the hailstones and all the pointed -- and poisoned - arrows." Let him tell that to Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein, who were fair riddled with White House shafts for their Watergate print reporting, or to Jack Anderson, narrowly missing attempts to poison him or otherwise dc him in for what he wrote in his column. You kids who have been going to bed under protest before 11:30 p.m. Sundays and thus missing the repeats of "Star Trek" on WSAZ can take heart. Starting in August, I'm told, the "Star Trek" shows also will be shown on Saturday afternoons. . TV WINDOWS ALUMINUM REPLACEMENT ALUMA SASH THERMOPANE SEALED War vet comes home in 'Subject Was Roses' SAVE ON FUEL Any builditiqS grrOteM healing or cooling lo«f i occur though old windows. Algma Saih cuitom mode replacement windowi can iove on air condilionino o«H Ant- ing bill*. Some uien report at much oi 30% QUICKLY 1HSTAUH) Con be readily implied f.omirv side ihc ttruclure ·-- regardleil ol weother. This meani lower labor coiH, greater iQvingi in Jime and money. "FINGER MAN," (1955) **%, 9 a.m., cable channel 10, with Frank Lovejoy and Forrest Tucker. Criminal is released from prison to get the goods on an underworld boss. Fast moving crime melodrama. "DUNGEONS OF HORROR," (1962) *, 1 p.m., Cable channel 10, with Russ Harvey and Helen Hogan. Weak thriller about a couple of castaways trapped by an evil count and made prisoner in the 1870's. "CLUNY BROWN," (1946) *** ] /2, 2 p.m., cable channel 2, with Jennifer Jones and Charles BOYER. Pleasant comedy, superbly acted and directed, about the turbulent career of a plumber's niece and a Czech refugee in England during the war. ' "CLAUDIA, (1943) ***%, 6:30 p.m., cable channel 2, with Dorothy McGuire and Robert Young. If you've never seen Rose Franken's almost classical story of a child bride who grows up, you're in for a treat. "DRAGONWYCK," (1946) **, 10 p.m., cable channel 10, with Gene Tierney and Walter Huston. This film, set about 1850 in a gloomy, mysterious mansion on the Hudson river, is one big bore. "THE SUBJECT WAS ROSES" (1968) **'/ 2 , 11:30 p.m., Frank D. Gilroy's Pulitzer Prize-winning play has some tough going in its transformation to the screen. However, this doesn't-lessen the appeal of the drama about a young man who returns from the Army after WW II and finds his quarrelsome parents still at it. Martin Sheen, as the young man, and Jack Albertson, as the father, re-create their Broadway roles successfully; but Patricia Neal, in the difficult role of the mother, fluctuates between strained theatrics and credibility. GUARANTEED The AI U ,TM Smh slide, n unconditionally guaranteed. MAINTENANCE FREE N? pom,. ing. No Chipping. No Scraping, No Crock - ing. No Peeling. No Warping, No Puttying AND MANY OTHER FEATURES TOO NUMEROUS TO LISTI CALL NOW AND SAVE! ALUMINUM BUILDING PRODUCTS CORP. 2141 MucCORKLEAVE. ST.ALBANS.W.VA. PH. 727-9363 DAY OR KITE FOR PRIVACY AND BEAUTY III Privacy, plus the added rustic charm of wood ore combined in these two styles of fencing. Durable, longlasting, rot-resistant Cypress Wood in a basketweave design or Sfockade style fencing .. either will add that special touch To your outdoor hide-o-way or patio orea. We've just received o good slock of this hard-to-get privacy fencing, but if you plan to install, this type fencing this year we urge you to come in and see us now. McNiel Fence is one of Charleston's oldest and most reliable fencing companies ajnd you can rely on us to furnish only top quality materials, plus guaranteed workmanship, CALL FOR FREE ESTIMATE BANK FINANCING AVAILABLE MtNIEL FENCE CO., INC. 3002 7th Avenue, North Charleston PHOME 744-8051 CALL US FOR AU YOUR HMCIMC HEEDS | ST. ALBANS TOWN FAIR Presents APPALACHIAN GREEN PARKS TROUPE 3 P.M. Wed. June 23rd Children's Concert 8 P.M. Wed. June 23rd Family Concert Admission: $1 Adults; 50 C Studenrs Green Parks Musicians 24th Annual St. Albans Town Fair Official Schedule Tuesday, June 72nd Wednesday, June 23rd Thursday, June 24th Friday, June 25th Saturday, June 26th Sunday, June 27th 6p,m. Official Opening Ceremony 7:30 p.m. Freedom Fighter Fife and Drum Corps 8:30 p.m. Concert--VIPS, Stonewall Jackson High School 10:30 p.m. Fireworks 2-5 p.m. Kids Oay (Reduced Ride Prices) 3 p. m . Appalachian Green Parks Troupe Children's Performance S:30 p.m. Appalachian Green Parks Troupe Concert and Folk Dancing 8:30 p.m. Country Rock Concert-COUNTRY MODS 10:30 p.m. Fireworks 6p.rn. Town Fair Auction 9 a.m.-5 p.m. FloaMarket 2p.rn.-5p.rn. KidtDay 8:30 p.m. Miss Town Fair Pageant and Awards Presentation 9:30 p.m. Rock Concert-Broomsage Forest 1 1 p.m. fireworks 1 p. m . Children's Fun Day Contests . . . Crawford Field Town Fair Site: Route 60 Next to Crawford Field Sponsored by the St. Albans Library Board SHOWTIME, June20. 1976 CHAKI.KSTON. W.VA.jim

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