The following is the transcript of the message I sent to David Madden of the Post at his Twitter account.
I’m reprinting it here because I believe it to be a prime example of how much the Media’s approach has changed in the last 25 years, and also because it will otherwise never “see the light of day.”
It reads as follows:
“I called the Post in 93 regarding an article written by David Broder on Clinton’s scheme for an “Imputed Income Tax.”
I wanted to know where I could find a copy of it. The Washington Post was not readily available where I lived. This was well before internet.
The person who answered the phone was both friendly and helpful.
She informed me that the Orlando Sentinel carried his column. Then, she politely asked if she could put me on hold. Of course I said yes, figuring she needed to take another call.
Less than a minute later someone picked up the line and said, “David Broder.”
I was stunned. I told him I was just interested in finding a way to read his article.
He replied, “What did you want to know?”
For the next 30 minutes we had an in-depth discussion about Clinton’s proposed tax plan.
Eventually it was me who cut the conversation simply by virtue of the fact that I felt guilty for taking up so much of his time.
I thanked him profusely for his detailed explanation and analysis. He assured me it was his pleasure.
Mr. Broder could not have been kinder. He didn’t know me “from a hole in the ground” yet he chose to speak with me, a nobody.
My political persuasion didn’t matter, in fact it was never brought up. He treated me with respect and I responded in kind.
I believe he represented what was best about your Publication.
It’s that approach that’s sorely lacking in the Media today.
Rather than speaking to us, the tendency is to speak at us.
There seems to be a perpetual game of “gotcha” rather than an engagement in civil discourse.
This is certainly a major part of why I, like many others, have lost confidence in the Press.
Food for thought Mr. Madden.
Should he actually respond, I will post it in an update.
However, Dear Readers, I would not hold your breath.
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Excellent insight and reflection. I remember those days when we really could “all agree to disagree” I look forward to hearing you received a reply from Mr. Madden, but I definitely will not be holding my breath. Very interesting read. Thank you!
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Thank you so much my dear friend.