ublic Broadcasting is Cultural National Defence

Canada's identity and sovereignty have been achieved by acts of public policy and public determination, based upon shared visions beyond economic or pragmatic considerations. Building a sense of belonging - a sense of community - in our vast and diverse country will continue to require effective instruments to express the national interest by enabling Canadians to learn about each other and to nurture the shared values that are the foundation of a distinctive society. Public broadcasting is cultural national defence.

In essence, the private broadcasters have served as conduits for transmitting American light entertainment programs to the Canadian public, with substitution of Canadian, for American, commercials. This generalization is valid despite the commendable record of private networks in TV news and sports coverage.

The role of the national public broadcaster is to do those things which private broadcasters have demonstrated they will not, or cannot, accomplish.

In essence, this leaves public broadcasting with the role of presenting quality programs that inform Canadians about their country's "facts, fantasies, opinions and trends -- in other words, the shared values that create a distinctive society" on the northern half of this continent.

From the brief to the Federal Task Force on Broadcasting Policy from The Friends of Public Broadcasting 16 Sept. 1985.

This article appeared in the Winter 1986/1987 issue of Sources.

See also:
Arts, Media, Culture articles from Connexions Digest and Library
CBC left-wing? - A piece questioning the CBC's place on the left-right spectrum. (CX5061).
Cuts, Canadian Culture, and the CBC - Canadian drama gives us a sense of community. (CX5213)
A Goal for National Survival: 50% Canadian TV Content - The destruction of the CBC would be the greatest disaster to befall Canada. (CX5212).
Tories are Suffocating the CBC, the Country


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