If a nation expects to be both ignorant and free, it longs for a civilization that never was and never will be,” Thomas Jefferson
In what will prove to be a most thought provoking talk on the state of the U.S. and it’s “news media” and how America’s news media has managed to confuse people more than truly inform them is being held at Lincoln City’s Driftwood Public Library, Sunday, September 18th. Speaker Jeff Golden, part of the “Oregon Humanities Conversation Project,” will be talking about whether the American news media is still capable of furthering the health of our democracy. Golden will pose the question “If a nation expects to be ignorant and free, it expects to experience what never was and never will be.” A new release from the library poses the thought, “Virtually everyone agrees that the news media’s informational role is essential to effective self-government, but contemporary mass news media rarely offers what we need to function as thoughtful and competent citizens.”
Here’s the rest of their release on what will prove a mind-widening event at the library in Lincoln City.
Driftwood Public Library and The American Association of University Women (AAUW) will each be sponsoring a presentation by scholar Jeff Golden in honor of Constitution Week in September.
On Sunday, September 18th at 3:00 p.m., the library will host Mr. Golden’s presentation “What Never Was and Never Will Be: Can Our Media Serve Our Democracy”. Thomas Jefferson warned his countrymen, “If a nation expects to be ignorant and free in a state of civilization it expects what never was and never will be.” Virtually everyone agrees that the media’s informational role is essential to effective self-government but that mass media news rarely offers what we need to function as thoughtful and competent citizens. Beyond that, agreement often breaks down. Jeff Golden asks us to consider the following: What are the primary failings of contemporary mass media news? What is our responsibility and what are our opportunities to improve prevailing conditions? Do our viewpoints have enough common ground to point to possibilities for effective activism? If we are to heed Jefferson’s warning, how do we focus our time and energies?
The problem with this country, according to some disenchanted Americans, “is that there are no real leaders anymore.” What we most need, they say, are people of our Founding Fathers’ caliber, or another Abe Lincoln or Franklin Roosevelt to step forward with the courage and wisdom necessary to solve our daunting problems. An opposing point of view holds that in a state or country with free and open elections, people get the government they deserve. Do the failures of modern governance and politics have more to do with a crisis of leadership or a crisis of citizenship? Join AAUW as they host Golden’s conversation “Of the People or For the People: Getting the Government We Deserve” on Monday, September 19th at 6:30 p.m.
Both presentations are part of Oregon Humanities’ “Conversation Project: A New Chautaqua”, a statewide program offering Oregon nonprofits free programs that engage community members in thoughtful, challenging conversations about ideas critical to our daily lives and our state’s future. Conversations are facilitated by some of Oregon’s leading humanities scholars. Both will take place in the Library’s Community Room. Driftwood Public Library is located on the second floor of the Lincoln City Hall building at 801 SW Highway 101 (next to Price and Pride). Any questions should be directed to Ken Hobson. His phone number is 541-996-1242 or he can be reached by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org