Chris ‘Repman, Jr’ Cody has just arrived home after four months studying history, women and beer at Perth, Australia’s, Murdoch University. Having had the pleasure of his company for the past few nights, I’ve been barraged by his complaints about our nightly broadcast news programs. Chris is particularly enraged by ABC’s World News Tonight, which he thinks should be renamed "ABC’s U.S. News Tonight."
One of the many benefits of studying abroad is the global perspective it provides. While in Australia, Chris routinely watched the TV newscasts and said reports were truly global, and covered events in Malaysia, South Africa, East Timor, Europe, Iraq and elsewhere. It’s truly balanced from a global perspective, he says, and unlike our "world news," doesn’t include any local or national stories. I’ve started calling Chris a "global news snob." But, I have to admit I’m impressed and pleased with his expanded view on life. In fact, I couldn’t believe it when he searched out BBC News on the dial and said it alone would provide him with the objective and global news and information he now likes to receive.
I found my son’s views to be interesting to say the least. They reinforce what many of us already know and what most of the world says about the US: namely, that we’re way too inwardly focused and self-absorbed. It took a 21-year-old kid to open my eyes to just how myopic our "world news" really is. Sadly, until more people like Chris are able to experience what "global news" is really like, we’ll probably keep getting the same old stuff spoon fed by our so-called "world news" networks.