NBC Nightly News anchor Brian Williams may have gone a little too far in exposing the mindset at the network when he recounted that his boss, NBC News President Steve Capus, once told him about NBC’s commitment to education. According to Williams, Capus said that “It’s okay for a news division to stand for something — in this case, let’s stand for education and improving it in this country.”
Williams, who was speaking at the conclusion of NBC’s second Education Nation on Tuesday and introducing Capus at the time, raised as many questions as he answered with the revelation of Capus’ earlier remarks.
There probably aren’t too many people who would fault NBC for wanting to help find a way to improve the education system in America, but what type of improvement does he want the network to stand for? Does he endorse school choice or charter schools which are popping up all over this country, but which teachers unions generally despise because they see them as a threat to their members’ job security? Or does he endorse the current model of free public education that is plagued by inefficient teaching and apathetic students?
The last time I checked I thought that NBC was supposed to report the news and not editorialize or endorse a particular point of view.
Many Americans may feel that our education system is broken and in need of repair, but that doesn’t mean that the network should be advocating for reform.
Capus apparently feels that Americans need a little more convincing than what can be accomplished through a straight news report on the subject. While many may see this as admirable, given the subject matter, it does raise the question as to whether and when NBC has taken a stand on other issues as well and reported them as news not opinion.