Where Have All the Editors Gone?

From a New York Times Sunday conversation between Norman Lear, the legendary television writer and producer, Seth MacFarlane, a fellow sitcom creator and filmmaker, and Philip Galanes of the Times.

Norman Lear: We have lived with Judeo-Christian ethics for 2,000 years. Look around. It’s horrific and amazing where we are. I would have to be a horse’s ass to think my little shows could change something that all of humanity couldn’t.

Philip Galanes: But wouldn’t honest conversation—

Seth MacFarlane: Not today. If you make a thoughtful statement, or even ask a question about an uncomfortable subject today, you are pounced on by a thousand different media outlets that will eat you for breakfast.

Philip Galanes: Because it’s not P.C.?

Seth MacFarlane: Partially, but it’s more than that. There’s a whole industry that piles on, and it’s a harmful industry because it’s made people resistant to speak their minds. It doesn’t matter what you believe personally if they can fix their mold of what they want you to be.

Norman Lear: America’s biggest export is excess. We are excessive about everything. And we’ve become consumers of excess rather than citizens. Media doesn’t inform so much as it argues, bumper-sticker-style. Context is everything, and we get very little context now. We just get the “Boom!”
Where have all the flowers gone, long time passing?
Where have all the flowers gone, long time ago?
Where have all the flowers gone?
Young girls have picked them everyone.
Oh, when will they ever learn?
Oh, when will they ever learn?
—Pete Seeger

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