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Museum Counts Things, We Question Them

By Karl Klockars in News on Dec 8, 2007 5:47PM

top125_logo_120807.jpgIf you've ever wandered past the ever-under-construction mass of steel and concrete at the corner of State & Kinzie, that's the Museum of Broadcast History, the same group that put out the list of Top 125 American Political Broadcast Moments earlier this week. And, being as that lists are made to be pulled apart, dissected, shredded and argued over, who are we to get in the way of such rich tradition?

There are some entries we might argue: For starters, if the list was solely "important broadcast moments," sure, we'd get September 11 (#2 on the list) being on there. But was the act of being attacked itself the obvious political moment? Or was it the use of 9/11 in the aftermath? This includes #117, the Giuliani press conference in the aftermath that day, as well as the infamous Mission Accomplished speech (#52) and the "We can hear you" speech at Ground Zero (#60) by President Bush.

The Dan Quayle/Murphy Brown moment in time? Okay, definitely political (if not silly). Pretty well placed, low on the list. The Kennedy/Nixon debate? We might bump that up to #1, in terms of its impact on how politics and TV work together. (Oh, and it took place in Chicago, too.) How about the Democratic National Convention of 1968? Sounds about right, ranked below FDR's Pearl Harbor speech (which we listened to yesterday). And should Bill Clinton's "I did not have sexual relations" video (#63) go below Eisenhower's Farewell Address (#34)?

Hopefully, someday the museum will finally open its doors - if it ever does, we'll go point by point with Bruce Dumont. (And an exhibit on Chicago Children's Television would be kickass, by the way.) Until then, we suppose we'll settle for the comment section.