JOHN DOWNS

Here's why I won't be talking about the Middle East on NewsTalk again

Posted By: John Downs · 7/18/2014 4:28:00 PM

The current situation in Gaza is newsworthy. It's a compelling story. And it could make for a great conversation on NewsTalk 1010. All too often, however, it fails to function on real-time talk radio.

NewsTalk 1010's Ryan Doyle has been in the talk game longer than me. When we worked together I couldn't understand why he was often reluctant to discuss abortion, native affairs and Middle East issues. This week has been a real wake-up call as to why certain topics are simply toxic to civil discourse.

Those texting or calling in to the station are usually not representative of the overall listening audience. These are listeners with something to say, and they want their voices heard. As we've heard this week, some are tightly connected to the conflict, with loved ones in Israel being forced into shelters to escape the shelling from Gaza. Another listener, who identified himself as ...

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