Our Land, Shouldn't it have our TV?13 December 2004
During my time living here in residence I have hung out with many people, and I have found that many of them do not seem to understand the privileges they have here. Here can be as small as the university or as large as Canada. It seems that it isn't important that we can do whatever we feel like doing, for the most part. We can watch TV that has barely been censored, watch a multitude of movies or even drink and act stupid, if we so desire. (I know I have written about this before but it just is something that I want to write about.)
Although they likely don't notice almost all the things that we watch on TV are American. Well, they know the things are American, they just don't take this into account. The only time that any discontent is expressed is when the dreaded Canadian content is on TV. For example, I like to watch a little show you might have heard of called Corner Gas, which is thoroughly Canadian and very amusing. However, most people will come into the lounge, see that it is on, make a comment about how stupid it or Saskatchewan is and leave. They do all this without having ever watched the show or even considered watching it. Another example would be almost anything that is playing on CBC. There is one marked exception and that is the Greatest Canadian pitch for Tommy Douglas that was hosted by George Stromboulopoulos. This was poo-pooed by a couple people when I sat down and didn't change the channel off the show, but a few people were swayed by the fact that George was on TV talking. Now, I'm not saying that it is a bad thing that they stayed only for that reason; it's a good thing they stayed.
The part that bugs me is they have very low regard for most things that are Canadian or associated with Canada. Of the programming that is played on our TV, I would venture to guess that 85% or even 95% has not connection to Canada at all, and that 80% was directly made in the USA. This seems like a ridiculously large amount of programming to be consuming without learning anything about where they live or supporting "local" industry. (Beyond advertising money which the stations would get regardless of what was playing.)
Perhaps a good New Year's Resolution for all of us would be to reduce our consumption of American programming. Of course without new TV ideas and pitches to the Canadian stations not watching their programming will only do so much.
Song: Ahead by a Century - The Tragically Hip, Comin' Back Soon - Crash Test Dummies