Thursday, June 23, 2005

This I Believe

Now is the time to speak your mind for (nearly) all the world to hear.

National Public Radio has revived "This I Believe," a 1950s radio show hosted by Edward R. Murrow. Listeners are to tell about the beliefs they live by, and host Jay Allison will read them on the air.

The goal of each entry is three glorious minutes of air time, free of editorializing or preaching about things the writers do not believe in. The original show is said to have been positive, encouraging and uplifting, and today's version ought be no different.

In his introduction in 1951, Murrow said:

In this brief space, a banker or a butcher, a painter or a social worker... will write about the rules they live by, the things they have found to be the basic values in their lives.

Harry Truman, Helen Keller and Jackie Robinson were contributors to the original show, and Bill Clinton, Drew Barrymore and Muhammad Ali are some of today's participants, according to USA Weekend. The magazine also wrote:

The producers of "This I Believe" have an ambitious goal: to encourage people of different beliefs to listen to one another.

Sounds great. What could be a tenuously lofty goal for most other members of the media, seems attainable for NPR. Listen in to find out. Visit the Web site to find a local station and to submit your own belief.

FYI: An essay from former House Speaker Newt Gingrich is scheduled to be aired Monday, June 27. (This is going to be interesting!)

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