NBC sincerely regrets…

misunderstanding their audience demographic and the new media

During coverage of a golf tournament, NBC put up a patriotic video montage to help them sell ads. The montage featured soldiers raising the flag and school children reciting the pledge of allegiance. They cut out “under God” and later “indivisible.” People got mad about it, so NBC ‘apologized.’

This is less about the main-stream media’s impiety and lack of patriotism and more about simple cluelessness. The bit was long, and someone edited out the parts he thought were less essential. Obviously NBC doesn’t care about God or all that flag-waving stuff; but equally, if the bit had been for a stock car race they would have edited it differently. For a soccer match, they wouldn’t have had the pledge at all, instead substituting an inspiring bit about Nelson Mandela and green energy. NBC has no deeply held convictions about God, Country, or anything, Nelson Mandela, or anything but money.

They left out “indivisible” too, and it wasn’t because they care about states’ rights. Maybe the individual video editor cares about production values, but all the corporation cares about is money. After all, they didn’t cover the US Open in the first place because NBC loves the sport. Some of the individuals do, no doubt. Some of the individual reporters, editors, and technicians are certainly Christian and patriotic Americans, and some are probably American-hating animists. The due fraction had better be, or the diversity hustlers will come calling. But American or not, Christian or not, they’re all careful about what they allow to affect their professional judgement, because they work for NBC, and NBC exists to make money.

NBC isn’t un-Christian or un-American, or Christian or American. NBC is a for-profit publicly held corporation. If they think waving the flag will make them money, they’ll wave the flag.

“‘We began our coverage of this final round just about three hours ago, and when we did it was our intent to begin the coverage of this U.S. Open championship with a feature that captured the patriotism of our national championship being held in our nation’s capital for the third time,’ announcer Dan Hicks told viewers. ‘Regrettably [because we’re getting beat up on Facebook and people are talking about a boycott; our analysts tell us we could actually lose some money over this], a portion of the Pledge of Allegiance that was in that feature was edited out. It was not done to upset anyone [if anything, it was done to avoid upsetting anyone; we don’t want to make anyone uncomfortable; we just want to make money], and we’d like to apologize to those of you who were offended by it [but we can’t really apologize, because that last focus group showed us telling the truth about something like this was a dead loser, so we’re just going to say ‘we apologize’ and hope it all blows over; next time, we’ll be more careful].'” — NBC apologizes for omitting ‘under God’ from Pledge of Allegiance during US Open broadcast, with my interpolated commentary.