An episode of the news program “Democracy Now!” will be recorded in Bellevue College Television Studios on Friday, May 6 and will air at 6 a.m., 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. on 91.3 KBCS. The show is hosted by Amy Goodman, a columnist, journalist and investigative reporter who is visiting the Seattle area as a part of the tour for the book she co-wrote with Dennis Moynihan, “The Silenced Majority.” Additionally, Goodman will take part in an informal Q-and-A session from 10:30 to 11:30 a.m. hosted and moderated by Sonya Green, KBCS’s news and public affairs director.
Goodman will be answering questions from students and faculty alike about issues that affect them, from the current presidential election to local issues on campus. “We decided we wanted her to connect with students and alumni,” said David Joseph, KBCS’s student liaison, who is promoting the event.
“Democracy Now!” is a national independent news program that is aired daily and is hosted by Goodman and Juan Gonzalez. They air on PBS and satellite television as well as NPR news radio and community and college radio stations, among others. Their podcasts, among the most popular on the web as well as their videos, can be found on their website. Goodman has covered topics like survivors of the Iraq invasion, Edward Snowden, the war in Afghanistan and the financial collapse of 2008, telling the sides of these stories that may have been overlooked. “By featuring a rich diversity of voices often ignored by the corporate media, ‘Democracy Now!’ presents in-depth information, historical perspectives and substantive public debate on the most pressing issues of the day,” said Green.
Joseph stated that he received many emails from people about Goodman and that “people are excited for her to come on campus.” He also shared his opinion about why “Democracy Now!” and Goodman are so popular. “She has more of an independent platform, so to speak and she’s not necessarily backed by any of these big corporations,” he said, “she is more able to tell it like it is.” He also stated that since other media outlets can compromise on their message, he believes that Goodman’s reports are “closer to the truth.”
Manager of KBCS Steve Ramsey also talked about Goodman’s success. “Amy speaks truth to power and provides consistent access to the microphone by the very voices that are marginalized in the corporate media,” he said. This among many other reasons is why KBCS chose to air “Democracy Now!” in the first place, according to Green. “KBCS decided to broadcast ‘Democracy Now!’ many years ago to fill the void in the Seattle Market,” she said, and went on to say that the program is celebrating 20 years this year and that “KBCS is proud to say we’ve carried the show almost from the beginning.”
Because of Goodman’s approach to news and the fact that she was already going to be in Seattle promoting her book, KBCS “wanted to get her on campus and engaged with the students,” according to Ramsey. He also stated that the corporate media, this year’s election, and student debt are all possible topics for this Q-and-A. “We’re expecting a few hundred people to show up,” said Joseph, who also mentioned overflow rooms are probably going to be necessary.
Joseph stated that he expects there to be some “great dialogue about the current issues we face as a society.” including “some different ways of how to be more proactive” in order to help create change. He also advocated for people to come, saying they will “leave there asking themselves a lot of different questions about their own thinking and issues.” Ramsey also said that he wants people to be able to connect with someone like Goodman and that “Amy Goodman might well say: students should do their research and homework when it comes to elections. Vote. Get active in your own communities. Challenge the status quo. Ask questions of those in power. Democracy isn’t a spectator sport.”