Television, a widely accepted form of media and communication, has spread into the political world with an amazing speed. There are both useful and detrimental aspects to this newfound relationship between television and politics. Sources A and E describe the more useful aspects of television within the political sphere, whereas Sources B and C portray the contrastingly detrimental aspects.
Television has become useful in keeping the public informed as to public issues, political rivalries and of course, the political elections. “One of the great contributions expected of television lay in its presumed capacity to inform and stimulate the political interests of the American electorate,” (Source A), suggests the increased communication between the public and their political system. Citizens are able to receive a quick, presumably reliable source of information they otherwise would usually receive later, with less details, and second-hand. The televised events create “a new, immediate contact with political events” (Source A), which is important as technology allows for greater global and national communication.
Additionally, Source E portrays the importance of public opinion and the sway of television over political leaders for significant events. The significance of television in conjunction with the political leaders themselves are exemplified by the fact that “if Walter Cronkite thought that the war was hopeless, the American people would think so too, and the only thing left was to wind it down” (Source E). The concept that the American people could trust a television host with a similar respect to that of their president made it important to take the opinions of this non-political character into account. By making the war slow down, the government gave a small piece of power to the public, meaning that the government understood that the public must be satisfied for societal order.
Contrarily, the appearance of television within the structure of government and political events makes it difficult to...