Politics has become more partisan than ever. The Trump era has left the country deeply divided and, unfortunately, that is reflected in our news coverage. Gone are the days when you could tune in to watch Cronkite and know that the information you were receiving was factual and unbiased. Today, you really have to search to find a news source that you can count on to be free of political bias. Most people choose to get their news from sources that validate their individual belief systems rather than challenge it. It may be difficult to heal the divide in the country if people don't step outside of their boxes and start listening to points of view that counter theirs. Try tuning in to a news source you don't typically listen to now and then. It might change your perspective on some issues, and at the very least it'll give you some insight into how the other side is thinking.
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The Rachel Maddow Show
You can view The Rachel Maddow Show on MSNBC, and if you can't catch it there the show is available on-demand in an audio format through the Rachel Maddow podcast. The show, like most shows on MSNBC, is definitely left-leaning, with many on the right accusing it of being downright leftist propaganda. The titular host is a 40 something, openly gay Rhodes scholar who possesses an inarguable intellect and snarky sense of humor. A self-described politics geek, Maddow's show typically covers several issues while going into deep detail on at least one. She excels at research and finding fascinating and often obscure connections between disparate pieces of information. Maddow's show has been in contention for the most-watched cable news show for a few years now and has a devoted following. Whether you agree with her political take on things or not, her reporting is factual and detailed and her disarming persona makes her pleasant to watch.
Tucker Carlson Tonight
Carlson's program is part of Fox News's nightly lineup and has seen a dramatic increase in viewership over the past year or so. The show has even nudged out Hannity in the ratings on occasion and looks to be stabilizing its popularity. Like most Fox News programs, Carlson's show has a definitive conservative bent, and many on the left feel the show veers regularly into right-wing extremism and conspiracy theory. Carlson is a talented news writer who has won awards and has a career full of comebacks that is worthy of respect. His interview style is aggressive and akin to debate making it difficult for those being questioned to actually provide any answers. Millions of admiring viewers tune in to Tucker Carlson Tonight on any given weeknight and for many he has become the voice of the conservative party.
The PBS NewsHour
PBS doesn't come close to touching MSNBC or FOX when it comes to ratings, but multiple polls have shown that they are one of the most trusted sources for news. The viewership for their flagship news show, The PBS NewsHour, is demographically refreshing with a quarter of watchers identifying as conservative, a third as liberal and the rest as independent or centrist. That alone is an indication of the kind of fact-based and non-partisan coverage this storied program is known for. This show has been around - under various titles - since the 1970s. It is a one-hour show on weekdays and 30 minutes on weekends that runs without commercial interruption. It is not as entertaining as the partisan shows. There is significantly less shouting and considerably more in-depth, fact-based reporting. Even if you can't bring yourself to go so far as to watch Maddow or Carlson, this is a show that anyone should be able to tune in to and gain insight into world events away from the theatrics and bias of other networks. Although there will always be some division between political parties, the bunker mentality that exists today must change if the country is to flourish. Tuning in to a news show with competing views, or at the very least with more centrist views, can be a fairly painless way to do your part in closing the gap.