Rep. Ehlers Targeted with Petitions against Big Media

On Wednesday, several community members delivered a petition to area congressional representative Vern Ehlers to persuade him to oppose loosening restrictions on media ownership.

Several Grand Rapids residents delivered several pages of signed petitions on Wednesday to Congressman Vern Ehlers’ office demanding that he support a House Resolution (H.J. Res. 79) that would overturn a ruling by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to allow media companies to control more media outlets.

Last December, the FCC approved sweeping new changes to the United States’ media ownership rules that would open the door for further media consolidation in nearly every community across the country. The FCC voted to lift the 30-year “newspaper/broadcast cross-ownership ban” that prohibits a company from owning a newspaper and a broadcast station in one area.

In March, Reps. Jay Inslee (D-Wash.) and Dave Reichert (R-Wash.) introduced a bipartisan bill, the “Resolution of Disapproval” (H.J.Res. 79) to overturn the FCC’s big giveaway to big media. The Senate already passed its version of this bill in a near-unanimous vote after more than 250,000 people wrote and called their elected officials through a campaign organized by the national media reform group Free Press.

Today’s petition delivery to Congressman Ehlers’ office was facilitated by Free Press and their advocacy group “Stop Big Media” Those who delivered the petitions stated that they were opposed to the FCC decision because “it limits the amount of voices that the public will hear in media.” Another person expressed that further media ownership consolidation means that “less emphasis will be put on local news and that the further downsizing of newsrooms will mean less investigative reporting on important issues like elections, war, the environment, and economic issues.”

Author: mediamouse

Grand Rapids independent media //