Can Cable Really Be Caring?

Last night Oprah Winfrey launched her new show, Big Give, which was apparently the season’s third biggest debut, but a contest about giving just didn’t sit well with me. People should be able to give and receive without points attached. Oprah herself was barely visible and there just didn’t seem to be anything new that drew me in. Others had similar critiques.

After watching the show and not being very impressed, I decided I was going to create a post about one of my very favourite T.V. shows, The Extreme Home Makeover, hosted by designer, Ty Pennington, which has always held a warm place in my heart. I was going to discuss how I enjoy and appreciate this show because it actually helps people. The media has so much money and I had thought, “finally there is a great show that assists people in need.” I was going to mention how interesting the families are and how amazing it is that each new home is built to personally assist and honor each family.

However, today when I was searching for a link to the Home Makeover website, I was astounded to find this website (written two years ago) that shows an email from the casting director of the show, asking for very specific and rare illnesses, such as Progeria (aka “little old man disease”), Cogenital insensitivity to pain with anhidrosis (only 17 known cases in the US), and multiple children with Down Syndrome. Disillusioned, I realized that I had seen some of these very cases on episodes that I had watched. Is it true that the show is exploiting the families? Is its sole purpose to create a circus to draw viewers? The reality is these shows have other agendas, apart from compassion. As for Oprah’s show that same question was already lurking in the back of my mind.

My final analysis is that these shows are created by humans, who as we know can be both caring and conniving at the same time. Of course the shows want ratings, but on the other hand, some people are also helped out. Putting our faith in anything other than the God of true compassion is where our first mistake lies.

Will I keep watching Oprah’s new show? Probably not. But I can’t help watch a few more episodes of the Extreme Makeover show. I love seeing the finished houses and you have to admit, compared to Oprah, the hosts of that show (naming no names) are quite a bit better looking.

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One Response to “Can Cable Really Be Caring?”

  1. Hampton06 Says:

    We’re on the same page. There’s something wrong about giving in this way. I wrote about the show, as well.

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