BOSTON (CBS) — In response to my WBZ Radio commentary Tuesday on the life of John Lennon – who was murdered in New York City 30 years ago tonight – I received the following e-mail from a listener:
“I thought it was interesting that you chose to discuss the anniversary of an event that occurred on December 8 rather than the December 7 anniversary of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor and our entry into World War II, thereby losing an opportunity to highlight an event that has had infinitely more impact on American culture and society than that of a rock star maturing into the role of fatherhood. Your John Lennon segment would have been far more apropos [today], thereby allowing you to focus on a much greater historical occasion which remains a pivotal event in our nations history and that sadly is forgotten by a large segment of adult Americans, and is unknown to an even greater number of high school and college students. Regards, Stephen.”
Well Stephen, thanks for writing. I agree with you that the attack on Pearl Harbor is a more significant historical moment than just about anything I comment on here, and I suspect your observation is correct that too few young people remember the day that will live in infamy. I would point out that WBZ Radio gave significant coverage to the anniversary yesterday, airing comments from veterans and sending a reporter to cover a ceremony marking the date. And I would suggest that it is just as much your responsibility and that of every listener to keep the memory and meaning of that day alive as it is mine or that of the news media in general. In fact, maybe even more so.
I sometimes feel like what we do becomes background noise, a steady hum of stories that don’t necessarily always achieve the impact we hope for. And I would hope that every parent, teacher and authority figure does their share to make sure kids know about our history, and the reasons so many fought and died for our freedom. I’ll remember your email next December 7th. In the meantime, both of us have a full year ahead to find ways to share the lessons of that infamous day.
You can listen to Keller At Large on WBZ News Radio every weekday at 7:55 a.m. and 12:25 p.m. You can also watch Jon on WBZ-TV News.