Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Don Elkins leaving NW AR

A word about the departure of Don Elkins for greener pastures on the east coast. Don arrived in this market to anchor the new newscast on the NBC affiliate in town and he brought with him an air of dignity in a market offering Craig Cannon and Bur Edson as anchors for the ABC and CBS affiliates. I was really eager to see if another competitor could shake up the broadcast news in the area. I have remained as a normal watcher of the KNWA newscast despite the decidedly unprofessional turn witnessed of late with the sports jock takeover of practically the entire newscast. Granted, KNWA never did shake up the market, but Don Elkins did manage to shake up the way NW AR was represented politically in the blogosphere. The blogosphere in the area still predominately is polluted by right wing hacks and wackos, but Arkansas Tonight was a beacon in the stultifying "conservative" worldview shared by a majority of voters in the area as Holt's embarassingly large margin of victory proves for Benton County especially.

Elkins was unafraid to label himself moderate and looking at his links, he's harbored a more liberal viewpoint as well on his Arkansas Tonight radio show and blog. NW AR needed that kind of fortification for those of us who are now full-fledged Democrats who previously had voted for Republican candidates until 1992, when I voted third party until the 2000 election when I latched on to Gore's campaign and decided to call myself a Democrat and campaign for Democratic causes from that cycle forward. I would like to personally thank Don for his work to increase the level of debate as opposed to amping the level of demagoguery which so often drowns out reasonable arguments and queries about real issues and the reality of the candidate's capacity to serve well. He will not be replaced any time soon, as we will lose the brevity of reason on KFAY before they turn the keys over to the RNC hatchet opinionists for 20+ hours each day. The moderate and left-leaning folks in our community will be losing a leader in the community and a voice of reason within the media community of this region which is decidedly pro-GOP.

Good luck to Don and his family as they leave one of the most wonderful regions in the nation to live. You've done some good things for our community and I don't believe we'll realize how important you were until you're gone. KNWA produces a terrible newscast without you and I fear that KFAY and the NW AR blogosphere will be so much worse without your presence in this community. God bless.


Blogger Don Elkins said...

Your kind words mean very much to me. Thank you so much. We'll miss NWA (and the rest of this blasted state) when we leave. I hope someone steps up and continues to publicly flog the concept of moderation in the political arena. Keep writing -- you post some of the most thoughtful and insightful short columns I've read online. You have a big fan in me. Best - DE.

3:23 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home