I'm feeling pretty good right now about writing in a recent blog that I wanted to give the CBS Evening News a little more time to strike the right "breath mint/candy mint" balance between soft and hard news.
Thursday night's newscast featured an effective interview with actor Michael J. Fox that felt like a mini-60 Minutes story.
Couric asked good questions and I don't think anyone else of any gender would have done it better. CBS chose, I think rightly, to keep in the moment–the interview had been pre-taped–when Couric had to re-affix Fox's microphone after it was dislodged by his shaking– which he says he only wished he could control with the calculation asserted by his critics.
Fox said the rocking that had prompted radio jock Rush Limbaugh to accuse him of acting was a side-effect of medication, not from the lack of it.
Turns out Couric's sensitivity to the subject was well, if painfully earned. She revealed on the broadcast that her father has Parkinson's disease–she said he had given her the OK to broadcast that fact–which is what Fox suffers from. She also pointed out that she has contributed to research via a Fox-backed funding mechanism.
For the second night in a row, the fluffy ending was scrapped in favor of substance–giving Fox more time to talk about his illness and his mission of backing stem cell research into treatment or cures.
Thanks for making me look like I know what I'm talking about. Somebody has to.
By John Eggerton