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Extra-Spin Cycle: The Media On The Media08:45
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President Barack Obama speaks at a memorial service for the victims of Saturday's shootings at McKale Center on the University of Arizona campus Wednesday, Jan. 12, 2011, in Tucson, Ariz. (AP)
President Barack Obama speaks at a memorial service for the victims of Saturday's shootings at McKale Center on the University of Arizona campus Wednesday, Jan. 12, 2011, in Tucson, Ariz. (AP)

Wednesday night, President Barack Obama stepped out into the University of Arizona's McKale Memorial Center in front of nearly 14,000 people, and the whole world, thanks to the media. He was there to address the tragic events that took place on Saturday in Tucson.

“If this tragedy prompts reflection and debate, as it should, let’s make sure it’s worthy of those we have lost," Obama said. "Let’s make sure it’s not on the usual plane of politics and point scoring and pettiness that drifts away with the next news cycle."

Obama said, clearly, that a lack of civil discourse was not the cause that led to the deaths of six people in Arizona, and that left Representative Gabriel Giffords critically, terribly injured with a gunshot wound to her head.

Shortly after the events in Tucson were broadcast on television and radios across the country, those radios and televisions began talking instead about rhetoric.

We've now hit the extra-spin setting on the news cycle washing machine: the after-analysis analysis. The fight about the fight. The heated debate about heated debate in this country.

We'll speak with media-watcher John Carroll.

Guest:

  • John Carroll, professor, mass communication, Boston University

More:

This segment aired on January 13, 2011.

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