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Sandi Jackson Grants Exclusive Interview To Former Chicago Honey Bear

"Ald. Sandi Jackson (7th) referred to the media as 'jackals' at a fund-raising event Tuesday night and said her husband was at home and doing well," the Sun-Times reports.

"The jackals are outside. Let them stay outside," she shouted into a microphone, referring to the press staked outside a birthday fund-raising bash. "We are family in here . . . it's because of you all that I keep it going on."

But at least one would-be jackal was considered family enough to be allowed in for an exclusive "interview."

It's not hard to see why that "reporter" was chosen.

We turned on the camera and let her talk and aired her statements without asking any real questions! And we even put some transitions between her statements and dug out some archival footage! Presto! Reporting!

(Text here if you haven't the patience.)

Of course, this doesn't qualify as an "interview" in any journalistic sense of the word, but this is local TV news, which doesn't qualify as "news" in any journalistic sense.

Examples of unasked questions:

* When did you first notice your husband experience symptoms of mental illness?

* Why have you tried so hard to connect your husband's weight-loss surgery to his bipolar disorder when apparently no doctor has made that diagnosis?

* Is Raghu Nayak a liar?

* Did you ever discuss with your husband fundraising for Rod Blagojevich in exchange for a U.S. Senate seat appointment?

* You conducted a poll in 2008 not only testing how voters viewed a Senate seat appointment for your husband but how much they supported you as his replacement in Congress. Are you saying you are now not interested? Is that a promise? Those discussions have not taken place?

* Please tell us what health plan among the hundreds available to congressman your husband is under. What exactly isn't covered? What about your city health care plan?

* So no proceeds from the sale of your house will go to legal fees?

And so on.

But then, reporting isn't exactly Burton's thing, even if she has gone to a few crime scenes in her time and empathized with victims' families long enough to get an on-air statement. That's not journalism, it's show biz. Which is where Burton got her start and where her ambitions lied all along.

From her (footnoted and verified) Wikipedia page:

Prior to Burton beginning her career in broadcasting, she was on television on Romper Room, as a contestant on Star Search, and hosted an hour long cable TV show Simply Elegant.

Perfect. And yet, it gets better.

In addition to being on television, Burton was a cheerleader. She was part of the Chicago Honey Bears cheerleading squad for the Chicago Bears for three seasons from 1983 - 1986.

Then there's this interview she gave to the incredibly obsequious David Guarino in 2001.

It's quite a leap from being the spokesmodel for the Ed McMahon vehicle Star Search in the 1980s to co-anchoring the 10 p.m. weekend news at the No. 1-rated news station in the third largest U.S. market.

It sure is!

Romper Room . . . was my first television appearance. I was on Kiddie-A-Go-Go, Bozo's Circus I did several times. But broadcasting, I have to go back, I'm not sure which qualifies. If you mean commercial television news, 'cause I did Star Search and I won several times. For the spokesmodel category.

Even more perfect!

I was teaching Special Ed. And elementary. Because my sister, who went to get her Ph.D., had Special Ed children. And she didn't want just anybody taking over her class for a whole year. So I took her class for the time she was gone.

Is that legal?

I don't want people to feel bad. They're already feeling bad. I want to do the best I can to maybe shine a positive light on whatever has occurred. I think that people look at me and they know I have compassion. That might be something that gets me in trouble, but I'm not going to treat people any other way. I just don't have it in me.

Which means you are not emotionally or intellectually equipped to be a journalist.

I mean, Ferraro ran for president.

I rest my case.


See also:
* Reporting The Jesse Jackson Jr. Story

* Item: The Lying Game (midway down)


Comments welcome.


Posted on September 26, 2012

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