|ICA Protests PBS Attack On Chiropractic: Demands Apology and Recall of Program
From ICA Chiropractic News Service
The International Chiropractors Association is calling for an immediate and universal response from the chiropractic community to protest the on-going broadcast of a grossly distorted and internationally damaging depiction of the science and practice of chiropractic on Public Broadcasting Service (PBS) stations across the U.S. In a regular feature show, Scientific American Frontiers, carefully developed negative and demonstrably false information is being broadcast in an episode entitled "A Different Way to Heal?"
This program is supposedly looking at alternative approaches to health care. It is clear, however, that the producers were anything but objective when gathering their material. Both the script and the clips included are designed to distort the public's understanding of chiropractic in a most negative and damaging way.
In the broadcast that first aired on June 4th, hosted by well-known celebrity Alan Alda, chiropractic is represented as being unscientific, religion-based and extremely dangerous, all representations which are insulting and damaging to the 55,000 doctors of chiropractic who are licensed doctor-level health care providers and the millions of patients who are under their care. The producers of this show made an obvious decision to seek out chiropractic's most virulent critics, presenting their assertions as fact, and characterizing the few positive aspects of chiropractic noted in the show, such as the enthusiastic testimonial of a patient, as unreliable and lacking in validity. "It is crystal clear that from start to finish, the objective of this production was to project the most negative picture of chiropractic possible," said ICA President Dr. D.D. Humber. "The carefully crafted, demeaning language, the complete distortion of the most basic facts about chiropractic and the absence of any reference to any of the landmark elements of chiropractic's validity, from state licensure and Medicare inclusion to any of the hundreds of studies that provide compelling evidence of chiropractic's effectiveness, reveal the editorial mission of this production." ICA attempted to contact senior PBS management personnel and the production company that created the show. Both declined to discuss the concerns of the chiropractic profession and ICA has no choice but to take the necessary protest to a very public level. ICA urges all doctors of chiropractic, students, patients and any citizen concerned about fairness in the media to review the substance of this broadcast and to contact PBS and demand that the program be immediately withdrawn from broadcast schedules, that an apology be issued and that an opportunity be provided to correct the grotesquely distorted and intentionally damaging picture of chiropractic painted by this show. Concerned citizens can contact PBS via the Internet at www.PBS.org. Through that website, citizens can locate their local PBS stations, and obtain specific addresses and contact information. You can contact PBS via e-mail at www.pbs.org/aboutsite/feedback.html. PBS can also be contacted by mail by writing to: Ms. Pat Mitchell, President and Chief Executive Officer Public Broadcasting Service 1320 Braddock Place Alexandria, VA 22314
"The outrage that chiropractors have every right to feel at the scurrilous and deceitful attack through this broadcast must be compounded by the knowledge that it is our money that is being used to perpetrate this injustice," said Dr. Humber. ICA also urges every concerned citizen to make sure as part of any communication with local PBS stations to let them know of the economic impact this incident will have. The ICA is calling on the 55,000 doctors of chiropractic in the U.S., the 100,000 others they employ, chiropractic students and the tens of millions of people of all ages to whom doctors of chiropractic effectively and safely provide care, to withhold all donations until PBS corrects the damage it has done to a worthy and noble profession. ICA also urges the chiropractic community to let their state legislative representatives and Members of Congress know how they feel about the abuse of the public trust displayed by PBS in this damaging broadcast. PBS holds a tax-exempt status as well as receiving hundreds of millions of dollars in taxpayers' money.
PBS is a private non-profit organization founded in 1969, broadcasting via 349 "non-commercial" stations throughout U.S. territory. PBS boasts a budget of more than $1.6 billion, much of which comes from state and federal tax revenue. The sharp anti-competitive, marketplace impact that is sought by this broadcast is further illuminated by the fact that this segment was funded by a subsidiary of Phillips Medical Systems. ICA finds the negative depiction of non-medical procedures and practices inherently suspect, since the approaches to health supposedly being reviewed stand in direct competition to the company that provided the funding for this segment.
"PBS has a lot to answer for since they are, ultimately, responsible for the integrity of the information they broadcast. We have a right to expect an organization like PBS to act in an objective and responsible manner and not lend itself to exploitation in the kind of marketplace manipulation based on lies as seen in this instance. ICA urges immediate action to see that this insidious and prejudicial kind of activity on the part of PBS is stopped now," said ICA President Dr. D. D. Humber.
For More Information, Contact the International Chiropractors Association, a Worldwide Community of the Most Successful Chiropractors on Earth at: email@example.com or call them at 800 423-4690.