For Future Reference

I came across a Congressional hearing from 1985 involving Carl Sagan, who was giving his take on environmental concerns. I couldn’t help but notice the distracting background.

This is something that’s often a part of any Capitol Hill hearing, whether the testimony of a scientist or a confirmation hearing for a Supreme Court justice. There’s so much background noise— people milling about, seeming to be restless or bored or rummaging around for something—a pen or a pad of paper, or just trying to find their phone. Well, not in 1985. In any event, just a lot of fidgeting going on.

I can imagine some of those on the panel were trying to stay awake or their eyes were glazing over, but what Dr. Sagan had to say was important and prescient. He deserved respect and attention, without the distracting movement and looks of disinterest unfolding around him.

Change the camera angle so we don’t have to watch the annoying side show! Or please rearrange the seating.

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