Peter Jennings Has Lung Cancer

Peter JenningsNEW YORK - Peter Jennings, the chief ABC News anchorman for more than 20 years, has been diagnosed with lung cancer and will begin outpatient treatment next week, the network said Tuesday. Jennings, 66, told ABC News staff members of his diagnosis Tuesday morning and said he will continue to anchor the broadcast when he feels up to it as he begins chemotherapy. More from AP ->
While in college, I worked the evening shift at the university's Activities Center, and the only radio station to come in clearly syndicated Peter Jennings' reportings. Between answering questions from students and studying for upcoming exams, I remember thinking to myself, "It must be so exciting to be a reporter .. you get to be 'in the know'."

Aside from the September 11 coverage, the last time I was glued to Jennings' reporting was in 2000 .. I was one of the six million viewers who tuned in to watch Jennings' "Reporting: The Search for Jesus." It was one of the most fascinating documentaries on the subject. Indeed, Peter Jennings continues to be America's most trusted reporter. I wish him the best in his chemotherapy.

"I'm a little concerned about this notion everybody wants us to be objective." - Peter Jennings

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Anonymous Elizabeth Salinas

For gosh sake, he was a smoker in his younger years ... this should NOT be a surprise to anyone. Wonder if he plans to sue the tobacco industry! He should! - Elizabeth Salinas

Anonymous Stephanie Miller

I remember watching that docunews The Search for Jesus. It was fine reporting, but it didn't answer the question: who was Jesus.

- Stephanie Miller

Anonymous Sarah

I hope he will be ok. My dad had lung cancer, and he passed away when I was just 13, but I understand there are better treatments now. - Sarah G.

Blogger Nam LaMore

ELIZABETH SALINAS: Well, smoking is a bad habit and there are consequences.

Related, here's a story that appeared last year about a smoking chimpanzee (from BBC):

A chimpanzee has taken up smoking and spitting, according to China's Xinhua news agency.

It is unclear why Feili, 13, has started smoking but her zoo keeper said it was because she was frustrated. She has turned from a "gentle girl" into a "shrew", said Liu Bing, director of Zhengzhou zoo, Henan province. Mr Liu said Feili's partner at the zoo was 28 years her senior, and was unable "to meet her sexual demands".

Feili was not addicted to nicotine, he said, but was just imitating tourists. However, she does appear to be quite keen on smoking - and has been known to resort to desperate measures to get what she wants. Xinhua reported that Feili became excited when she saw a visitor light up a cigarette, and grew impatient when they showed no sign of giving it to her.

It quoted one boy visiting the zoo as saying: "Just now a tourist threw a cigarette butt to just outside the cage - she tried to get the butt with a stick."


Anonymous Jud

Both my uncle and dad had lung cancer. They couldn't, and didn't, quit smoking even after they were diagnosed. But they made sure use kids didn't smoke. I was pretty sure my brother and I would end up being smokers, but I guess the lung cancer scared us too much. - Jud

Blogger Rik

While I certainly wish Mr. Jennings well in his fight against lung cancer, I won't be upset to see him retire. I've watched him for years and found him to be another arrogant critic of many things American - funny when you consider that he's Canadian. The quote that you listed of his says it all. Objectivity in the national media? What a concept! Who would ever want that?


Blogger Nam LaMore

rik: i actually enjoy jennings' reporting. i don't believe any reporter can be 100% objective, as they are all slaves to their advertisers. i find his appeal in his style of delivery and, more importantly, in the topics he chooses to cover.

Blogger Rik


I agree - I think it's impossible for a reporterto be 100% objective. The problem is, too many don't make any effort to even appear objective. I'm not going to get into the whole "liberal bias in the media" arguement as that's been done ad nauseum. And I don't want t oget into a big arguement with you about Jennings either. If you like his reporting, that's fine for you. This link will help explain why I don't like him:


Blogger Nam LaMore

rik: i work with the media all the time (that's my chosen profession), and have been aware of the tug of objective reporting for years. it's one of those concepts that reporters believe they must uphold, as it allows them to have a nice soapbox to stand on. however, they all know that it's only a concept, and rarely (if ever, actually) carried out in their reporting.

i've been scanning/subscribing to for since mid-'01 .. it's part of the reads to prepare my briefing document; i do this so i and my executives are aware of any issues that may surround a reporter (or news organization) that we'll be meeting.

speak up!

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