Thursday night’s Republican presidential debate was the most-watched presidential debate in television history. Candidate Donald Trump was surely the reason for the high ratings, a depressing and frightening fact. This clearly shows that America isn’t concerned about its future as much as it is with reality TV entertainment.
The Nielsen company reported that 24 million people watched the debate, vastly outpacing the 1992 “Larry King Live” debate between Al Gore and Ross Perot, which had 16.8 million viewers. To put it in a more modern perspective, the debate had more viewers than any Monday Night Football game ever. That’s telling.
Trump, an obnoxious loudmouth, drew viewership because people wanted to see his bombastic personality. That’s the reason why people watch reality TV. They want to see the trainwreck. They want something that seems unscripted. However, Trump’s public persona is just as preconceived as scripted television. He knows how he will act and what things he will do to garner attention. Trump’s life is a non-stop pursuit of attention and ratings. Viewership of 24 million people only proves that.