I'm sure the Networks would say, it shows the American people that their stations were ready to have staff who better understand the social change to come due to the historic nature of the election, or maybe offer some new perspective on political issues since they lived the minority experience. All kind of meaningless because the news is scripted. So its just to put hosts on air who people feel comfortable looking at, and the more diverse the audience, so goes the hosts.
The real change though isn't the hosts, its the guests. Since 08' the amount of young black professors we see discussing daily political issues, or current events is staggering. Melissa Harris Perry even got her own show where she introduces us to even more of black academia. Yet this phenomenon begs one question. If McCain was elected would we know Melissa Harris Perry, Michael Eric Dyson or Marc Lamont Hill? I could fill a page with the names of smart Black professors from prestigious schools around the Country, some more recognizable than others, but none would have remotely become household names without POTUS.
That's the problem, did these people spontaneously materialize on election day. These are professors from Tulane, Georgetown, and Colombia University, respectively. I'm pretty sure they were smart prior to the Obama Administration. Even putting intellectual perspective and experience aside, the image these people project that you can be a young, cool, urban influenced intellectual is needed in society. With all I've learned from Dr. Cornell West, he looks like a guy who should be teaching you something. This younger crop bridges the gap, and should be the new faces in our much needed public role model category.Only time will tell but, if Obama looses this next election we'll see if cable news continues to see the value of the black academic perspective, or if this handful of role model scholars vanishes as quickly as we were introduced to them.