Tuesday, October 19, 2004

15. ranting again...(about the news)

So I was in line at Foodland buying milk, coffee, and Ararare (not to be consumed at the same time) last night and I see one of the local papers with a big front page headline reading something like, "Father of Killed Soldier Says Bush to Blame." Now first of all, let me say that my heart goes out to that guy - sons should bury fathers, not the other way around. It's a stupid turn of events, it should never happen, but it did. I don't have a problem with the father saying that. However....

I do have a problem with the newspaper (can't remember which one) highlighting this obvious anti-Bush story while ignoring all of the positive things that are taking place in the Middle East. Afghanastan just had their first election and there was a woman on the ballot for a prominant position. Did we hear anything other than a whisper of acknowledgement for what should have been a front page banner story? This is a country that was under the stranglehold of the Taliban just three short years ago - a society where women were not allowed to speak, let alone vote, let alone make it onto the ballot! Women's rights violations was a contradiction during that time because women had no rights. Even the men had it bad - voice an opinion that was perceived to be out of line with the clerics and torture and death could be possible consiquences. No free speech, no free press and they held their first election. Where was the coverage?

Could it be that highlighting good news in the Middle East would bolster the record of the president and lessen the chances of Kerry getting into office and thus such news gets repressed? Am I a conspiracy buff? Well riddle me this - how is it that Dan Rather airs a news story based on forged documents (a story critical of Bush) and when he gets called on it, the way the incident is reported is as a critique of the influence of conservative websites on the political landscape. HELLO! The real story is that a MAJOR network NEWS anchor did not do his job! Any first year journalism major will tell you the importance of checking sources. Dan Rather's story belonged on the front page of the National Enquirer, not as a story on the CBS Evening News!

All I want is an equal playing field. I want my news to shoot straight. I want both sides of any story but that's not what we have. All the major networks lean left (if not way left). Proof? When's the last time you heard a story critical of the pro-choice movement? What kind of view do you have of the pro-life movement, based on coverage in the media?

Second example - Fox News. Many people in the news media scoff at Fox News, saying that it's just a platform for the Republican party - they call it a conservative news network. That's bunk. You want to see a conservative news program? Watch the 700 Club. If Fox News appears conservative it's only because they treat news stories with an even hand.

This kind of stuff gets me nuts. I wish I could just ignore it but it's ubiquitous, even in when I'm just trying to buy some milk at Foodland! I'm not asking for conservative news. I'm asking for fair, honest news. That's all.

That's all.

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