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Monday, October 2, 2023


Media bias: the new normal?

David Delgado | The Daily Cougar

Throughout this year’s highly contentious presidential election, party lines and affiliations have been tightly drawn. I suppose this is why the inherent and pervasive bias of the mainstream media has become so shockingly clear. This is worrisome in that news is being spun in so many ways that the American public has no place to hear the unadulterated facts. This could be the new normal or a long-standing tradition — or a little of both.

The American press has traditionally existed in a highly partisan and propagandist form. The first truly successful newspaper outlets, such as the Boston Gazette and the New York Gazetteer, were forged during the American Revolution as Patriot and Loyalist forces to wage their own journalistic war of words.  This merely continued into the debates of 1787 and 1788 over whether to ratify the Constitution. It is even speculated by scholars that the extreme Pro-Federalist bias of the newspapers at the time can take credit for the ratifying of the Constitution.

History shows that the press has a tendency to showcase its tilt and predilection during times of intense polemics.

Although the 21st century newspaper has been forced to take a more sober, conventional and moderate stance in compliance with the desires of the advertisers and business community that supports them, there is still a distinctly partisan bias. However, the new problem is in the overwhelmingly biased television news organizations. Let’s look at the six major providers of television news: ABC, CBS News, CNN, Fox News Channel, MSNBC and NBC News. Of these, FNC has a conservative standpoint. The other five are left-leaning, if not outwardly liberal.

Journalists and news anchors are entitled to express their party affiliation and personal political opinions.  But when these beliefs keep networks from dutifully reporting the facts and investigating the truth, there is have a problem.

On Sept. 11, 2012, the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya was strategically attacked by a heavily armed group suspected to be part of a.l-Qaida. Four Americans were killed, two of which died in a stand-off seven hours after the State Department had informed the White House of the attack.

For weeks, the Obama administration alleged that the attack was the result of a riot over an anti-Muslim video. Everyday more information is uncovered that strongly insinuates that the administration not only knew it was a preplanned attack and lied about it, but also could have deployed a Special Operations team in the nearby Sigonella, Italy. And yet, an urgent request for military aid was denied by the chain of command.

Whether Democrat or Republican, this is an issue that matters. Put yourself in the shoes of those four brave Americans. If something was done wrong, we need to fix the system so nothing like this happens again. It is the job of journalists to not only present the facts, but to earnestly investigate the truth. Only one of the six major news networks has made Benghazi a top issue.

The liberal media has treated President Obama as their first-born son; he can do no wrong and all critics of his policies should be tied to the stake. With 21 percent of U.S. adults reading below a fifth grade level, television media is an important and primary news source for a large block of Americans.

The media has had a long-standing tradition of partiality. But this recent disregard of the basic duties of a media outlet is unacceptable when the press is expected to act as a check on the government. People cannot allow this dereliction of duty to become the new normal.

Sarah Backer is a business sophomore and may be reached at [email protected].

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