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Thursday, July 17, 2014

Breeding Fear and Disrespect

We were watching CNN this morning and had to turn it off. Not because of the war news out of Israel/Palestine, Russia/Ukraine, or Syria. Not because of fires, death, or famine. Because of the news anchor and the shows being advertised. Not Fox or MTV or E!News. CNN.

The anchor in question was interviewing a representative of Palestine and, in essence, called him a liar. He maintained his cool, but she didn't. The shows ~ original shows created by CNN ~ are about spreading fear. The Killer Next Door kind of thing. Voice overs that say "It takes courage...it takes courage to get out of bed every morning when there is SO MUCH to fear..."


There is an apocryphal story about President Johnson's response to a critical editorial by Walter Cronkite around the Vietnam War, saying "If I've lost Walter Cronkite, I've lost middle America." If that is true or not, we believe it. We believe it, because Cronkite was as objective as a human being can be. We didn't know his opinions about much. We didn't know his emotions about much. And when we did learn them, it mattered and was worth noting.

Truth is we are embracing fear these days. And we have gotten disrespectful and emotional as a society. Objectivity is becoming a lost art. We're doing this all on our own. We don't need our "objective news outlets" to be helping us along.

Those are Pobble Thoughts. That and a buck fifty will get you coffee.

3 comments:

Ian Lidster said...

You raise points that I, as a long time journalist, absolutely agree with.
You know, I have to blame a great deal of this fear inducement on Facebook and other electronic connectedness. Dear old Walter C. didn't have to worry about such things. I still remember that teeny hint of grief that passed across his face when he announced JFK had died.

Mike Christie said...

It is so sad that CNN has lost its integrity. This is far from the first example of that being the case. They were once trustworthy and reliable. No more.

Well, we have NPR, and, surprisingly or ironically, depending on your perspective, as you have discussed here, Al Jazeeera.

Still, it is sad and it is a loss.

BostonPobble said...

Ian ~ Yes, this is an issue you would've had to deal with in a professional capacity, I guess. I agree that Facebook et al is partially to blame. *sigh*

Mike C ~ A loss indeed. They were my go-to for objective, factual *news* for so long. As you say, it's a shame.