“. . . exploiting the most lurid, shocking, and controversial aspects of humans is like sucking on a crack pipe. They can’t get enough of it.”
[March 30, 2011] In a TV Guide interview in 2010, Oprah Winfrey recounted what she learned from a 1988 episode about a white supremacist group. "What I learned from that is you cannot allow yourself to be a vehicle that promotes the energy of hatred in any form. That was life-changing for me." It is too damn bad the news media does not share her views. Our society would be much better off if haters did not have cable news as a platform to spew their hatred.
Haters of all genres (bigotry, homophobia, racism, etc.) have found a ready, willing, and receptive venue through cable news. They give haters a platform to utter angrily and forcefully their toxic beliefs. In fact, cable news organizations seek out these people. They put a camera in their face, shove a microphone in their hand, and use them to fuel media-generated controversies about immigration, race and religion, and cultural issues like abortion and homosexuality.
In an angry, hostile, racially polluted atmosphere of opposition to the election of Barack Obama, the first Black president, haters are in great demand, especially on Fox News and Conservative talk-radio. Once they are on Fox, it is a sure thing that CNN and MSNBC will also give them a platform to spew their hatred.
Since harboring feelings of intense hostility is like an addiction for haters, they cannot pass up fifteen minutes of fame to spew their hatred in front of millions of people. It would be like asking a drug addict to pass up a needle filled with heroin. That addiction is also true of the news media. For them exploiting the most lurid, shocking, and controversial aspects of humans is like sucking on a crack pipe. They can’t get enough of it.
Case in point: Billionaire real estate tycoon Donald Trump, who is hinting that he might throw his hat in the ring and seek the 2012 Republican nomination for president, jumped on the bandwagon of the so-called “birthers.” He is now going from one cable news show to the next, even on network television, questioning the birthplace and religion of the President of The United States. Trump has no facts to support his accusations of a 40+ year old conspiracy to elect the first Black president, but everybody knows haters don’t deal in facts. They just need a place to spew their toxin.
EVERY news organization on the planet has thoroughly investigated the “birthers” claim and a copy of the President’s birth certificate showing that he was born in the state of Hawaii is available on any of the network’s website. However, that did not stop news producers from giving a platform to a lying, pathetic opportunist to spew his hatred of Barack Obama.
They know Trump is a media whore and a provocative comment is how he draws attention to himself. Nonetheless, they choose to allow their news division to be a vehicle that promotes hatred rather than one which builds consensus. Since news organizations are now corporate owned and profit is more important than ethical journalism, the prospect of anything changing is highly unlikely.
Producers of the news for the four major networks (ABC, CBS, NBC, Fox) and the three cable news channels (CNN, FOX NEWS, MSNBC) have all made the decision that being a “vehicle that promotes the energy of hatred in any form” is good for the bottom-line.
It is now up the viewing public to make a decision whether to give credence to haters by following them to the places where they spew their hatred.
© 2011 Shar’Ron Maxx Mahaffey. All rights reserved.
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