Jan
01
2014

Rob Ford’s Crack Faux Pas

Media fascination with white Toronto mayor’s drug of choice

The "detail" about Toronto Mayor Rob Ford's drug use that most seemed to fascinate media was that it involved a drug associated with "black underclass" stereotypes.

It’s important to note what pushed this episode into the spotlight in a culture desensitized to political scandals: A white Canadian mayor smoked crack. And our collective jaws were expected to hit the floor when we saw the “evidence”: video of Ford smoking with a group of black men in a Toronto housing project.

Jan
01
2014

Media Whitewash US Role in Congo

Getting credit for promoting peace without blame for fueling war

This New York Times piece gave the US credit for pressuring Rwanda to rein in its violent proxies, but failed to note how US aid had supported violence in the region.

Corporate media overlooked the long-term role the US and other Western nations have played in protecting and funding the sponsors of a bloody insurgency in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Jan
01
2014

Nelson Mandela, 1918–2013

Remembering—or not—a revolutionary

nelson-mandela

Watching the corporate media tributes to former South African leader Nelson Mandela, you had to assume that certain aspects of Mandela’s life would be forgotten or downplayed.

Dec
02
2013

Weather—Without Climate

TV news seldom connects extreme weather and global warming

HartChart

A new FAIR study shows that even when covering weather events that scientists suggest are linked to climate change, the news rarely mentions the changing climate. Out of 450 TV news segments about extreme weather, just 16 even mentioned climate change.

Dec
02
2013

Climate Change Is Not the Future

Reporting needed on present-day impacts of global warming

Beaufort coast, Alaska (cc photo: ShoreZone)

Making climate change an A-section story means ceasing to think of it as something that “might happen"; it's here now.

Dec
01
2013

Seeing What They Want to See in Malala

Media amplify Yousafzai’s criticisms of Taliban, not US drones

Obama meeting with Malala Yousafzai

Malala Yousafai's remarks portraying the US government as anything but heroic were ignored by most major US media outlets—particularly her insistence that the US government and the Taliban are both obstacles to women’s rights in the tribal regions of Pakistan, a sentiment she bravely expressed to President Obama when she met with him in the Oval Office on October 11.

Dec
01
2013

Why Media Should Play ‘Blame Game’

Responsibility for shutdown is a crucial journalistic question

PBS's Judy Woodruff referred to "the president's healthcare law" - as if the ACA hadn't been passed by both houses of Congress and upheld by the Supreme Court.

Media like to dismiss the partisan “blame game,” but accurately placing blame can be a crucial journalistic function. After all, nothing promotes political irresponsibility more than the knowledge that whatever you do, media will blame both sides equally.

Dec
01
2013

Immigration’s Imaginary ‘Open Sesame’

Right-wing media’s incredible fear of asylum seekers

Mexican soldiers (cc photo: LWY)

According to right-wing media outlets, the latest immigration threat comes in the form of a “flood” of asylum seekers at the US/Mexico border.