O.K. all you media-critics. This one's for you.
During a recent seminar with a bunch of county officials, the group will remain nameless to protect the innocent as Jack Webb from the old TV show Dragnet use to say, they were asked to write one sentence on their attitude toward the news media.
Fasten your safety belts. The group acted as if this was a once in a life time opportunity to get all this venom out of their systems and vent they did.
"The news media is ruining the world as we know it!"
"A necessary evil."
"They don't' really care about the truth."
"They twist the truth."
"Biased and the facts are irrelevant."
"They are not to be trusted."
"They tell the story they want to tell."
"They blow stuff out of proportion."
"The news media seeks shock value."
"Hunts for dirt."
"They put words in your mouth."
Good thing they weren't asked to write two sentences!
Now this was not a room full of malcontents off of their meds. These were law-abiding citizens who are on the other end of media coverage and they supposedly speak from experience. Some did acknowledge that the news media had an important assignment of keeping an eye on public officials but those folks were probably relatives of some reporter out there.
Well needless to say there was not enough time to explain away each beef but the public belief that the media is biased was kicked around.
Do some in the media have an agenda and a slant?
You bet and they appear on Fox and MSNBC.
But, believe this or not, and you won't, most MSM types are trying to call them as they see them. And rather than reach a conclusion based on one story, readers should consider the "body of work" that a reporter writes, the audience was told.
Fact is if every political correspondent was as right or left wing as the public suspects, they'd be in trouble. First, one side or the other would never talk to them which would prevent them from getting the whole story.
And then a second thing would happen; they'd be out of work.
As for the county official who characterized the news media as, "Important but irritating, (sp?) some beleagured correspondents might actually take that as a compliment although it was probably not intended that way.