The Press endorsing the President?


I was shocked after reading this “article” in the Salt Lake Tribute: http://www.sltrib.com/csp/cms/sites/sltrib/pages/printerfriendly.csp?id=55019844

Although most major television news outlets tend to lean in favor of one presidential candidate over the other during election time, rarely do we see the official, outright endorsement of one. This article is surprising mainly because it tells readers who to vote for, rather than just state the facts. One of my college journalism textbooks, The Elements of Journalism, states that the press’s role is to “provide citizens with the information they need to be free and self governing.” Presidential endorsements do just the opposite, they corrupt voters’ minds.

The idea of the press making a Presidential endorsement is just plain wrong. This type of “journalism” is completely wrong and unnecessary. Longtime and young readers/viewers of a certain outlet are given a distorted perception of the news – one that is based upon opinion and carefully chosen facts to glorify one candidate and demonize the other. For example, the article above writes, “Romney’s domestic agenda remains bereft of detail and worthy of mistrust.” On what basis is this statement true? Romney went into detail (minus the suddenly all important “numbers and figures”) about his proposed policies at the national debates, so why is a journalist telling me otherwise? No facts, all accusation.

The fact that the Salt Lake Tribute article specifically states that it was initially pulling for Romney is also troubling. What kind of news source already roots for a candidate at the beginning of an election process? Then again, why is the press even (publicly) rooting for any candidate? If a voter comes to the conclusion that Romney isn’t the man for the job, his or her opinion should be based off the hard, known facts that a news source conveys, minus the agenda and brainwashing.

Rage Against the Machine, a hard rocking, politically motivated band tells this mind-blowing situation as it is in “Bullet in the Head.” Lead vocalist Zack de la Rocha raps, “Just victims of the in-house drive by, they say jump and you say how high.”

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The Knoxville News Sentinel is on the right path —– http://seattletimes.com/html/nationworld/2019438490_apuspresidentialendorsementnewspaper.html

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2 Comments

October 21, 2012 · 3:36 pm

2 responses to “The Press endorsing the President?

  1. David Perkins

    It’s an editorial–just like all other editorials, which are strong-minded, principled opinion pieces–and endorsements have a long history. Check the interactive displays I posted on the wiki sidebar. Your reaction does raise an interesting Fox News, which never owns up to the opinions that bend its reporting. There’s an interesting discussion to be had here! If I don’t remember to talk about this, remind me.

  2. David Perkins

    Sorry, in posting that comment I seemed to drop one of my sentences. Here’s the full thing: as I meant it to read: It’s an editorial–just like other editorials, which are strong-minded, principled opinion pieces that run on the editorial page. And endorsements have a long history. heck the interactive displays I posted on the wiki sidebar. Your reaction does raise an interesting question. I would rather read a well thought out, principle argument by an editorial board than watch the slow-burn bias and distortion of Fox News, which never owns up to the underlying opinions that bend its reporting, so they can’t be argued with. I might even argue that a newspaper that can write a strong, thoughtful, careful editorial is one that I would trust to be fair in its reporting! There’s an interesting discussion to be had here! If I don’t remember to talk about this, remind me.

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