Yesterdays Union violence over Michigan Right-to-Work legislation toward a comedian, Stephen Crowder, went unreported on the network news programs. In Contrast, during peaceful teaparty rallies, Networks went out of their way to call the movement ‘raciest’ or ‘violent’ with little or no evidence to show on their programs. This is an example of bias reporting when the networks disagree with the outcome of legislation. The networks further failed to report the violently charged rhetoric, “there will be blood,” even when they focused on the rights ‘target maps’ and political chatter that spoke of “taking a candidate out.”
Anyone with a few weeks in journalism school knows the difference between metaphorical language in political speech and a Union leader referring to an actual violent event. It seems that true journalism techniques are set aside when the messaging goes against the political agenda of the networks.
The Media Research Center’s Newsbusters is a good resource to check on media bias. This story comes fro their pages:
All three networks on Tuesday night and Wednesday morning ignored the violent assaults by union protesters in Michigan, instead vaguely insisting that activists were simply “voicing their anger” at the “showdown raging in the heartland.” The morning shows on Wednesday allowed little coverage of Michigan at all, a mere 72 seconds out of eight hours of programming. (On Tuesday, the nightly newscasts offered eight minutes out of a possible 90 total.)
On Tuesday, World News reporter Alex Perez put the focus not on out of control violence, but on the fact that Michigan’s right-to-work bill actually passed. He began, “The anger boiling over. Officers turning to pepper spray to control the crowd at least 10,000 deep. But it wasn’t enough.” One might think the journalist was speaking of the attack on Fox News contributor Steven Crowder. No. Perez kept the attention on the new law: “Michigan Republican lawmakers approving landmark legislation, lifting the requirement that workers in unionized workplaces pay union dues.” [See video below. MP3 audio here.]
This is quite a contrast for World News. On March 21, 2010, anchor Diane Sawyer fretted about Tea party protesters marching against ObamaCare: “Opponents of the bill have been out today, and some of them pulled out all the stops. Protesters roaming Washington, some of them increasingly emotional, yelling slurs and epithets.”