Media top headlines July 19
The White House getting blasted for supporting Big Tech ‘collusion’ on banning COVID ‘misinformation’ spreaders, a reporter’s candid assessment of progressives on Cuba, and President Biden getting roasted on MSNBC round out today’s media headlines.
Liberal Washington Post columnist Perry Bacon Jr. argued Sunday that the media should cop to its biases but frame them as ones in favor of what he called positive “values,” saying “of course the media is against authoritarian people like” former President Donald Trump.
Appearing on CNN’s media affairs show “Reliable Sources,” Bacon implored the media to focus on a “core mission” of defending the idea of a multiracial democracy and articulating “clear-cut values.”
“[The media] should move on from this idea that the audience is trying to get equal numbers of Republicans and Democrats, or not offend Mitch McConnell’s office, or whatever it is, and to really get focused on what is our core mission,” Bacon said after being asked by host Brian Stelter about the media’s role in the modern era.
“I would argue the core mission is to present facts, present evidence, present an evidence-based view of the world, and to also, in my view, defend the ideas of a democracy in a multiracial democracy,” he added. “What that looks like, I think, is defending and being unabashed – vaccines work, Joe Biden won the election, Black lives do matter and we should be honest about when Black people are discriminated against unfairly.”
Bacon claimed that to accomplish those things, media organizations needed to have “clear-cut values” that could be articulated on their websites and in their programming. He then advocated for the media admitting and embracing their biases.
“We are biased in terms of facts. We in the media are biased in terms of we support vaccines. We in the media hire LGBT employees. We are biased against bans against trans or gay people,” he said. “So if we can be honest about those biases … That’s why journalists behaved the way they did when Trump – we are in favor of the person who won the election being president.”
“So once we’re honest about those things, that may turn off some people, but it will help us be better as institutions and better as journalists if our first goal is here are the values we stated we are trying to implement, and then secondary, we will take the audience who embraces those values,” Bacon added. “That doesn’t mean our values are Democratic and not Republican, but our values are entirely small ‘D’ democratic and not authoritarian or something like that … Of course the media is against authoritian people like Trump.”
He argued that not standing up for core values in the media made readers from both the left and right not trust their reporting. “Of course we have values and we should just be honest about them,” he said.
“We’re beyond the idea that we can talk about both sides … This is a life and death matter, as Joe Biden and the White House are talking about on Friday in terms of Facebook. We are now in a life and death situation where accuracy in media really does matter now,” he added later, referring to Biden’s attacks on Facebook concerning misinformation about coronavirus vaccines.
Bacon previously said on “Reliable Sources” that the media appears to be in favor of the Democratic Party because of its bias toward “evidence” and “truth.”
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