Dylan M. New York

The Mainstream Media: Good or Bad?

A little dip into how the media may be swaying the public's opinion

Dear Mr./Mrs. President,

I am Dylan M. I am writing to you because I feel there are certain things that should be brought to your attention. One of these important topics is the Black Lives Matter situations. These protests have led to injuries, and even the death of some police officers and civilians, and yet nothing seems to have been done about this. Misinformation presented by the media has led to situations like these, and we as a nation need to come together to inform our people without bias.

In June, 5 police officers were murdered in cold blood after a BLM protest in Dallas, Texas. The man who was arrested for these killings, Micah Johnson, is an African-American man, who stated that he “wanted to kill white people, especially white police officers”. Yet, despite these horrific murders and these racist and ignorant quotes by a murderer, there seems to be more uproar and outrage over singular killings of African-American citizens by white officers, when these killings may have actually been completely justified. People went crazy over the death of Michael Brown, yet if they actually examined the situation, they would read that the police report states that Brown had punched Officer Darren Wilson, tried to steal Wilson’s police-issued gun, and then tried to sprint at Wilson at top speed. Another death that caused a stir in 2013 was the death of Trayvon Martin, who was killed by neighborhood watchman George Zimmerman. Martin was apparently attacking and beating Zimmerman before he was shot. In both cases, the shooters were not convicted. How on Earth can these two deaths possibly be more controversial than the Dallas killings?

A large factor of the Black Lives Matter movements and the so-called “race war” has been the mainstream media sources. The media will and has twisted things to make them more newsworthy and more controversial. At the Democratic National Convention, when they attempted to hold a moment of silence for the 5 killed officers, many people began chanting “Black Lives Matter” during the moment of silence. Besides the fact that this is absolutely disgraceful to our country, it shows that some of these protesters are undermining their own cause. Some facts have shown that 32% of all people killed by police in the last year were black- even though black people also committed 39% of all crime that is likely to result in a violent police confrontation. However, the mainstream media sources generally will not show us these facts. It is entirely too easy for the media to say that there’s nothing here, and move on. No, they make something out of nothing, per say, and act like the BLM movement is one of the most important things to happen to America. The media is fueling the fire, and giving the movement life. Instead, hardly anything negative is shown about BLM, and they’re made out to be the heroic good guys, while they frame police officers as the villains. All this is doing is giving one side more motivation, more energy, and leaning our society to a certain side. Obviously I am not saying that every person who supports Black Lives Matter is out to injure or kill, just like most cops are not racist. However, when the media covers only the cops that do injure or kill people that many or may not be innocent, then this portrays cops to be racist, and when they do not cover the injuries or deaths that occur from BLM protesters, then that heavily favors the BLM side.

In what world are people whose protests have resulted in murdered police officers in Dallas, Baton Rouge, San Diego, Bristol, Valdosta, and St. Louis, and injured civilians in all these cities and countless more, seemingly portrayed to be more heroic than the police officers who put their lives on the line every single day to protect the people that are killing them? Even the leader of the BLM movement, DeRay McKesson, has called for these violent protests to end. The media won’t cover that, though. If they showed that, then people would see that many very serious wrongdoings have occurred at many of their protests. Instead, many people are not even aware hat officers have been killed in cities other than Dallas. In fact, when I was conducting research for this letter, even I was unaware that there had been police killings in that many cities. That goes to help prove how much natural media bias there is. The media mainly shows President Obama calling these protesters “heroes”, and other famous people endorsing them. They normally don’t show black celebrities, former Marines, former World War II and Vietnam veterans, and black police officers condemning Black Lives Matter. The media needs to be regulated at a certain point. This looks like it would be impossible, however, due to the right of free speech. Yet there needs to be some way to ensure that people see the full truth. To be sure that this happens, I suggest that the U.S. government design and launch their own news network, that will not feature columnists, or opinionated politicians. Instead, it will only show facts, and show both sides of the story. By not showing any one point of view, or having anybody there trying to persuade people for their side, it will allow viewers to see the full truth on every issue, and make their own conscience decision on topics. This would help our nation to become more educated and overall make this nation a better place.

Now, you may notice that two of the sources I have cited are pretty strongly right-wing news sources. These sites show facts that support their cause, and don’t show facts that devalue their cause. The same exact thing can be said for the left side. If you look at Rolling Stone’s website, they show articles claiming that Donald Trump’s son is a white supremacist, and that Trump himself doesn’t believe in the Constitution. Besides these claims being totally absurd, they have no evidence to back up either claim. It’s happening on both sides. Fox News, in light of the WikiLeaks incident with Hillary Clinton, has two articles in particular that stand out; “2 Systems of Justice-- One for America, One for Clinton”, and “WikiLeaks Shows Gender Pay Gap at Clinton Foundation”. This is exactly the problem. No matter what side you are on, media bias is there. People will go to whatever website or news channel is showing facts that they want to hear, and not listen to whatever they don’t want to hear. All this is doing is keeping these people from being completely educated, and dividing our country even more.

In conclusion, this nation is sadly misinformed when it comes to many issues, primarily the Black Lives Matter issue. This is due to media corruption and bias. We can fix this by starting an unbiased, government-run news network. I hope you’ll be on board with me, this can be a big change and help make America educated.


Dylan M

Ballston Spa High School

AP 12

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