“How the Media Has Distorted a Tragedy,” as explored by Cathy Young in Real Clear Politics:
Liberals and disenchanted conservatives who decry fact-free ideological narratives, true-believer hysteria and willful reality-denial on the right should take a good look at the left’s Zimmerman Derangement Syndrome. Some far-right blogs have spun their own baseless theories depicting Martin as a criminal; but in this instance, their misdeeds are dwarfed by far more mainstream liberal “faux news” (meticulously documented on a dissenting left-of-center blog, The Daily Howler). As a fiction, Zimmerman the white supremacist rivals Obama the Kenyan-born commie Muslim.
Obama is right that our racial history—a history in which, a few decades ago, young black males in much of the country really could be murdered at will for looking at a white person the wrong way—gave Trayvon Martin’s death a powerful and painful resonance for black Americans. That made it all the more incumbent on the media to be scrupulously truthful and responsible in their coverage. At this, they have spectacularly failed, with deplorable consequences.
Read the whole thing, and then check out “Lying as a Way of Life” from Richard Fernandez at the Belmont Club. As Richard notes, when the media and the president have a narrative to flog, “The facts never mattered; reality is unconstitutional:”
Under the current system, given a choice between the Narrative and reality, it’s the Narrative all the way. Things are so bad they’re drinking their own hootch. Recently, Eleanor Clift praised President Obama’s handling of the George Zimmerman/Trayvon Martin circus. “The President’s remarks on Friday are going to be read by future generations. They’re beautiful, they’re eloquent.”
Clift’s remarks underscored the key problem that has to be fixed. No one’s interested in fixing anything. It’s more lucrative to lie, cheat and steal. But not until the public rediscovers the truth and the facts once again can the slightest progress be made made towards fixing anything. Yes, money is short. But far more importantly, sanity is in even shorter supply. Romany Malco, a black actor writing in the Huffington Post risked the wrath of the media gods by stating the obvious. The poor are being taken for a ride:
To be brutally honest, the only reason people are even aware of Trayvon Martin is because it became a topic within mainstream news and pop culture. Meaning: News directors saw it as a profitable, sensational story. …
Our “government” continues to wreak havoc on our civil liberties and there is little to no protest from the black community because of media diversion tactics that keep such pertinent issues out of mainstream media. But if Jay-Z or Rihanna were to make mention of it, we’d suddenly be jolted out of our sugar comas and protesting on freeways.
My point being, people are up in arms about Trayvon based on regurgitated pundits and manipulated facts aired to elicit emotion while fueling America’s anger and division. That’s how you boost ratings. No different from Piers Morgan’s desperate rant over gun control when he knew his ratings were in the dumps….
I believe we lost that trial for Trayvon long before he was killed. Trayvon was doomed the moment ignorance became synonymous with young black America . We lost that case by using media outlets (music, movies, social media, etc.) as vehicles to perpetuate the same negative images and social issues that destroyed the black community in the first place. When we went on record glorifying violent crime and when we voted for a president we never thought to hold accountable. When we signed on to do reality shows that fed into the media’s stereotypes of black men, we ingrained an image of Trayvon Martin so overwhelming that who he actually may have been didn’t matter anymore.
No he didn’t matter any more. Because Trayvon Martin the fact was never of any interest to anybody. The facts never mattered; reality is unconstitutional. All the system cared about was Trayvon Martin the fiction; the meal ticket, the product, the Narrative. Nobody gave a damn about the actual man. In this respect he was exactly what all those illiterate multitudes in the crashing cities are: just meal tickets for a system that uses them as window-dressing to justify scams and job programs meant to benefit only political hacks.
Maybe one day people will wake up to the fact, if they can still count to one.
Finally, in his latest Afterburner, Bill Whittle proffers a video antidote:
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