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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

Column: We can’t let liberal bias define our media

The American populous is easily influenced. There is nothing revolutionary about this fact. We’ve been eating up propaganda since the birth of this nation, and we literally buy things because we see a famous person buy that same product. Groupthink isn’t just something we encounter in annoying group projects — it exists throughout the country on a wide scale.

Because of the tendency for the masses to blindly believe or fall into groupthink when it comes to things broadcasted on television or written in news sources, a great deal of power rests on the shoulders of the media.

Media influence is extremely prevalent and shouldn’t be underestimated.

Freedom of the press ensures that journalism is an avenue for fair and unbiased reporting. It’s imperative that news media cover issues from multiple perspectives and help the general population form its opinions, rather than being force-fed information from the government or other powerful entities.

But in recent years, the media has become overwhelmingly representative of the liberal population, and a liberal media bias has become a reality.

In a country founded largely on the principle of free speech, being able to consume balanced and unbiased news should be a foundational piece of being a member of this society.

In a study of the economics of liberal bias, economist Daniel Sutter found that, “People with the talent, temperament, and personality to be journalists might also be inclined toward liberal political causes.” A separate study done by professors from both UCLA and the University of Missouri discovered that, based on numerous polls and data, “an almost overwhelming fraction of journalists are liberal.”

But did we really need a study to tell us that? Turn on the TV — be it to CNN or “Saturday Night Live”— it’s impossible to miss the general liberal slant taken toward most issues.

This isn’t meant to be an accusation of the media for trying to brainwash the public by pushing its liberal agenda. It’s just that if a journalist has a belief, it’s hard to avoid having it shine through in his or her writing. One could certainly make assumptions on my beliefs based on this column, but that doesn’t mean I’m straight-up lying.

But this is still problematic. It creates a false notion that anyone not liberal is wrong and that his or her opinion is invalid. I would argue that any well-thought-out opinion should be met with the same contemplation, regardless of whether it is “conservative” or “liberal.”

It’s a problem when all ideas are not given the same amount of weight, and the unfortunate truth is that this is currently taking place with liberal writers controlling the larger part of the news spin. Of course, there’s Fox News and a few smaller conservative websites. But Fox News’ reach, when compared to the more liberal networks, is miniscule.

There needs to be a more deliberate balance of journalism. In an ideal — albeit unrealistic — world, news would be reported in an unbiased manner.

The next best thing is to get our news from a wider variety of sources. More perspectives mean less bias.

With a more balanced approach to our media, Americans can learn to evaluate all available information and make more informed decisions.

The first step is to recognize the general liberal bias that exists in the media. And that no matter where you fall on the political spectrum, balancing your media consumption is a step in a positive direction. 


Follow Scott Baca on Twitter.


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