It’s no secret that the media is a consistent presence in our lives. It’s also no secret that our news sources are incredibly biased. Each party feels the need to go to ‘their’ stations for the ‘truth’, but the truth might be something else entirely.
One of the first classes taught in the Mass Communications department here at SHSU is Writing for Mass Media. In this class, we’re taught to strictly separate fact from opinion. We are required to see/hear a story, comprehend it, state the 5 W’s (who, what, where, when, and why) and formulate it into a narrative that is both engaging and unbiased. Unfortunately, this is not how real news works. Real news has angles, it uses vocabulary that manipulates the viewers/listeners opinion, it leaves vital information out, and even worse, it outright manipulates stories to fit agendas.
As relieved as I am that more of my peers have stayed involved in this election season and plan to vote, it is disappointing at how much they allow the media to manipulate and even placate them. It’s disappointing how much the average voter is shamed of their opinions in a country that supposedly prizes and respects the freedom of each and every one of our beliefs.
It’s a fact that Hillary Clinton is under investigation for criminal offenses that affect our entire nation’s well-being. She’s been proven to be a pathological liar who only cares about her reputation and power. It’s also a fact that Donald Trump is not a popular candidate due to the fact that he has zero filters. He’s been painted as this terrible, racist, human being with no heart (despite the fact that Clinton’s “friend and mentor”, Robert Byrd was a former member/recruiter of the KKK). Although, I definitely agree that we need better candidates, the fact of the matter is that we don’t. We are stuck with these two candidates, unless by some miracle, Gary Johnson is elected.
Many students on campus have said that they’d rather see Clinton in office and this is worrisome. The media has great things to say about Clinton and only bad things about Trump. Supporters don’t seem to care that they want to elect a criminal into office and would rather see someone under threat of indictment in office than Trump.
The left media has consistently thrown anything unflattering and offensive about Trump in our faces since he announced that he would be running for President. We don’t see this kind of air time for Clinton. Anytime you see her on the screen, she is seen as the ethical one (the email scan refutes this), faithful wife (let’s not kid ourselves, that is a strictly political marriage), experienced politician (who has lied and is responsible for the Benghazi incident) and an inspiring feminist (she is no role model.) Rarely do you see something offensive or unflattering about her even though her criminal actions could bring our country to its knees.
It’s been said over and over again that neither candidate is a goodchoice; there are people who would rather throw away their vote by not voting than voting either of them into office. The truth is that we need to start thinking for ourselves and looking at the actual facts instead of listening to the skewed opinions of the media. Instead of taking what is said on your screen as fact, take a few minutes and fact check.