Journalism is about reporting the news objectively.
That used to be a bulwark principle. It wasn’t supposed to be about inserting your opinion — that was for the opinion page. It was about reporting the facts and checking those facts with at least two legitimate sources before you ran with a story.
The very fact that we can identify the liberal media as the liberal media has shown how far that basic principle has fallen. The checking the facts part has also seemed to have completely gone away with the wind. The only principle to adhere to now seems to be “run whatever you can and spin it however you can” if it can undermine the Republican president.
For some time now, many in media (because they’re not really journalists anymore, they’re just ‘media’), like the folks at CNN and MSNBC, have been activists for a political narrative. But they still often try to present the facade of objectivity.
But Jemele Hill basically gave up the fiction on CNN’s ‘Reliable Sources’ with Brian Stelter.
— Brian Stelter (@brianstelter) June 7, 2020
“This is what we all got in the profession to do,” Jemele Hill said. “Journalism is not a profession of being friends. Journalism is a profession of agitation.”
No, it really isn’t. Not only don’t you understand what it is, but that means you failed in your basic responsibility as a “journalist.” Notice what she didn’t say it included? Reporting the truth or the facts.
Stelter’s response? Not to call her remarks out as wrong, not to question how that varies with what journalism is really supposed to be, but instead saying, “A job of agitation, that line is going to stick with me,” as though it’s somehow profound and right.
But I guess that’s really what it is, to them. They regard it as an avenue to push their agenda, it’s just they don’t admit it quite as bluntly as Hill just did.
She doesn’t even regard it as a problematic position to have. She’s saying it in response to justify the reaction of leftists at the New York Times folding and causing the resignation of their editorial page editor. That wasn’t the only place where difference of opinion was shut down, Hill noting also Pittsburgh and Philadelphia. She thinks that’s her “job,” to shut down opinion of which she doesn’t approve. So not only is agitating for her agenda journalism, but shutting down any opposing opinion is apparently “journalism” too.
This is scary stuff being pushed here.
Can we remind them?
Let me say for the billionth time: Reporters don't root for a side. Period. https://t.co/dhH8eherOR
— Chris Cillizza (@CillizzaCNN) October 16, 2016