Saturday, September 17, 2005

Clarification: The Negative Press

A posted anonymous comment, and a personal conversation with a friend, have led me to suspect that not everybody got the point of my post entitled The Negative Press. I therefore offer this clarification.

The piece was satire!

In it I sarcastically mock those who might be inclined to criticize the press for relentlessly reporting the litany horrors that occur daily in Iraq.

I don't hear it so much now, but earlier in the war a common complaint was that the press concentrated too much on the negative aspects of our military effort while giving short shrift to the uplifting, feel good stories such as the rebuilding of schools and hospitals.

By now, however, few can doubt that the violence and chaos gripping Iraq almost two and a half years after the invasion are the story. (Two hundred Iraqis died in a flurry of more than a dozen bombings on Wednesday. Two hundred! NPR's Anne Garrels, reporting on the mayhem, said that "many Iraqis seemed on the verge of tears, feeling they're being swept into a civil war they don't want.")

If we're going to continue this Iraq adventure, we need to do it with eyes wide open and an attentive American public. We must not blot out the truth with sappy fluff stories or willful denial in the name of a shallow, mindless patriotism. The business of the press is to tell it like it is, not to be cheerleaders or mouthpieces for our government. Our democracy depends upon it.

Copyright (C) 2005 James Michael Brennan, All Rights Reserved


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