We all know that controversy sells…
And when you’re in the cable news business, controversy doesn’t just sell—it’s your entire livelihood.
In the news business, if you don’t have views on your stories and your content doesn’t get circulation, your chance to earn advertising money vanishes.
So, it’s no wonder why news channels, papers, and websites need to cash in on any controversy they can in order to stay in business.
It’s a vicious cycle—and sometimes, in order to get those views, clicks, and buys, the 21st Century journalist often needs to create the story in order to ensure that happens.
So, what do they do?
They make snap judgments on rumors and conjecture. Sometimes they decide to run with a story in order to be the first one to cover it—even if they’re doing it before the entire truth can be revealed.
We watched them do it with the Michael Brown shooting in Ferguson, Missouri…
A few alleged bystanders said that Brown had his hands up and was saying “don’t shoot.” The media ran with that story on every channel, and “hands up, don’t shoot” became the mantra for the protests that happened afterward.
Except the official investigation proved that that didn’t happen.
The Snap Judgment That Changed The World
After an investigation, interviews with ACTUAL bystanders, and reviewing surveillance footage, the truth came out. Michael Brown lunged into the car after the officer with intent to hurt or worse…
But that’s not something that anybody talks about. The popular narrative was “hands up, don’t shoot,” and it helped widen the divide between the Left and the Right.
In fact, to this day, the Left will use this same mantra when protesting – showing you the staying power of their false narrative.
We saw this proclivity to jump to conclusions again when “Empire” actor Jussie Smollett called the police and claimed two white men in MAGA hats beat him up and put a noose around his neck.
Rather than waiting for the investigation to take place, the mainstream media ran with it, making it their #1 story…
But then the truth came out that the two white men who “beat up” Smollett were actually two African immigrants trying to make it in the acting world, and Smollett paid them to do it in the first place.
But even once the truth revealed and it was PROVEN that Smollett set this whole thing up, it was too late – the damage was done and the divide was widened even further.
This is an ONGOING problem with the modern mainstream media…
They don’t wait till they get the full story. They simply report on the rumor without caring about the outcome of their irresponsibility. All that matters is the views.
Why It Should ALL Be “Investigative” Journalism
The worst part is that it’s happening with more frequency.
Take, for example, NASCAR’s latest controversy, which just revealed to be a false narrative.
The only black driver on the NASCAR circuit, Bubba Wallace (who hasn’t placed better than 5th place in the past five years) shocked the sport when he revealed that he had found a noose in his garage at Talladega Speedway.
The time was scary, seeing how NASCAR had just outlawed the flying of the Confederate battle flag, otherwise known as the “Rebel” flag, at ant of their events.
The news picked this noose story up and ran with it, and with a sport as stereotypically white as NASCAR, it was an easy narrative to swallow…
The sport of “Rednecks” is sure to have a racist or two in it who probably took offense to the ruling on the Confederate flag.
This started a whole new debate on social media about “heritage vs. racism,” and it all all played into the tearing down of the statues of Confederate soldiers.
However, after the FBI investigated, they found that the noose wasn’t actually a noose…
It was a rope used to pull garage doors down that had been removed and left in the bay.
But again, the damage was done…
The divide widened even more, all simply for the sake of raking in advertising dollars.
It’s a disgusting practice.
We get why these news outlets can’t wait with the story – but the fact remains that these aren’t even stories. The story is how quickly our nation can overreact to an imaginary affront.
The solution is simple…
And I can’t believe I’m about to agree with Bernie Sanders, but we need bring back the Fairness Doctrine in media and add cable news outlets to the list in addition to the broadcast news sources.
Bring back the fairness and unbiased reporting that our country became known for. It’s what made Walter Cronkite the most trusted voice in America, and we need that again.
Ensure that fairness and real news is the goal…
Not sensationalism, rumor, and conjecture.
Let’s get back to news the way it SHOULD be…
Or it will continue to widen the divide between the Right and the Left.
Seems like an easy choice to me…
“And every television and radio station should once again have to follow the fairness doctrine: those with opposing views should have the right to respond to viewpoints expressed on the station.” ― Bernie Sanders