“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”
1st amendment, United States Constitution
Today, I’m changing the focus of my post from consternation about the media and the misinformation and fear mongering it heaps on investors, to the media, a handmaiden to terrorism. It almost appears that the networks, cable news, newspapers and the internet are in league with the terrorists to increase the level of ‘freak-out’; and, as usual without giving one iota of perspective.
If the goal of the terrorists is to create fear and terrorize, the media appears to be hell-bent on being their megaphone. Since early Tuesday morning, March 22, they have pounded the airways and lightwaves with the horrific images of the Brussels airport and subway station, blow-by-blow descriptions and every snippet of speculation about who, what, when, where and how this might have happened. And, oh yes, then there was this item from the Associated press today (3/23/2016):
- “(ParisAP)The islamic state group has trained at least 400 fighters to target Europe in deadly waves of attacks, deploying interlocking terror cells like ones that struck Brussels and Paris with orders to choose the time, place and method for maximum chaos, officials have told The Associated Press.”
Well, gee AP, thanks for sharing!
I am not sure how publishing this story did anything to make Europe or the United States more secure; but, I am certain it amped up the fear in an already-edgy part of the world. I would also imagine that many of our own citizens’ anxiety levels were heightened by this unattributed snippet. And, you know, whenever fear levels are increased, the terrorists win.
I know the notion “if it bleeds, it leads’ actually works. I see it in my own posts. It is simple. The more negative my title, the greater the readership I receive … sometimes, by as much as 1o to 15 times more hits. But, folks, this is not a game to get eyeballs, this is life and death. It is serious business. When the media does this they are seriously affecting the psyches of more-impressionable viewers on top of giving succor to the enemy.
Media, you have the right, guaranteed by the first amendment, to go to DEFCON 1, peddle-to-the-metal, full-freak-out mode on every terrorist attack. However, it does nothing to make us safer. In the final analysis, you are actually just another TOOL in their bag of tricks. It is easy to confuse your actions with aiding and abetting the enemy.
Despite what all of us would like to believe, the world has always been a dangerous place. And, terrorist attacks have become the way of the world. As such, the cost in human terms and the tragedy in these events, are staggering. These are by no means trivial events. The media should report on them, but not obsess about them. When the media obsesses, they become a tool of this barbaric practice.
2 thoughts on “Freedom of Speech or Aiding and Abetting The Enemy?”
I agree. I think that you might have gone one step further. In my view, it is incumbent on the media to recognize their own bias to stimulate circulation and if they are going to make such statements as the “ap” did the media have a real responsibility to share with the reader what they did to gain some independent confirmation that both the story and the specific number (400 terrorist trainees) are accurate.
Good article and I also agree!
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