What is the role of a journalist? For many years, I thought it was reporting the news. The expectation for those who chose this worthy profession was to deliver the objective truth without bias or subliminal messages. Like many, I took this for face value as I did so many things from the purported experts. This thinking helped me maintain a particular way of seeing the world, firmly adhering to this embedded belief system.
ENJOY PRIOR PARTS IN THIS SERIES BELOW⤵︎
Over an extended period, being the curious person I am, inquiry prompted me not to be so staunch in certain long-held beliefs. Yes, more than ever, I remain a person of faith after a brief departure from my organized religion of origin, only to return when I attended a church that was supposedly open and welcoming. That was the case except around ideas based on the catholic scriptures or any sect of Christianity. Yes, hypocrisy has no bounds. Thus, I went full circle, returning to catholicism, never to depart again.
One of the main areas I have come to see that is not always true is journalistic integrity. I am appalled at the proliferation of disinformation or “facts” withheld by all forms of media.
Oh, what a tangled web we weave
When first we practice to deceive,
by Sir Walter Scott
The Gray Lady
Once upon a time, there was a lady with shimmery ashe-blonde hair. Her mane was so spectacular; in the sunlight, it took on a silvery tinge. The nickname Gray was bestowed on her because Silver seemed too cumbersome. Gray was not only stunning but thought to be superior in intelligence providing vast amounts of information. Oh, the beautiful and extraordinary learned people could not get enough of her. They swooned and quoted from this exceptional woman. One day, however, some people found out that she was not always truthful. Gasp! Oh my goodness! Naively, these regular, you know, little people convinced the truth would be welcomed shared the discrepancies in her narrative.
Conversely, the intellectuals attacked them. “How dare you question Gray, you stupid fools? Who do you think you are?”
Gray, a narcissist, played victim, but her lies caused her stress. She began losing weight and soon appeared to be dying. The brilliant ones were horrified. “No! How do we save her? We do not care that she is faulty with a few ‘pesky’ facts. Please somebody, you know one of you billionaires or millionaires help her.” Suddenly, their wish came true. A knight in shining armor from a foreign country provided the remedy. Gray had been suffering from low oxygen. Alas, her hero brought forth a shiny, new oxygen tank. Shortly after, Gray, still skin and bones, began breathing heartily. As a result, she started not just surviving, but with the assistance of her fans, thriving. More defiant than ever, her thoughts are, “I will get my way, truth or not.”
Let us look at a few “What ifs” by the premiere media outlet in the United States:
- What if the information about the atrocities against the Jewish community occurring in Nazi Germany was not relegated to the back pages from 1939 to 1945?
- What if the correspondents reporting from a communist regime did not hide the truth about some of the oppressed people in that land undergoing systematic starvation? What if one of these correspondents who received the Pulitzer prize had it rescinded? The Gray Lady will not do this, claiming the major mishap was not deliberate. Because the newspaper supported the collective ideology, some people question the newspaper’s complicity in this coverup? What if we knew the truth?
- What if an editorial writer from this celebrated media site had not been charmed by a wolf in sheep’s clothing and developed a false image, emboldening the soon-to-be dictator to a glorious resurrection? Sixty years later, the long-suffering people of this not-so-far-away island continue to languish in near poverty and oppression. In the WSJ May 28, 2021 edition Letters to the Editor, a political exile from this false paradise shares his umbrage about the hypocrisy around American corporations doing business with the dictators of this “quaint” country. These same CEOs righteously rail against American injustice in the name of equity. According to the letter writer, they ignore the plight of the black Cubans assigned low-level positions compared to their white peers. What if the Gray Lady talked more about this?
The Gray Lady is a central figure but not alone in telling tall tales of influence. Stay tuned for the next installment.