And what it does say without saying that it says it etc …

Posted: March 2, 2010 in Uncategorized

“Promoting a greater understanding and appreciation of Christian values in the media…”

That’s the first aim of the Family and Media Association, FMA. But, what does it mean? Well, God is Truth, The Truth. Is it not the first duty of the media, then, to speak the truth, to speak it boldly, to shed light on the darkness? That’s the way it seems it should be to me, anyway.

However, all too often, the media seems to busy itself shoveling darkness where there is light rather than shining light where there is darkness. This is a kind of parody of its true identity. To quote Archbishop Diarmuid Martin when he spoke at a Family and Media Association conference — it was some years ago and in a slightly different context — “there is no truth (Pravda) in the news (Izvestia).”

Sometimes, it’s just a question of basic inaccuracy: for example, reporting that there were 100’s instead of 1,000’s at a pro-life rally. You would think that this kind of lie should be fairly easy to detect, but, in fact, it is used more often now as people become more and more dumbed down and well, indoctrinated, by ‘the media’ and what passes for our education system. Is it any surprise that employers should complain of highly qualified job applicants being all at sea when someone asks them to solve a problem.

Then there is the media’s version of a ‘sin of omission’: not reporting something that is news worthy. If a story falls in a forest and the media aren’t there to hear it, does it make a sound bite? No. If it’s not reported, it might as well not have happened. And if one side of the scéal is not seen, then it can look very lopsided indeed. Plenty of examples here…a pro abortion academic implies that a pro life pregnancy counselling agency is making “rogue” claims about the risks of abortion (to the mother, the risks to her child are almost 100% after all!) but there is no reference to the extranational Supreme Court that takes the claims so seriously, it insists on abortion ‘providers’ providing their victims with the information that the media here has tried so hard to discredit!

The sin of omission is difficult to spot.  Your only chance is to have been ‘in the forest’ when the story fell. Otherwise, you can’t check the facts because you don’t suspect there are any facts to check! “As all journalists know,” to quote Gene Kerrigan when talking about the “( media) Job done on Irish” for Lisbon, “what mattered was not frank opinion but what wasn’t reported and how material was skewed.”

If  all this weren’t bad enough, the worst thing is that if you were there to see the story fall and you tell people about it, you either won’t be believed because, well, the honest brokers that are the media establishment in Ireland would have reported it if it had happened and even if it did happen, well, it can’t have been a very important tree (certainly not the tree of the knowledge of good and evil!) if  (the honest brokers that are the media establishment in Ireland) didn’t report it. Heads you win, tails I lose!

Anyway, I think this is beginning to get a bit negative. That’s enough for a first day…

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