One of the duties of journalists—both print and electronic—is to be appropriately skeptical of statements made by those who seek the attention of the reading and viewing public. Journalists are perfectly capable of doing this provided, of course, the individual in question is a conservative, Christian, or Republican. In fact, with conservatives, Christians, and Republicans journalists can be not just appropriately skeptical—they can be obnoxious, rude, and contentious. Clearly, mainstream journalists are guilty of applying a double standard depending on who the speaker happens to be.
When questioning people who refuse to toe the line of liberal orthodoxy, journalists often behave like prosecuting attorneys or, worse yet, angry little brats in a snit. But let the speaker be a liberal black leader—say Al Sharpton for example—and journalists who are supposed to be appropriately skeptical suddenly become sheepishly docile and blindly accepting. As a result, Sharpton and company get away with making some of the most outlandish claims imaginable; claims that go unchallenged by journalists who don’t dare put aside their tacitly agreed to double standard. The double standard mainstream journalists apply when dealing with liberal black leaders is not just unprofessional, it is blatantly biased. Worse yet, it does nothing to help black Americans who find themselves indirectly associated with those who make the ridiculous statements whether they agree with them or not.
When conservative commentator Walter Williams published his first book, The State Against Blacks, a press conference was called to introduce the author and the book. Williams surprised participating journalists by demanding they treat him like a “white man.” By this he meant they should ask him difficult questions, disagree with him, and even demand that he validate his opinions with facts. Several books and hundreds of columns later, Williams no longer has to demand that he be treated like anyone else by journalists. Now that the mainstream media is familiar with his conservative views, Williams gets the same obnoxious treatment journalists give anyone who questions the liberal agenda.
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