Public Awareness Of Racism, Or Racially Motivated Violence Essay

Public Awareness Of Racism, Or Racially Motivated Violence Essay

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Zheng’s research only further supports this suspicion of media’s role in raising public awareness of racism, or racially motivated violence. As Zheng notes, “...instances of everyday racism are only reported on if famous people are involved...The public has become...jaded with cases like these and the repeated media coverage of only high profile cases neither mitigates the everyday realities of racial profiling nor makes a difference in our society’s views on these issues (Zheng, Racial Profiling and the Media, berkley.edu).” Of course, the effective result of this is that the widespread influence of racism on American society, in its most common, every day occurences, goes unaddressed. Racism and the challenges of addressing it in the average American’s lives go comparatively unnoticed by the media, when compared to instances where celebrities say racist things, or when race-related conflicts lead to a riot. As Zheng further notes
“The media tends to only cover those sensational cases and ignore the everyday ones (Zheng, berkley.edu).” =============
Meyers further researched TV news coverage of violence against African American women in Atlanta, Georgia, during the 1990’s (Meyers, 95). The trends that Meyers noticed were astonishing, and continue to beg question of, not whether showing the public images of dead black bodies will allow them to interpret, and come to terms with, racially motivated violence—but how the public will come to terms with these black lives lost. As Meyers points out, these were the following trends of coverage in Atlanta, during this time (and Atlanta is by no means the only example or exceptional to the trends, in terms of its local news coverage). According to Meyers: =============

“News cover...


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... be used carefully. As a solution to its misuse, it must be used by a media that is critical of its own bias, and considerate of the fact, opinions, and perspectives of the public. It cannot simply assume the role of a dispensary for ideas and opinions about racially motivated violence in the United States, but must take part in facilitating a broader, more comprehensive, critical dialogue about even the most common occurances of racially motivated violence. Under no conditions, whatsoever, can media merely cover sensational stories of racism, or contribute to degrading, racist stereotypes, and and then claim to be helping society progress through a period of national mourning. Ratings and entertainment value behind the coverage of lost black lives cannot become the primary motive for medias involvement in periods of prolongued, national mourning. =============

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