Saturday, October 2, 2010

Can't We All Just Play Nice?

One of the big topics right now in the media business is the dismissal of CNN's Rick Sanchez after he went on a satellite radio show and called Daily Show host Jon Stewart a bigot, and criticized the role of Jews in the media, saying as a group Jews do not experience derision like other minority groups.

I may be a complete and total journalism newbie, and this deals with TV news which is not my specialty, but I have to say that to me, Sanchez's remarks are no better than elementary school taunting, and I for one am glad that Jon Stewart is just refusing the play (the Daily Show has declined to release a statement about Sanchez's remarks.)

Stewart's New Book
Sanchez went on air and mistook the Galapagos Islands for Hawaii when covering the Chilean Earthquake that occurred in February 2010. He made a factual error which he should take ownership of, its not ok for journalists to not know what they are talking about, and its really not ok to give misinformation. It also wasn't the first instance of Sanchez making a factual error. So Jon Stewart called him out and made fun of him for it. Deal with it, that is what the Daily Show does.

The concept behind the show is pointing out the inadequacies in media, politics, science, etc. A lot of "rich white guys" have been called out by Jon Stewart too, he didn't highlight Sanchez's error because he's hispanic, he highlighted it because it was an unacceptable mistake. To say that Stewart did it because he's a bigot just shows that Sanchez is also ill-informed as to what the Daily Show does.

The other half of Sanchez's argument - that Jews in the media have all the power - really? Because no one has ever heard that one before. Get over it. Its like arguing on the playground because someone has a better toy than you do. So someone has a better toy than you Rick Sanchez, be creative and maybe you could have more fun instead of lamenting that fancy toy. But no, you decide to whine about it. Because people will respect you more for taking the low road (sarcasm intended.)

Here's a fun idea, how about instead of accusing someone of being a racist every time they point out that you made a mistake, you rise above and be better? Stop making mistakes. Don't give anyone fodder to try to take you down with. The media and the public would be better off. No one wants to hear about how the kids on the playground were mean to you.

Lisa de Moraes' article in the Washington Post about the Sanchez-Stewart incident: CNN's Rick Sanchez Fired After Explosive Interview on Satellite Radio. 

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