Personally Speaking by Sam Person

America’s media outlets are something the nation can generally be proud of, except for occasions when there have been periods of departures from responsible journalism.

Our tradition of Freedom of the Press had roots in the courageous work of John Peter Zenger – who arguably was the major force in establishing that tradition. In late 1733, he began publishing a newspaper in New York for the purpose of voicing opposition to the onerous policies of the newly appointed colonial governor. Zenger was tried for “seditious libel,” and was found not guilty – clearly a victory for the free press.

In the intervening centuries, we have had journalists in the mold of Zenger – Edward R. Murrow is one who comes mind. And, of course, we have had those who are the complete opposite, such as William Randolph Hearst.

But never before have we witnessed a class of journalists who have so prostituted themselves and so diminished their profession as to effectively become a collective house organ for a sitting President of the United States.

The totally dedicated, unquestioning, and inappropriate support of Barack Obama by the so-called “mainstream media” began with his candidacy and continues to this very day.

Not only does the media trumpet Obama and effectively cover for him, the general approach has been to denigrate any disagreement his opponents have with him on matters of policy. Further, when Obama misspeaks (as politicians do), little (if anything) is made of it. When an opponent misspeaks, it becomes a major news item.

Certainly, the media’s pulling for Obama is evidence of the covering up of events, which should more appropriately be examined “in the sunlight.” While examples are easy to find, two recent episodes should be noted. First, there is the case known as “Fast and Furious,” in which the federal government’s role in a serious matter dealing with illicit and reckless use of weapons has come into question.

More recently, the circumstances under which a substantial federal loan was made to a “solar energy” company have created a major stir, particularly since the company filed for bankruptcy. This happened as President Obama was “hawking” for more aid to “green energy” companies under the guise of creating jobs.

It can be said that if such events occurred in previous administrations, there would have been substantially more media questioning and outrage.

Then again, there should be no surprise that the mainstream media looks the other way on matters involving Barack Obama and his administration. After all, they have essentially given unprecedented support to a man they knew next to nothing about when he suddenly appeared on the presidential campaign scene a scant few years back.

As matters gear up for the 2012 elections, the media will perform an historical disservice to America by the extent to which honest reporting and questioning has been replaced by cheerleading. All that is missing is for the majority of media representatives to wave pom-poms at Obama presentations between now and November 2012.

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