I have a post semi about journalism that I shall write soon, but first I just need to convey my frustration with the news media (again), particularly about their coverage on the health care debates.
News should inform, right now all the American public is getting is a bunch of images and sound bites of people yelling at each other. I am sure that there is some great debates going on in some of the townhalls, but all of that is drowned out by a few loonies who want to spread hate and lies about health care reform.
If it isn’t already completely obvious, I am on the side of health care reform. I think most of the arguments against reform is blatant lies and too often completely displaced from health care. As much as I think civil discourse is a healthy component of living in a republic, I also think telling the truth is more important, and debating on the facts instead of reaching out into thin air and reciting what they want you to say. Drowning debate (which some of the screamers are trying to achieve) is wrong and I will go out on a limb and say such tactics are unAmerican. Everyone deserves to be heard. Even the loonies, but not in a disproportionate amount of time.
The news media should not be completely focused on the yelling and the protesting, but it should mostly cover the substance of the arguments, but the fact that someone is arguing. What are both sides saying, and what do the facts, as much as they exist say about the arguments. We should not be fueling the flames of discontent, but facilitate the American people’s understanding of the debate taking place.
The American health care system right now is more expensive than it needs to be, and less able to protect. It is a for-profit venture, and the goals of health and profit do not always go together. There is a lot to be sorted out for reform, but saying it’s unnecessary is not a valid response.
It’s just the fear of the unknown that is stopping this debate.