By Craig Funston
I’m sure we would all agree that the ISIS is an out-of-control killing machine. Any civilized society on planet earth is horrified and terrified at the ongoing sadism that ISIS conducts on a daily basis.
But I would add that I am also stupified at the serious inconsistency of the modern press (here I go again) on this side of the Atlantic. They rarely, if ever, report the same sort of of sadism that is taking place here in North America, likewise on a daily basis.
Assaults, coldblooded killings, rapes, swarmings, kidnappings, thefts, abortions, and abuse—and that’s just a slow news day in Chicago. Okay, slight exaggeration, but you get my point.
Last week I used the term “selective consistency” and it fits here again. Selective consistency is the selective practice of consistently choosing certain angles of the news, while ignoring others. There’s a bias in there, so the listener (or viewer or reader) just gets part of the news story.
Let’s consider briefly what is consistently reported over there, but consistently downplayed back here:
1. There is regular footage of ISIS destroying venerated icons, statues, and artifacts, in their attempt to destroy and wipe out the past. That’s bad, but aren’t we doing that over here, too? I would need many columns to discuss the revisionism in our history books where the record of our past is being destroyed and wiped out regularly. Yet there’s nary a word in the mainstream media. Why the inconsistency?
2. We are appalled at the gross, perverted way ISIS treats women, but what about here? When did you seethe last graphic exposure of how we as a culture treat our women? I’m thinking well beyond the sex trade; I suggest any form of the real abuse of women should be consistently reported.
Despite the feigned hue and cry coming from the left–and feminism, in particular– women are clearly worse off today than ever before. Shouldn’t our media “friends” make that a public issue? We need to be aware of genuine injustices, with the challenge to do something about it.
3. Thanks to social media (though not me; I can’t handle it), we are well aware of the mass executions, the patented brutality, and the torture and maiming, that ISIS carries out. I would challenge the media and its groupies to rise to their responsibility and consistently report the same sort of news stateside.
Should there be accurate and balanced broadcasting (here I go again) of the butchering of babies? What about the anarchy in the cities of armed black men attacking police? Speaking of police, why is there so limited reporting when they are killed on the job? What about the masses of black young people when they riot in malls? And where’s the story when a young white couple is swarmed and beaten? ISIL is despicable, but we have issues here that warrant equal time and space on broadcasts.
4. We’re outraged and sickened by what ISIS does, but our own history as global citizens is nothing to brag about. In some cases, there were more people killed in one day over here than whatever ISIS has done over there in its total existence.
ISIS is just a very convenient (and deadly) whipping boy for the slanted and inconsistent media that spellbinds us all. They are evil and their misdeeds should be exposed, no question. It’s bad over there, but its very bad over here. It’s just reported differently. We need a consistent news source that reports fairly and squarely.
So the news on ISIS is another great example of selective inconsistency. But ultimately, the challenge is for you to rise above that. Recognize the weakness in the style and perspective of the media. You need to have discerning ears and eyes.
Don’t believe everything you hear and read. Check it out yourself. Examine all the evidence. Don’t fall for the slick drama and smooth voices. The truth is out there, to be sure, somewhere between a desert rogue in Iraq and an unemployed punk in St. Louis.
Selective inconsistency falls somewhere between never-been-this-bad and all-is-just-wonderful. In fact, today’s column is a life lesson for all to apply those principles to all news, everywhere.
And speaking of this column, go ahead and ask some hard questions about it: Is it balanced? Is fair? Is it true? And I would even add a fourth question: Is is consistent?
I do not pretend to be a news source, though I am a bit of an information source. And while you may not always agree with me, at least I’m not selective in my inconsistency.