Readers respond to Bob Garfield’s interview with Editor and Publisher of the Portland Press Herald from last week’s show.
To paraphrase Anderson Cooper in connection with his recent CNN interview of Renee Ellmers, Republican Congressional hopeful from North Carolina, it's the essential role of a journalist to elicit information and point out innaccurate and misleading claims. That's exactly what Bob Garfield did in the Press Herald segment. It's especially important as 'controversy' threatens to overtake an issue. Sad to say but journalists who truly live up to the name are increasingly rare in the current climate. Bob's interview made me cheer out loud.
When I heard the interview by Bob Garfield last week with the editor of the paper who apologized for covering Ramadan without "balancing" it with coverage of 911, I was cheering Bob Garfield. People who objected to this interview (as described on this morning's broadcast) appear to be motivated by an anti-Islamic bias themselves, because there was nothing Garfield did besides read back to the editor what was written in his newspaper. The editor was clearly upset, and responded in a regressed, immature way, while insisting that Garfield take his current statement of reality rather than go by the printed record. Garfield did his job. Period.
Is coverage of Easter balanced by information about pogroms and violence against the Jews? As an atheist I would love to see the myth of Christmas balanced by the historical information about Saturnalia and Winter Solstice celebrations.
Are articles about Christmas "balanced" by some Christians' anti-human rights (anti-gay) stance? Are articles about the High Holy Days "balanced" by information about settlements in disputed territories? Of course not! Articles about Ramadan should be just that, then, articles about how the locals are celebrating.
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