As I watched various morning news shows today, I was once again baffled by the coverage of celebrity legal woes. Not because of the story lines, but because of the way the stories were covered.
I watched as anchors went into great detail about Michael Vick, his indictment, and how horrific the charges were against him. There was no tone of innocent until proven guilty, or even a “let’s see what his side of the story is first.” Instead, he was demonized, the NFL was praised for asking him not to come to training camp, and a couple of expert guests even went so far as to say they were “almost certain” he was guilty of something.
Then, within the same block of news, came Lindsay Lohan with her DUI arrest and cocaine possession. This time, not only was there sympathy in the tone of the anchors, but one even referred to her as a “troubled young lady that needed the public support.” Okay, but not only is this Lohan’s second arrest, she just left rehab.
I find it absolutely amazing that two alleged criminal acts could be covered with such different tones. In a country where the news organizations are supposed to remain unbiased, it is consistently evident that this is not the case. I am not sure whether this biased coverage was race-related, or if our tolerance as a nation is distorted. Does the life of an animal really weigh more than the potential harm to a person? I also wonder if the coverage would have been different if Lindsay’s actions had caused bodily harm to a person. But then I remember – it shouldn’t make a difference in the way the news is reported.
The charges against Vick and Lohan are both terrible. And as an educated consumer of the news, I would like the opportunity to draw my own conclusions about both situations, without biased reporting.
If you want to read more about Michael Vick or Lindsay Lohan check out these links:
That’s it for me today. Let me know what you think.
Towanda Long, The Café Lady