posted on Jun, 9 2004 @ 05:48 AM
A very interesting comparison, Mr. Bullock. I would agree with your interpretation of the articles in question - the faint but detectable innocence
of Bryant, and the presumption of guilt in the cases of Peterson and Jackson.
I do believe that legislation should be introduced to prevent any news or media outlet from presenting unfair and unbalanced information regarding an
upcoming trial. The problem is, of course, that as soon as we introduce said legislation, every single trial will be stuck in appeal hell while
overpaid lawyers argue that some one-column story in the Puckville Echo prejudged the defendant. The solution, to my mind, is to appoint an
independant regulator who would monitor every single broadcast, and issue warnings and punishments to networks which violated the rules.
I would also observe that these companies employ extremely dedicated and talented individuals to decide on their editorial line. You can be damn sure
that if CNN is advocating Bryant's innocence, it is because the best brains they employ have judged that he is innocent. Equally, if they
condemning Michael Jackson, it's because -
Well, come on. That case in particular is a no-brainer, isn't it?
Finally, I think there's an interesting extension to your observation. In high-profile criminal cases, the judgement of the media is often more
important, more lasting and more damaging than anything which comes from a court of law. Take OJ Simpson - the court may have found him innocent, but
ask any person in the street and see what they say.
In the end, I suppose the only defense we have against this type of trial-by-media is our own intelligence, skepticism and wit. Once you accept that
everything you get from CNN is biased, things become a lot clearer.
Thanks for the links and an interesting topic!