Thursday, May 22, 2008

Immigration myths on cable TV

Check out Media Matters Action Network for a very cool article on the ways in which cable commentators—specifically Lou Dobbs, Bill O’Reilly, and Glenn Beck—use their bully pulpits to spread myths about immigration: “cable news overflows not just with vitriol, but also with a series of myths that feed viewers' resentment and fears, seemingly geared toward creating anti-immigrant hysteria.”

Reading it will seriously curdle your liver. It focuses on specific myths: that immigrants commit more crimes; that there is a plot to create a NAFTA Superhighway that will destroy the country by leading to a North American Union; that Mexicans have a Reconquista plot to take back what was lost in 1848; that undocumented immigrants commit massive voter fraud; and that undocumented immigrants are spreading leprosy.

You just have to read the quotes from these shows, which are shocking in their intentional spread of false information and xenophobia. Obviously, I knew people like Lou Dobbs were focusing on immigration, but the actual things they say are mind blowing.


schiller1979 8:56 AM  

Anyone who looks to entertainers for news, rather than to journalists, won't get journalism.

Greg Weeks 12:55 PM  

The problem is that the line between the two is often so blurred.

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