Any Communication Student Can Tell You That Journalism Is Ineffective Without Non-Partisanship

Any Communication Student Can Tell You That Journalism Is Ineffective Without Non-Partisanship

Bias eliminates credibility.
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Journalism is a word that everyone should be familiar with.

It is the distribution of news via various media platforms or outlets. It comes in the form of newspapers, television shows, websites, and other forms.

In these modern times, we are all thinking about journalism much more than we used to as a society. This is because the credibility of news reporting seems to be dwindling for many, especially Americans. It is something that is being discussed in increasing amounts along with the emergence of “fake news.”

The key element in all of this is non-partisanship; the lack of bias prevalent in news resources.

Ever since U.S. President Donald Trump rose to prominence within the media, mainstream journalism has come under scrutiny by his supporters. Trump has singled out many news outlets such as CNN and the New York Times as “fake news,” or news that is false or disparaging. His supporters followed suit, calling out certain news outlets as untrustworthy and biased.

The mainstream media has undergone a notable shift in dynamics since Trump announced his bid for president. He received extensive news coverage from many media outlets to the point of omnipresence due to his unorthodox statements and comments.

Many news outlets gave Trump near-unprecedented attention while largely ignoring the other political candidates in comparison. Trump received his fair share of criticism for his political ideas, but the controversies of the other candidates were brushed off and ignored by some.

This is an example of bias, which should never be in journalism.

A journalist’s goal is to state the facts while avoiding giving personal opinions.

The controversy surrounding President Trump has only scratched the surface of the bias that is prevalent in our modern society. The presence of bias in certain American news media has disillusioned many of its residents, but there are methods that can restore public faith in the media.

Perhaps the most effective way that a news anchor can appeal to everyone is by stating the facts of a story. This is standard procedure for journalists, but its importance must be stressed.

Refraining from giving opinions helps keep credibility in check.

Outlets such as CNN and Fox News have used specific tones in their reporting when covering certain stories and have used different tones when reporting about other topics or figures.

In addition, some media outlets tend to focus heavily on one side of an issue and seemingly ignore the other. This is most prevalent when reporting on politics. This can give the impression that these reporters have a certain level of bias towards a particular side. Everyone can catch on with the media if it displays a strong degree of non-partisanship, especially regarding the mainstream.

The future of journalism may be looking increasingly bleak with the continued dissent among the public, along with the bias that is present in some news and media outlets. However, if all journalists and anchors realize that non-partisanship is the key to gaining trust among the public, this situation may take a significantly better turn.

Cover Image Credit: flickr

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This Is How Your Same-Sex Marriage Affects Me As A Catholic Woman

I hear you over there, Bible Bob.
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It won't.

Wait, what?

I promise you did read that right. Not what you were expecting me to say, right? Who another person decides to marry will never in any way affect my own marriage whatsoever. Unless they try to marry the person that I want to, then we might have a few problems.

As a kid, I was raised, baptized, and confirmed into an old school Irish Catholic church in the middle of a small, midwestern town.

Not exactly a place that most people would consider to be very liberal or open-minded. Despite this I was taught to love and accept others as a child, to not cast judgment because the only person fit to judge was God. I learned this from my Grandpa, a man whose love of others was only rivaled by his love of sweets and spoiling his grandkids.

While I learned this at an early age, not everyone else in my hometown — or even within my own church — seemed to get the memo. When same-sex marriage was finally legalized country-wide, I cried tears of joy for some of my closest friends who happen to be members of the LGBTQ community.

I was happy while others I knew were disgusted and even enraged.

"That's not what it says in the bible! Marriage is between a man and a woman!"

"God made Adam and Eve for a reason! Man shall not lie with another man as he would a woman!"

"Homosexuality is a sin! It's bad enough that they're all going to hell, now we're letting them marry?"

Alright, Bible Bob, we get it, you don't agree with same-sex relationships. Honestly, that's not the issue. One of our civil liberties as United States citizens is the freedom of religion. If you believe your religion doesn't support homosexuality that's OK.

What isn't OK is thinking that your religious beliefs should dictate others lives.

What isn't OK is using your religion or your beliefs to take away rights from those who chose to live their life differently than you.

Some members of my church are still convinced that their marriage now means less because people are free to marry whoever they want to. Honestly, I wish I was kidding. Tell me again, Brenda how exactly do Steve and Jason's marriage affect yours and Tom's?

It doesn't. Really, it doesn't affect you at all.

Unless Tom suddenly starts having an affair with Steve their marriage has zero effect on you. You never know Brenda, you and Jason might become best friends by the end of the divorce. (And in that case, Brenda and Tom both need to go to church considering the bible also teaches against adultery and divorce.)

I'll say it one more time for the people in the back: same-sex marriage does not affect you even if you or your religion does not support it. If you don't agree with same-sex marriage then do not marry someone of the same sex. Really, it's a simple concept.

It amazes me that I still actually have to discuss this with some people in 2017. And it amazes me that people use God as a reason to hinder the lives of others.

As a proud young Catholic woman, I wholeheartedly support the LGBTQ community with my entire being.

My God taught me to not hold hate so close to my heart. He told me not to judge and to accept others with open arms. My God taught me to love and I hope yours teaches you the same.

Disclaimer - This article in no way is meant to be an insult to the Bible or religion or the LGBTQ community.

Cover Image Credit: Sushiesque / Flickr

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As A Member Of Democracy, It's My Duty To Be An Election Judge

Conducting a fair and fast election is critical to a healthy democracy, and that's why I volunteer.

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As you may or may not have known, Chicago had a historic election on April 2, 2019.

As a result, we have elected our first black woman and first LGBTQ person as Mayor of Chicago. Moreover, we managed to potentially turn City Council one-tenth democratic socialist.

Regardless of how you feel about Tuesday's outcome, it was most certainly historic. But a lot of people don't really know who makes sure that elections like these run smoothly and free from outside influences: election judges.

The April 2 election was my fourth election judging. What an election judge essentially does is help check in voters, make sure everyone has a smooth experience voting and making sure that everyone and everything is in order at the polls.

It sounds easy, right? Yeah, you could argue that it is. After you survive the 4-hour training and the 15-hour work day beginning at 4 a.m., it's actually a pretty easy job that gets you an easy $220.

The task sounds daunting and might even trivial, as you're essentially a customer representative for your local government.

But for me, being an election judge was never about the money or waking up at the butt crack of dawn: it was about facilitating local democracy.

I'm not going to lie: it really does feel like hell on earth waking up at 4 a.m. to work an election that typically has paltry turnout. Moreover, on April 2 I started a whole new set of classes at DePaul (we use a quarter system), so it was also hard getting acclimated to that alone.

But without election judges, there would be no one there to stop shady things from going on as you exercise your right to vote. No one shoving mailers in your face both inside and outside. No one to stop anyone from tampering with ballots for your favorite candidate. No one to make sure no one harasses you for exercising your constitutional right to vote your conscience.

Democracy is a very problematic system, but only because not a lot of people partake in it. As an election judge, though it's a daunting, day-long obligation, it's my duty to make sure that democracy retains its importance, credibility, and that everyone participates in a safe and cordial way.

So, the next time you go out and vote, thank an election judge for their service. It may seem silly, but judges are seldom mentioned when it comes to guardians of democracy.

In fact, maybe even consider being one yourself. Because after all, we're all in this thing together.

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