The Media_ Revealed or Criticized_ Essay
Although Gibbon presents an adequate amount of information on how the media is responsible for the loss of public heroes, he fails to inform the reader of the positive acknowledgment that some media give to celebrities or potential heroes. He presents a lot of comments about well-known people, but it solely supports his own opinion. My first question was, “Is this acceptable evidence?” With him only presenting the negative feedback from the press and media, makes this more of an opinion article rather than factual. He isn’t particularly saying that the media is bad, but that their central topics are insignificant to an educated society.
I don’t believe he supported his thesis very well, because this article did not have enough evidence to prove the fact that Media is the cause of loss of public heroes. Overall, he does support his opinion with evidence from reporters admitting to their actions such as “The reporter used to gain status by dinning with his subjects; now he gains status by dinning on them” (Gibbon 236) quoted by New York writer Adam Gopnik. He claims he doesn’t mean to speak poorly of the media, but this is a bit hypocritical of him because he is potentially bashing the media in his piece “End of Admiration”.
Gibbon presents what he has interpreted from the Medias judgment on people such as Thomas Jefferson, Mother Teresa, George Bush, Dan Quayle and Gerald Ford. Although, he did not present any information on who and how the media had given them a poor reputation. He throws in things like the name of the biography for Mother Teresa but none for the other four. It would have been more effective if he gave us some background of how the media had reported anything foul. He also threw in how former presidents were made a fool of such as Lincoln, Jefferson and Washington. It’s more or less petty things such as Lincoln being “effeminate”, Bush vomiting, or even something as foolish as Lincoln being portrayed as a baboon by a cartoonist. Not only that, but who is to say that it is not true?
He also presents the idea that media focuses on news that should not be as important to the public as the media portrays it. He grabs the reader’s attention by involving the youth of society and convinces us by saying that our children have such immediate access to the internet and television yet, its topics that should not be presented to them. He says how “The media has a liberal bias, but its central bias towards bad news.
Accidents, crimes, conflict and scandals are interesting. Normality is boring” (Gibbon 235). He has a good point, and explains well how it makes us suspicious and fearful of the world around us. It also makes us overestimate the chances of these things happening. But, who’s to say this is a bad thing? Don’t we want to prepare our children for the worst and present them with real live situations?
Gibbon does display very sufficient information on how reporters do abuse the fact that they have the potential to make or break a reputation. He uses very good sources such as Veteran of the Washington Post’s Roger Rosenblatt and ABC’s News senior editor Pierre Salinger. They both have negative feed on how they, as part of the media, report the unfortunate information rather than information favorable to the person or situation. He mentions how journalists and reporters are greedy and accept bribes to be dishonest to either make or break a person’s reputation. This would have been an excellent way to prove his point if he provided evidence of a situation where this was proven to be true.
I believe that Gibbon did not support his thesis or his title of the article. I found that this article conveys more of the idea that the media is sometimes dishonest and focuses on the bad rather than the good. His thesis was more or less the point that the media is the culprit of the loss of public heroes. He only presents this in his first paragraph thoroughly, the rest of the article was about the media and how it exaggerates situations. I believe he could have done a much better job tying his idea of loss of public heroes to the media.
I do find that Gibbon proved his point to some extent, although he could have used more evidence to support his opinion on how reporters are dishonest. The media is indeed giving proof for their findings, regardless if it’s true. He could have done some things differently, such as giving moreevidence in more important points he made.
He also should have presented some information on how the media is good. I found this piece to be a bit hypocritical because he only provides evidence of the negative effects of media rather than the positive. This is hypocritical to me because of the fact that he is presenting his opinion on how media is the loss of public heroes, yet he’s giving them a bad reputation when they could possibly be potential heroes themselves. Gibbon presents his information in an organized matter but should focus more on facts and evidence rather than his own opinion and people who favor it.