Israeli journalist’s political plans cause controversy

By REBECCA LATTANZIO

In America, we make it pretty clear that journalists are supposed to keep their views on politics out of the media. Commentators and shows like Fox’s Bill O’Reilly are a different monster all together and often blur the line between reporting and commenting. As student journalists, we are taught that these aforementioned programs are not unbiased classic journalism, but rather meant for entertainment purposes. The use of journalist blogs also raises major questions of how much professional journalists should include their own opinions even in personal posts and content. With these issues constantly arising in the modern journalism world, I began to wonder whether they were as prevalent in other countries.

Haaretz is one of Israel’s most prominent newspapers and regularly covers some of the worlds most dangerous war zones. They recently posted an article about one of Israel’s most well-known broadcast journalists, Yair Lapid. Lapid spoke to an audience of more than 250 people and shared his views on the necessary steps for a successful future in Israeli government. Lapid’s plans included establishing a constitution, preserving core curriculum, and changing the government system. Lapid’s comments sparked major controversy by other media-members who said if he should either stick to objective reporting or go into politics all-together. Lapid’s father was a career politician and the article reports that Lapid himself considered starting a secularist party.

A story like this makes you wonder if someone with this much political opinion and, arguably, ambition is capable of providing unbiased and uninfluenced news to viewers that need it. Obviously all of our perspectives and background affect us as journalists, such as where you grew up, whether you are male or female, or your age, but at what point does this begin to interfere too much with the job?

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