West grabs news focus from Michael


Throughout this week, news coverage has been pretty much all over the place. From Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation to hurricane coverage and seemingly everywhere in between, this week has been a mess.

On Wednesday, the primary story was a category 4 hurricane rolling through the panhandle of Florida and seemingly destroying everything in its path. Today, you would expect that the coverage would continue with details and images from the aftermath. Instead, today the main story was Kanye West meeting with President Donald Trump at the White House.

Are you kidding me? People lost their homes, their family members, or their work for the next couple of years and CNN and others are concerned about what was said between the president and Kanye West. Not only is it irresponsible, its grossly unfair to the people who have friends and family impacted by the storm.

On top of this, we have recent hurricane coverage (Florence) to compare to, a hurricane where CNN had vast coverage in all three phases of the storm: before, during and after. The coverage for Michael has been minimize because, apparently, the president meeting with a celebrity is far more pressing and concerning news for our country.

Taylor Swift encourages fans to vote


On Sunday, Oct. 7, Taylor Swift took to Instagram to show her support for the Democratic Party. Swift, a Tennessee resident, endorsed Phil Bredesen and Jim Cooper, who are running for U.S. Senate and House of Representatives in the upcoming midterm elections.

At the same time, Swift condemned Bredesen’s senate race rival, Republican Marsha Blackburn, saying the politician’s voting record “appalls and terrifies” her.

Swift, who has kept to herself regarding politics in the past, did not shy away from voicing her opinion this time around.

Swift concluded her post with a plea to her fans urging them to register to vote before the upcoming deadline, as well as educate themselves on current issues and the candidates who are running in their states.

According to VOTE.org, there was a significant increase in voter registration after Swift’s post. However, CNN and The Washington Post pointed out that there is usually an influx of people registering to vote right before the deadline, so it is difficult to completely credit Swift with that.

An article from The Atlantic downplayed the power of Swift’s message, saying that it has generated too much press for it being just a basic message and that fans are just caught up in her celebrity.

On Tuesday, Oct. 9, Swift took the opportunity to voice her political opinion yet again at the American Music Awards while accepting the award for artist of the year.

“I just wanted to make a mention of the fact that this award and every single award given out tonight were voted on by the people. And you know what else is voted on by the people? The midterm elections on Nov. 6. Get out and vote,” she said.

No urgency found in climate news


The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) released a report on Monday about the impact that will occur if global warming reaches an additional 1.5 degrees C.

The Summary for Policymakers emphasized the drastic, unprecedented change that will have to occur if we wish to avoid utter ‘climate catastrophe’ by 2030.

While most news outlets did well in the actual articles covering the report, problems arise in regard to the importance it was given in comparison to other stories of the day. An issue such as this impacts the entire world.

Climate change doesn’t discriminate based on political preference, race, or gender. It impacts everyone and therefore should be what every news outlet is discussing today.

Instead, many news outlets such as CNN, MSNBC, and Fox News focused their coverage on the Kavanaugh confirmation and, ironically, Hurricane Michael.

The way in which news outlets prioritize stories heavily plays into what their audience is and isn’t knowledgeable about. Therefore, putting articles about the IPCC’s pivotal report, puts consumers in a position where they’re less inclined to be informed about the stakes we’re up against as a planet.

News outlets’ intentions may simply be to attract as many viewers as possible. Subsequently, leading them to focus more on immediate issues in society such as the Kavanaugh confirmation.

Regardless of the motive, I still maintain that it is the responsibility of news media to deliver to Americans, and society at large, coverage of the most pressing issues. And I’m uncertain what could be more pressing than sustaining the thing that is the sole reason for our existence.

Kavanaugh coverage impartial, eager


With the first round of voting expected Friday for the potential confirmation for U.S. Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh, news media coverage has been rather objective and very much anxious to see what will unfold on Capitol Hill.

In the meantime, Kavanaugh penned an op-ed for The Wall Street Journal on Thursday criticizing what he described as “vicious” attacks against him while admitting he “might have been too emotional” during his hearing on Capitol Hill last week.

Of course, it didn’t take long for the news media to jump on this breaking story.

CNN’s headline read: “Kavanaugh writes op-ed arguing he is an ‘independent, impartial judge’ after emotional testimony”

While Fox News’s headline read: “Kavanaugh, in op-ed, decries ‘vicious’ attacks while saying he ‘might have been too emotional’ at hearing'”

To the naked eye, it seems both were written without much subjectivity to the subject matter, even though both are known for favoring one side of the scale over the other.

Once the U.S. Senate meets tomorrow in Washington, news outlets are sure to jump on the voting results as soon as humanly possible.

Ford’s credibility called into question


Dr. Christine Blasey Ford, the first woman to come forward and accuse Judge Brett Kavanaugh of sexual assault, has been believed by many to be a credible witness during her hearing in front of the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee.

Now, her credibility is being called into question, as a letter from her former boyfriend, Brian Merrick, was released to the public this week.

The letter, written under penalty of perjury, contradicts a number of Ford’s claims from the hearing. If such claims are true, Ford may face the possibility of being tried for lying under oath.

The former boyfriend claims that he witnessed Ford assist a “life-long best friend,” Monica McLean, prepare for a polygraph test. Merrick stated, “I witnessed Dr. Ford help McLean prepare for a potential polygraph exam. Dr. Ford explained in detail what to expect, how polygraphs worked, and helped McLean become familiar and less nervous about the exam.”

This is contrary to Ford’s sworn statement that she had never assisted in a polygraph test. McLean denied these claims in a recently released statement.  

Other claims by Merrick include that Ford never admitted to having a fear of flying and that upon the ending of their relationship, due to her infidelity, she stole his credit card information and charged “about $600 worth of merchandise” to his account. In her sworn testimony, Ford claimed to have a fear of flying.

The letter has been largely overshadowed in the mainstream media by President Donald Trump’s disbelief of Ford while at a campaign rally in Southaven, Miss. He stated, “How did you get home? I don’t remember. How’d you get there? I don’t remember. Where’s the place? I don’t remember …. But I had one beer. That’s the only thing I remember.”

The vote on whether to confirm Judge Kavanaugh is scheduled this weekend in front of the U.S. Senate.

Covering Kanye West’s ‘SNL’ politics


News media bias was ever-present in the coverage of rapper Kanye West’s comments on “Saturday Night Live” this past weekend.

West embarked upon a length pro-Trump tirade after the show went off-air. His words were, per usual, caught and shared via social media.

He also expressed his opinions on the 13th Amendment first indicating he believes it should be repealed, and later on saying it needs to be amended.


In CNN’s coverage of the event by Lisa Respers France, headlined, “Kanye West stirs more outrage with 13th Amendment, slavery tweets,” the way in which the event is covered is undoubtedly influenced by the outlet’s reputation as a somewhat liberal news media source.

The headline alone makes the article feel as if the event is everyone versus, the villain of the story, West.

France then goes on to exclusively cover just the backlash West received from big stars including Chris Evans, Lana Del Rey, and Swizz Beatz.

On the other end of the spectrum, is Fox News’ article by Katherine Lam, “Chris Evans slams Kanye West’s call to ‘abolish’ the 13th Amendment.”

The headline for this piece is influential as well. It has the opposite effect of CNN’s, portraying Chris Evans, and later on others who criticized West, as the aggressors.

Another indication of Lam’s political leanings are the fact that she not only reports on West’s controversial statements but also includes comments he has made to defend himself.

Through their headlines alone, CNN and Fox News both clearly indicate their position on the comments and overall political opinions regarding President Trump.

Viewers decide about hearing news


After the dust has settled from Thursday’s bouts of interrogation and questioning by the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee to both Christine Blasey Ford and Brett Kavanaugh, how did certain parts of the news media provide coverage to the American people?

Text box captions at the bottom of the TV screen, also called lower-thirds, not only tell viewers what the news is, they say what the network wants them to make of it. In the event of a big news event, they are a way for viewers to peer into the newsroom and see how those different networks interpret what is being said.

During Ford’s testimony, CNN and MSNBC frequently returned to a statement she made saying she was “100%” certain that Kavanaugh was the one who assaulted her.

Fox News mentioned it only once. Those networks also referred several times to Ford’s sentiment that it was her “civic duty” to testify.

During Kavanaugh’s testimony, Fox’s lower thirds changed much more frequently, including several quotes from his emotional opening statement.

CNN and MSNBC frequently referenced a few notable quotes, including “I’ve never sexually assaulted anyone” and “I am innocent of this charge.”

During a 30-minute break around lunchtime, CNN and MSNBC rotated lower-thirds with quotes from Ford’s testimony. Fox News mentioned Ford’s “100 percent” statement but, for most of its coverage during the break, said the hearing had paused.

Although it seems continuity between networks is still a lot to ask for this day in age, viewers have to make a choice themselves as to how to take in what is being conveyed through the screen.

Reporting about Kavanaugh needs work


I have just finished watching the coverage surrounding the Kavanaugh testimony today and the TV coverage has been incredibly lazy. From all the many platforms that people have access to watch the hearings and the commentary from talking heads, the question begs to be asked: what has happened to common decency and due process?

Regardless of whether you believe Kavanaugh or not, the trial by public opinion that has been put on by national news media with little to no facts and reporting based off “tips.” These stories are reckless, dangerous and threatening to someone’s family. They serve little to no purpose other than to portray a narrative that may or not be true.

As well as their inability to cover news correctly and fairly, main stream news media have also failed to wildly report that Sen. Diane Feinstein held on to this information throughout the entire nomination process, even through her one-on-one meeting with Kavanaugh, and never brought it up. Instead, she waited until the 11th hour to come out with this information, right before his Senate vote.

This entire process has been a national embarrassment from start to end and the national news media should be just as ashamed as the senate.

Kavanaugh hearing sparks news frenzy


On Thursday, U.S. Supreme Court nominee Judge Brett Kavanaugh and the first woman to accuse him of sexual assault, Dr. Christine Blasey Ford, testified in front of the U.S. enate Judiciary Committee in Washington, D.C. The hearing lasted almost nine hours.

During her time on the stand, Ford was questioned on the details surrounding her alleged encounter with Kavanaugh when they were both teenagers. Ford claims Kavanaugh attempted to sexually assault her at a party in the early 1980s. Kavanaugh denied these allegations and remains firm that he is innocent.

As one could imagine, the day’s events sparked a news media frenzy. Major news outlets were covering the hearing with minute-by-minute updates, political pundits took to Twitter to voice their opinions and millions of Americans tuned in to watch the story unfold.

As to be expected, there was major division among the more conservative and liberal news networks, such as Fox, CNN and MSNBC regarding who is truly innocent.

However, in a CNN article titled, “How Fox News is covering Christine Blasey Ford’s testimony” instead of defending Kavanaugh as many may expect of Fox, it discusses how the Fox News commentators watching the hearing believed Ford was actually a credible witness.

Also according to CNN, during Ford’s testimony, Judge Andrew Napolitano stated, “The president cannot be happy with this.” Yet, after the hearing, President Donald Trump, who had been watching all day, tweeted, “Judge Kavanaugh showed America exactly why I nominated him. His testimony was powerful, honest, and riveting. Democrats’ search and destroy strategy is disgraceful and this process has been a total sham and effort to delay, obstruct, and resist. The Senate must vote!”

Opioid bill passes in Congress


This country has had an opioid problem that has reached the level of an epidemic. In 2017 there were 72,000 deaths from drug overdoses, while 50,000 of those came from opioids. After years of attempting to address this issue, the U.S. House and Senate have finally compromised on a bill which aims to help those with addiction, as well as stop opioids from being on the streets.

Abby Goodnough from The New York Times wrote an article about this new bill, titled, “In Rare Bipartisan Accord, House and Senate Reach Compromise on Opioid Bill.” In the article, she describes the main elements of the bill and how it is supposed to help people.

What she did a wonderful job of was that she got quotes from a third-party addiction specialist who broke down what will work and not work about the bill. The reason this is so important to do, especially on a subject like this, is that there is so much that goes into this bill that normal people don’t understand. The specialist goes into detail about what she thinks will not work.

The one thing that is not addressed enough is the section titled “alternative to opioids.” This seems like something that should really be focused on, but is the shortest section of the article. she also listed alternative, smaller packaging as an option, which it is not.

I specifically like how the article relates this bill to the AIDS bill that passed in the 1990s, because that was incredibly successful.

This was a quality article, especially because she took a political hot button issue and focused it more on the bill itself.

Maduro eats well, but others starving


Over the last decade, Venezuela has gone deep and deeper into a black hole. The economy has been damaged to an extent that today, Venezuela is facing its darkest poverty phase.

I hope it is just a phase, but as the years go by, hospitals loose more and more medicine, the super market shelves remain empty, and the Venezuelan currency, the Bolivar, continues to lose its value all due to careless government.

This past Monday, President Nicolas Maduro had a feast at “Salt Bae” restaurant in Istanbul. Owned by Celebrity Chef Nusret Gökçe, who is known for his style of seasoning stakes, hung out with the president as Gökçe sliced the meat with his style and spent the day with the president as Maduro smoked cigars.

Not only were people furious back in Venezuela, but once the videos of this get together made it online and on the news, local citizens and Venezuelans went to the famous restaurant to protest against the chef for welcoming the president and his wife Celia Flores.

“I don’t know who this weirdo #Saltbae is but the guy he is so proud to host is not the president of #Venezuela,” tweeted U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio.

The news of this get together traveled fast though out the world and since the the videos have been removed by the chef himself, according to The New York Times.

I don’t think it is right these videos should have been removed because Venezuela’s crisis is real. By removing these videos, people back in Venezuela who support Maduro still believe he is trying to change the country.

People on social media have grieved the losses of children who have died due to starvation, because there is not food available to eat. And if there is food available, a salary a doctor makes is not enough to buy a dozen of eggs or even one piece of bread.

According to a study published by LACSO, found that 87 percent of citizens in Venezuela are facing starvation. People are trying to buy groceries by crossing the border in Colombia or migrate to other countries in South America or whenever they can.

The crisis Venezuela is facing is now more than violence and dangerous protests, but now a starvation matter.

Maduro stated he stopped by the restaurant on his way back from China to “secure financing for the cash-strapped country,” according to CNN. 

Some videos may have been removed, but I am glad CNN and social media outlets are bringing this issue to light because there is still plenty of people who believe Maduro will fix the economic crisis, even though his government is the one destroying the country.

Partisanship rules during confirmation


This past week, the already contentious U.S. Supreme Court confirmation process of nominee Brett Kavanaugh has become embroiled in controversy since allegations of sexual misconduct were revealed. The accuser, Dr. Christine Ford, wrote to her local representative and senator in July regarding an incident that occurred when she and Kavanaugh were in high school.

Since the allegations have been made public, much of the news media on both sides have failed to examine all of the facts in the case in favor of repeating talking points from politicians on each side.

For conservatives, many commentators have stuck to the talking point that until there is more information, nothing can be done. While usually delivering a message that does err on the side of caution, news media commentators on the right have failed to acknowledge that since it is unlikely facts can be discovered within the next week.

Waiting for more information would lead to a vote on Kavanaugh before the credibility of the allegations can be confirmed. In a tweet after the allegations surfaced, Ben Shapiro, founder of the Daily Wire tweeted, “The point here isn’t that we should DISBELIEVE all women. We should give women the presumption of truth — but then we should ask for supporting details and evidence if we actually give a good damn about due process or truth itself.”

This carefully crafted message ignores the issue that additional information will be difficult to ascertain, and that this line of thinking will lead to Kavanaugh’s confirmation prior to the discovery of any corroborating evidence for the allegations.

For the left, many news media commentators have repeated the Democratic talking points that ranking member of the Senate Judiciary Committee Chuck Grassley should halt the nomination process and institute an FBI investigation. The only issue with this idea is that the Senate does not actually have the authority to order an investigation from the FBI, as it exists as an executive branch agency.

One member of the news media who has been an example of simply reporting the facts has been Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Ronan Farrow, famous for his investigative work exposing allegations against Harvey Weinstein. Farrow’s reporting on the subject featured a detailed account of the allegations against Kavanaugh, along with reporting that the allegations have been known to senator Dianne Feinstein since July.

With information difficult to come across for extremely serious allegations regarding a Supreme Court nominee, Farrow has simply informed the public without inserting his own opinion and allowing the facts to inform the public as to where the situation stands.

Media perpetuate political name-calling


The political arena of news media is a ceaseless back and forth between both journalists and politicians on opposing sides of issues. During an interview on “Real Time with Bill Maher,” former Secretary of State John Kerry found himself the brunt of heavy criticism.

During the interview, Maher prompted discussion regarding Trump’s apparent resentment towards Kerry, and the reasoning behind it.

Kerry responded with criticisms regarding Trump’s use of social media and the ways in which he seemingly prioritizes it. Then, Kerry elaborated as the audience cheered him on.

“He really is the rare combination of an 8-year-old boy — I mean, he’s got the maturity of an 8-year-old boy with the insecurity of a teenage girl. It’s just who he is,” said Kerry.

In an East Bay Times article covering the event the author, Amy B. Wang, discussed the online responses Kerry received when he compared Trump to a teenage girl.

Wang briefly discussed those who supported the humorously intended comparison, but she mainly focuses on the backlash. She points out that many found the comment offensive due to the fact that many teenage girls aren’t insecure.

While Kerry’s comments were based in a stereotype that could be offensive to some, the “newsworthiness” of this situation seems unlikely. Media sources are plastered with incessant name-calling and through covering it, we perpetuate the cycle, and give power to those engaging in the act.

Not only is the newsworthiness of these reoccurring instances questionable, but the line between what makes one situation worth covering and another not is puzzling.

More or less any statement made by politicians, especially, will receive some sort of backlash or another online. So, where do we draw the line between offensive to the point of being newsworthy and then simply not worth our time as journalists?

Scarborough calls Trump harmful


Sept. 11 is regarded as a national day of mourning, where Americans come together in solidarity to honor the nearly 3,000 lives lost in the tragic terrorist attacks. It is a day to put political differences aside and remember the fallen.

Joe Scarborough, host of MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” did not seem to get that memo.

Scarborough, a former Trump supporter turned critic, took to Twitter on the 17th anniversary of 9/11 to promote his newest opinion piece in The Washington Post, entitled, “Trump is harming the dream of America more than any foreign adversary ever could.”

In the column, Scarborough recalls that America was once a powerhouse prior to Sept. 11, 2001. He then proceeds to criticize the presidency of George W. Bush before ultimately scrutinizing President Donald Trump and his supporters.

He concluded the piece by saying, “The question for voters this fall is whether their country will move beyond this troubled chapter in history or whether they will continue supporting a politician who has done more damage to the dream of America than any foreign adversary ever could.”

Regardless of one’s feelings regarding President Trump, comparing his presidency to the deadliest attack on American soil is both inappropriate and insensitive. Scarborough continues to be the recipient of backlash from various political pundits for his remarks. In an interview with Fox News, conservative strategist, Chris Barron, said that “Shamelessly exploiting the death of 3,000 Americans in an attempt to do political damage to President Trump is a new low, even for Joe Scarborough.”

After receiving criticism from public figures such as Sean Hannity and Donald Trump Jr. Scarborough took to Twitter once-again to give what seemed like a weak apology for the article. “…On September 11th, I’ll read the column again and think about whether I could have said the same thing in a way less offensive to Trump supporters on September 11th.”

Personally, I am surprised that Scarborough’s piece did not generate more news media attention. While it was definitely acknowledged by the more conservative networks such as Fox, it did not seem to get mentioned as much or at all on the more liberal media outlets.

Talk about 2020 race builds


The Democratic governor of Montana, Steve Bullock, has recently been on several trips to Iowa. This has fueled speculation that the red-state governor may run for president.

Ever since the 2016 election, there has been talk about 2020 on a daily basis. Some argue that the Democratic party should become the socialist party of America, while others argue that the Democratic party should take a more centrist and pragmatic approach to matters.

Other than former Vice President Joe Biden, most of the names being talked about for 2020 are notably more liberal than former President Barack Obama and are from liberal states such as California, New York and New Jersey.

Unlike many of the other talked about potential 2020 candidates, Bullock is from a conservative state. He was re-elected governor in a state where Donald Trump won by 20 percent during the general election in 2016.

Bullock says Democrats will lose the 2018 midterms if they make it “just a referendum against Donald Trump. It’s not enough from my perspective just to be against him.”

In addition to being from a conservative state, Bullock’s policies and goals are considerably different from what would be expected from a Democrat. Bullock has opposed having a sales tax in Montana and has on a number of occasions made budget cuts.

Unlike many blue-state Democrats, Bullock also had to appeal to Republicans in order to be elected and believes there is more to governing successfully than taking whatever is the most progressive position.

“Somewhere between 20 and 30 percent of my voters also voted for Donald Trump. But how I win and how I govern, I don’t think there’s any secret recipe,” Bullock said in an interview on ABC News.

A number of news outlets have mentioned Bullock as a possible 2020 candidate but have cited his lack of name recognition as a potential challenge for him.

Most mainstream news sources treat certain politicians like heroes and others like they are pure evil and they seem to want certain candidates to run in 2020. For an example, CNN has mentioned former bartender and current Democratic nominee for New York’s 14th district, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez as “the new face of the democratic party,” even though she is yet to win a House seat.

Another example of a politician who is portrayed in a positive light is Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul. Time magazine wrote a cover story about Paul, calling him “the Most Interesting Man in Politics.” On the other hand, politicians such as Hillary Clinton are portrayed by sources such as CNN as a corrupt pathological liar despite having almost the same average of true and false statements as Obama according to Politifact.

Many news outlets are quoting advice on how to win non-liberal states from people with ultra-liberal viewpoints who are from liberal states such as Bernie Sanders, a socialist Senator from Vermont. Many news sources and Democrats that want to win elections are ignoring the opinions and ideas of Democrats who actually won elections in conservative states such as Bullock.

Shalala wins Democratic nomination


After a tough battle, Donna Shalala, former University of Miami President and Secretary of Health and Human Services, has won the nomination for the South Florida District 27 Congressional seat. Among her opponents were former Knight Foundation director Matt Haggman, former University of Miami academic adviser Michael Hepburn and Miami Beach Commissioner Kristen Rosen Gonzalez.

The showdown in November will come between Shalala and GOP nominee Maria Elvira Salazar, a former Univision reporter and anchor, is expected to be a close race.

Throughout her campaign, Shalala was adamant on several policy stances. Among the most controversial, Shalala campaigned for government-provided health care, removing the nation’s immigration enforcement force (ICE) and starting impeachment proceedings on Trump on day one if she is elected.

While her views may deter from the Democratic agenda, Shalala’s resume bodes an impressive history in Washington. Serving as chair of the Children’s Defense Fund from 1992 to 1993, President Bill Clinton nominated her as Secretary of Health and Human Services in 1992.

Many constituents cited this experience as making Shalala the most qualified among the Democrats for the nomination.

The final election will take place on Nov. 6.

Scott uses runway for political stand


Jeremy Scott used his runway to take a political stand.

Scott is known for his unapologetic style in fashion. He is very creative and is all about having fun while creating fashion.

Scott closed his show with a debut of his white t-shirt with black letters saying, “Tell your senators no on Kavanaugh.” The t-shirt statement was followed by the phone number to Washington, D.C., where you are able to call an express how you feel.

The Vogue.com article on Jeremy Scott covered who Kavanaugh is to the general public and why he is important while keeping it simple for an audience who probably isn’t politically inclined to understand.

According to Vogue.com, Scott has been very open lately on his political views with gay rights and is not holding back any time soon. Continuing showing his stance by showcasing this t-shirt during New York Fashion Week in protest to change the election of Kavanaugh.

He hopes that other designers follow his lead and speak up on what is right during NYFW where it can make a great impact.

Kardashian attracts press for clemency


After her first visit with President Trump in June to lobby the release of Alice Marie Johnson from her lifetime prison sentence, Kardashian West returned to the White House this Wednesday to attend a listening session on clemency reform.

An article on CNN.com, headlined “Kim Kardashian at White House for clemency review session,” briefly mentioned Kardashian West’s participation at the meeting, but quickly moved on, focusing rather on other reform activists and attendees. 

Authors Jeremy Diamond and Betsy Klein chose to interview human rights attorney Jessica Jackson Sloan, who attended the session to advocate the reduction in inmate populations of federal prisons. Sloan complimented Jared Kushner and other White House staff for their efforts, and even regarded Kushner as “one of the most persistent and passionate advocates for criminal justice reform.”

The article even went on to discuss the progress of the First Step Act — a bill pushing to entice prisoners with early release if they participate in rehabilitation, thus decreasing the number of federal prisoners — which is still in limbo after pausing in Senate this summer. 

The article mentioned that Kardashian West gave “concrete feedback” at the meeting and brought up her involvement with another drug-related imprisonment case, quoting one of her Tweets on the subject. But, that’s it. 

There was not one direct quote from the reality star, and her presence in the article seemed, in my opinion, out of place. The purpose of the article was to report on the progress of various sentencing reforms, as well as explain what was discussed at the clemency review. 

Despite the clear goal of the article, Kardashian West’s name seemed to plague the headline, lede and first three paragraphs of the story — not to mention the video interview with her at the very top of the article. It is obvious that the beauty icon’s insertion into a blatantly political article was a media ploy to appeal to a larger readership. 

The strong emphasis on Kardashian West was unnecessary in achieving the goal of the article and actually proved misleading as to the contents of the rest of the piece, which did not have much to do with her. The authors could have definitely mentioned her attendance at the meeting, but should have probably chosen a different headline, lede and visual medium to accompany the story. 

Nonetheless, what the article does well is detail Trump’s involvement on the issue, as well as the standpoints of various attendees of the meeting, including former federal judge Kevin Sharp and the President’s daughter, Ivanka Trump. It is also well-reported, quoting three attendees of the listening session. 

DeSantis comments draw criticism


Following the victories of Rep. Ron DeSantis and Andrew Gillum in Florida’s gubernatorial primaries, DeSantis’s word choice during an on-air interview with Fox, came under fire.

According to Rolling Stone, DeSantis stated, “The last thing we need to do is monkey this up by trying to embrace a socialist agenda with huge tax increases and bankrupting the state.”

The article by Bob Moser, emphasizes DeSantis’s use of the word “monkey” and quotes Gillum’s response comparing the comment to a bullhorn.

Moser later refers to President Donald Trump as, “the bullhorner-in-chief,” making his personal stance on the issue clear. Even later stating that the president, “couldn’t be more grossly mistaken…” in regard to Trump’s comment stating that Gillum is DeSantis’s ideal opponent and insinuating the ease with which he believes DeSantis will win.

Moser then continues to use phrases such as “dog-whistling” when referring to Republican candidate’s calling out their opponents on various issues.

Seemingly in support of the Republican opposition, Moser emphatically says, “Checkmate!” in support of the response by Stacey Abrams, candidate for Georgia governor, to GOP attacks on her financial status.

It’s difficult to blame the author for any bias regarding these issues when he later elaborates on further anti-black anecdotes about the Road to Power, an Idaho-based white supremacist group. During their time in Florida, Moore documents them as mocking Gillum through taunts such as, “I is Andrew Gillum. We Negroes…done made mud huts while white folks waste a bunch of time making their home out of wood an’ stone.”

The article ends on a somewhat positive note, affirming that racist jabs toward Gillum will only work in his favor during the election, giving the people something to vote against.

Although Moore may have expressed some personal opinions through various instances of pseudo-name-calling, he had evidence, anecdotes, and direct quotes in support of all claims made.

Additionally, in situations with vehement racism, it grows increasingly difficult to remain neutral which may have resulted in the over encompassing evil-versus-good feeling of the article.

Post examines reorganization plan


A news article reported and written byin the Health & Science section of The Washington Post discusses a new plan to reorganize parts of the executive branch of the federal government. Click for the June 21 article: Government reorganization plan embraces conservative goals for the safety net.

Besides the Trump administration’s proposal to reorganize specific subdivisions of the federal government, the administration is also explicitly requesting the implementation of specific requirements. These requirements encompass having people work in preparation for jobs to qualify. I agree with the idea of having possible standards implemented as a satisfactory passage, but believe their should also be additional options to choose from besides the requirements that have been listed, such as education.

The authors are good at being subtly bi-partisan by clearly differentiating the conduct of both parties without bias but rather rationally.

They specifically target the popular rhetorical opinions of the media that classifies the ideals of the parties to the public eye. For example, the following paragraph:

    The blueprint does not itself contain funding cuts for food stamps, cash assistance, Medicaid or other longtime pillars of the government’s safety net. But it runs alongside President Trump’s efforts in his budgets to slash funding for such programs. And it would buttress a case for reductions by pulling together programs in ways that make clearer how much the government is spending.

The reflective overlook of the article does not depicts the character of President Trump negatively rather they choose to articulate his ideology. They’re attentive to the rhetorical ideology the president has originally promised on his campaign but also observes the application of his ideology. The continuous tone of voice has been neutral in comparison to  the tone of mockery the news media often have for the president.

The article did fall short in educating the public as to the foundational elements of the context. The majority of the article had various questions rather than answers in which made me, as the reader, feel slightly informed but still not fully comprehending the material.