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Tuesday, January 11, 2011
MRC's Double Standard on Moral Equivalency
Topic: Media Research Center

In a Jan. 7 TimesWatch item, Clay Waters asserted that a New York Times reporter "betrayed a moral equivalence" in a story on on the bombing of a Christian church in Egypt by poetraying "the majority Muslims and the country’s often persecuted minority of Coptic Christians posed as equally to blame" for sectarian violence.

The MRC's crack bias-hunters, meanwhile, just can't seem to find the rampant bias on their own websites. Moral equivalency is exactly what Ron Futrell engaged in in a Jan. 6 NewsBusters post.

Writing about "joke videos" made by Capt. Owen Honors, commander of the USS Enterprise, that ultimately got him relieved of his command, Futrell complaind that "the media is not just reporting this story, they clearly show their disgust and outrage that anybody would make politically incorrect videos and live to play another day," then attacked "joke videos that people in newsrooms have produced."

Of course, these aren't the same at all, since the "Christmas videos" he cites also include "the outtakes of mistakes during newscasts" -- obviously a whole different animal than the videos Honors made. But Futrell is not going to let facts get in the way of his outrage. He then tries to pre-empt criticism of his view:

Of course, the media would argue that the job of somebody running an aircraft carrier is much more important than theirs (they wouldn’t really believe that, but they would say it,) so the Captain should be held to a higher standard, but there is no indication that security was in jeopardy here, if it were, then deal with that issue. Besides, we’re talking about the issue of what is decent and what is not decent.

I’m not so silly to think that the activist old media will ever hold itself to the same standard that they hold their subjects to. There are two sets of rules here, one for the media, another for the people they wish to destroy, in this case, it’s a member of the US military.

Of course, Futrell offers no evidence that "the media" is trying to "destroy" the entire military, let alone the career of one very irresponsible commander.

Futrell's single piece of evidence to back his claims about media videos is a single video he found on YouTube dating from 1983.

But that's what passes for "research" on "media bias" at the MRC.

Posted by Terry K. at 8:54 AM EST

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