An important news article appeared on the front page of The Australian this week.
“Media Mocks Christian Right” was the paraphrased headline.
The story detailed how those who identify with Christian tradition are deemed ‘fair game’ as media targets - all because of their faith.
Conservatives are labelled as ‘far right’, ‘extreme’, ‘religious right’ and yet similar labels are never attached to the left or those of other faiths.
Not once have I read in any serious journal a reference to the left as being ‘godless’ or ‘extreme’. More often than not they are portrayed as reflecting the majority of views even though their voter support is a substantial minority.
I am sure that the portrayal by the media is reflective of the political orientation of much of the press gallery but it does diminish the integrity of news journalism in this country.
But it’s not just political orientation where certain faiths cop a bad rap. Christianity in general is the only faith that is deemed to be ‘fair game’ for attack. All other belief systems seem to be a celebration of diversity - no matter how much their tenets are at odds with our history and customs.
In fact, calling out the reality of alternative views is grounds for relentless attack by media and political leaders, most of whom also feel free to disparage the Judeo-Christian framework that has founded civilisation.
We also see an overwhelming double standard in relation to the nation of Israel. It is typically painted as an aggressor nation that is relentlessly suppressing those around it. I don’t believe this to be the case and the evidence supports my thesis.
Israel is a bastion of democratic freedom in the repressive Middle East. Her citizens are targeted in orchestrated attacks by others who are directed on their way by radical governments and fiery sermons by Islamic fundamentalists.
And yet, many sections of the media continue to portray events skewed from a vastly different perspective.
The implications of this jaundiced presentation of world and domestic events are effectively a propaganda operation for anti-conservative agendas.
It shapes how individuals perceive events and how they reflect them in public debate. Few ever seek to learn more than what is presented to them on their television screens via a bunch of comedians pretending to present the news.
It’s clear the media landscape has changed with the advent of the digital economy. Information is more widely available than ever and yet because of the plethora of information, perversely the credibility of established mastheads is stronger than ever.
That’s particularly the case with the ABC - funded by taxpayers to the tune of nearly $1 billion every year.
Senator Abetz highlighted an important issue which found some traction in Australia’s leading daily newspaper.
It’s a step in the right direction and now that more people are aware of the problem, perhaps something more will be done about it.