Mainstream press failed; Two-thirds of U.S. wrong about who attacked us on 9/11
In the video above (2006), Cenk Uygur, host of The Young Turks (TYT), is infuriated about the mainstream media’s coverage in regards to who was responsible for the 9/11 attacks. Uygur vehemently insists that the mainstream press failed the public, since over half the U.S. believed in a lie 5 years after the 9/11 attacks.
According to Uygur, in reference to a CNN poll, “43% of Americans still believe that Saddam Hussein was personally involved in the attacks on 9/11.” The CNN poll reveals that a high percentage of the American public believes something to be true that is factually inaccurate, five years after the 9/11 attacks!
Uygur continues further stating that “43% of Americans are ‘dead wrong’ on a fact” and concluding that the statistic represents “a colossal failure on the part of the Press.”
Uygur also concludes that there is “no excuse” for the press’s failure in this case, but TYT co-host Michael Shure has a different perspective on who is to blame for this misinformed belief.
Michael Shure opines that “the people have to have a curiosity in this” and further commented, “this ‘fact’ as you call it has been put out there for American consumption now, for over 18 months!”
Shure concludes that the public should be more responsible, more inquiring, and intellectually curious, if the public wants to be better informed; in other words, Shure doesn’t believe the press failed in this case.
Jill Pike, now a former TYT co-host, concurred with Uygur’s assertion that the press failed the public, by questioning “why isn’t it a bold-faced headline on the cover of Newsweek, NY Times…?” and “why is it only buried in articles that intellectuals read?”
Pike understands that the social significance, on a macro-level, makes the story crucial to the public interest and discourse, in regards to the state of domestic and international affairs; this is why Pike finds it anomalous that the mainstream press has not driven this fact home: The fact that Saddam Hussein was not behind the attacks on 9/11!
Here is one area where Shure may have a stronger argument than Uygur: In the context of our journalistic times; in the midst of corporate power buying away editorial independence from our press and broadcast media, the quality and truthfulness in reporting has plummeted to suit the corporate agenda, therefore, it is imperative that the public observe the media with a much higher level of scrutiny and critical thinking.
With all of this being said, Cenk Uygur is still 100% right; the American press failed the public by not headlining the truth to the American people. USA Today is the highest circulating newspaper in the U.S. yet never put this information on a serious platform. To say that almost half of the U.S. population believes that Saddam Hussein was responsible for the 9/11 attacks, five years afterwards, is a tragedy within itself.
It is apparent that the American, mainstream press is suffering from corporatism as well as an avarice for press access that far overrides any commitment or obligation to presenting the truth to the public.
The Framers of the Constitution intended for the ‘Free Press’ to operate as a check on the power of the government, in order for the people to maintain control over their government. Journalists are to operate as ‘Bulwarks of Liberty’ otherwise they serve as an injustice to the work of Founding Fathers, such as Alexander Hamilton and many others. The mainstream press failed decisively in this regard.
In conclusion, the press failed us miserably on amplifying the truth as to who was responsible for the worst mainland attack in U.S. history. Cenk Uygur is undeniably correct in this regard. This is not only a failure in news reporting, it is a failure to democracy.
As this trend continues, citizen journalism will continue to grow, since disseminating truth is far too expensive for much of the mainstream media.
The press failed us then and will continue to fail us, until journalism is taken away from corporate barons like Rupert Murdoch, and into the hands of the People, as it was meant to be.