Suggestions for News Consumption

By Joan Janzen

The majority of our society obtains their daily news consumption from mainstream media every morning and/or evening. Although it’s been happening for decades, the daily consumption of news has become more of a challenge.

As president of Canada Family Action, Doug Sharp’s objective is to inform citizens of Canada. In that regard he made three suggestions for those who are daily consumers of mainstream news.

The first suggestion is to brace yourself to receive something that is intended to influence you. Just by acknowledging that you are being influenced to see things a certain way, will give you the advantage to view your daily intake in a more analytical way.

Consumers should pay attention to the language being used, and the inferences being made about a position or an opposing position. Brace yourself knowing that it’s designed to alter your perception.

This has become apparent as many have followed the trial of Kyle Rittenhouse. Rittenhouse was found not guilty on all counts by the jury, after he fatally shot two men and wounded another during three confrontations at Kenosha, Wisconsin on August 25, 2020.

Immediately after that date the media aired comments voiced by various individuals, including the US president, who said Kyle was a white supremicist mass shooter. Others labeled Kyle as a school shooter, a 17-year-old vigilante, a domestic terrorist who murdered a couple of people, and a deeply racist 17-year-old radicalized by Trumpism who became a killer with the intent to shoot people. He was reported to have crossed state lines with illegal firearms, which was not true, and the riot was called a “mostly peaceful protest” in spite of fires and shooting.

Rittenhouse’s attorney said he regularly watches CNN, who wrongly reported that Kyle had shot his gun 60 times. “They can’t take the time to get the basic facts correct because it didn’t fit into the story they wanted to tell,” he noted.

The second suggestion is to actively seek out balancing views which give another perspective. If you’re going to accept the information that’s been presented, try to obtain a balance by seeking out an additional perspective.

The third suggestion was to pursue issues and topics that are not presented. Many things are not being reported, or are or omitted, which is of even greater concern.

In the case of Rittenhouse, nothing was mentioned about his motive to be at the riot to give medical aid and assist people. Neither was anything mentioned about Rittenhouse being chased and threatened by men who had criminal records.

In Canada, we are repeatedly told that the inflation we’re experiencing is transitory. We’re given the impression that inflation is temporary, when in fact we’ll be experiencing it in the future at increasing levels.

After the jury declared Rittenhouse not guilty, the media delivered an alternative perspective. MSNBC stated, “The Kyle Rittenhouse trial was designed to protect white conservatives who kill”. On the Canadian front, the NDP leader said the verdict “feels like another failure by a broken system”.

The days of anchormen like Walter Cronkite are gone, who was often called “the most trusted man in America”.

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