CNN’S LOVE AFFAIR WITH BLACK "PATHOS"

Anybody who has read this blog knows how I feel about the corporate media.  I am completely disgusted by the way in which they depict black people in America and in the world.  I cringe whenever Soledad O’Brien does her “Black in America” “investigative reports” and I make it my business to NOT watch them.  Mainly because for all the investigating that’s being done, nothing new is ever found.  There’s still poverty, gangs, drugs, single parent families, etceterah, etceterah, etceterah. Same ole same ole.
It bothers me, though, when my black people see these “hard hitting reports” on blackness and they come away with a nagging feeling of inherent inferiority.  That ish bothers me.  These reports always manage to show black people as somehow lacking–one way or the other–with absolutely no prospects of being able to change anything.  If its not a lack of money, its a lack of education, or a lack of good sense, or a lack of good parents, a lack of two parents, or a lack of self respect, or a lack, period.  Whenever my people search  the corporate media news channels–either in their regular programming, or commercials, or the news reports–looking for  positive images of ourselves, 99.99 percent of the time we are sorely disappointed.  When we hear about a crime having been committed, we pray that the perpetrator wasn’t black.  I believe that all of this negativity that’s being reported about us 24-7 has a very bad effect on our spirits. Maybe in spite of ourselves, we start to believe that this is all there is to us as a people.  It leaves us feeling vulnerable and exposed, frustrated and angry.  I’ve often wondered just why the media is so overly focused on black people in general, and our so called “pathos” in particular?

 


Recently I was sent the following link of a brother, Jeremiah Camara, who has done a little “investigative reporting” of his own and gives us a different take than what you might find on the corporate media news networks. He asks the same question and poses not so much an answer as an antithetical question.  I thought it was quite illuminating… 

What do YOU think?

9 Comments Add yours

  1. [quote]These reports always manage to show black people as somehow lacking–one way or the other–with absolutely no prospects of being able to change anything. If its not a lack of money, its a lack of education, or a lack of good sense, or a lack of good parents, a lack of two parents, or a lack of self respect, or a lack, period. [/quote]With all due respect – how is it that you attribute this to a property of the "corporate media"?The prevailing Black Political Establishment in America traffics in these same messages.Their goal is that one day that "last law" that is passed at the federal level will one day rain resources upon the Black community, washing us clean of the legacy of economic suppression that this nation has thrown upon us like mud.I assure you that Soledad O'Brien is well connected in the "Black Progressive Political Circles". She views herself as carrying forth their message onto the broadcast screen.How can you have a problem with her content but not the content of the Congressional Black Caucus and array of left leaning elected officials who CLAIM to carry our community's flag as they use the same subject matter?

  2. Anna Renee says:

    Welcome Constructive Feedback! I don't really know you as I just responded to you at RiPPa's blog, and rest assured you don't know me either! You don't know what my position on the Congressional Black Caucus' content actually is, do you? What I have empirical evidence of is that the corporate media is on steroidal overdrive when it comes to black pathos, and I have read untold numbers of black bloggers who are distressed about these reports, to say the least!! Because I speak of the Corporate Media's duplicity in reporting these "Black in America""exposes" it doesn't tell you what my position is on the Congressional Black Caucus, or any other group, black or white! You seem to be an example of what Im talking about–being in a frenzy concerning black folks not being able to speak to their problems. And this is what these kinds of media reports tend to do to black folks! We get too damned caught up and then our reasoning ability is swept away–and that's exactly what the plan and design is! We have to be calm and self assured before we can be effective in the community. We can't allow this shit to rattle our cages like this!!

  3. AR:Please allow me to step back and reengage you on the subject. What I have seen about you in other posts you appear to be reasonable so I will "lose my rough edge".Here are my priorities:* Safe Streets* Quality Education* Thriving Local Economies* Healthy Lifestyle OutcomesANYONE who agrees with me on these foundational points is my ally even if we disagree on the tactics by which to achieve these ends.My frustration with certain Black folks is when they place their agenda in "American Political Domain" ahead of what is necessary in (what I call the) the "Community Cultural Consciousness and Competence Domain" they tend to focus on "chasing" after all sorts of external enemies who they claim are hurting our people. For me I make a priority stacked list of the forces that are threatening our people and I don't fear placing internal forces as equal to those of the external devils who are working toward our derailment.My seemingly cantankerous disposition is a necessary to ward off those who have the mistaken believe that MY BLACK CONSCIOUSNESS is a derivative of their approval. When I take away my pursuit of THEIR favor and deal with people in a more "straight up" fashion – by asking that we both yield to the PERMANENT INTERESTS above then we can all dispense of the games and deal with the important things.It is my belief that our community lacks the infrastructure by which these priorities can be maintained as the central focus. In this void we have various Confidence Men who operate for their own agenda. They will always get us to focus upon the enemies that most accentuate their own strength: Protest and Making Demands on External Forces.When I saw you focused upon the "corporations and the media" I had you labeled as one of those. My point is that the same people who talk about corporate media are some of the same people who accept Jay-Z, Young Jeezy, TI and Lil Wayne in as worthy visitors to our schools to talk to the young people. Their lyrics are too often part of this "corporate media".I indeed have a video series "What Is Making Black People Cry On The Evening News". It is an important counter-punch against those who seek to do "outside racism chasing". Too often it is Black women who are being assaulted by "Street Pirates" and yet some operatives make the case that OTHER PEOPLE don't care about Black people when they would rather not have these painful facts brought forth so that they can be MANAGED within our communities.Thus we have a "Human Resource Management" problem within our ranks. I simply refuse to be content with "Getting In Where I Fit In". I instead am going to challenge force that is in power where our permanent interests are being compromised.I assure you my motives are pure and productive.

  4. Anna Renee says:

    Constructive Feedback! I appreciate this reengagement. I now think I understand your position better and we're not antithical to each other. I want those things you list for our community too! I understand that our problem as black folks is very large, but not impossible. And because its so large we need everyone to attack it in the place where they are called to attack it. If we truly agree with your list as the outcome we want for our communities then we are all allies. I dont think that those who are screaming about the con men in the political arena are off base because those folks need to be exposed–they are the most visible. But then there are those who work directly in the community with kids, with elders, with leaders, with educators–we need them all. As for me, mine is teaching us to trust and in our own ability to answer our problems and not allow ourselves to be distracted by the negative reports of the media, and the media is part of the attack against us! Im a Christian and am a part of a Social Justice church. This church has that community focus and is the infrastructure that works in our community to get things done. When the church takes on this mantle, then we can make changes for the better in our community. The church in the days of MLK was just that sort of infrastructure and with the community organizing that took place, black people were able to bring the bus system to its knees by simply not riding for 13 months! We have an infrastructure if we fully develop it! So, Constructive Feedback, we find that we're not so antithetical!! Wonderful! Thanks for reengaging me!!

  5. Anonymous says:

    Jonah Goldberg's "Liberal Fascism" details the relationship of the political left (read, CNN) with the black community. The KKK, Jim Crowe laws, etc, were all products of the left.

  6. Reggie says:

    You're right, it's the same old shit and that's why I don't watch it either. One would think that they'd have enough sense to realize that we're just as diverse as any other group in this country.

  7. Anna Renee says:

    As I told a sister at another blog who says the same, they dont care if we diverse, they are stuck where they are as far as we black folks are concerned.

  8. James McCoy says:

    CNN,MSNBC,FOX NEWS all the same to me,when ever I view these channels for anything I watch and listen with a third eye and ear!

    1. Anna Renee says:

      You got to, or else you’ll lose your mind!! At the least you’ll lose your spirit and self respect and self love!

      I’ve been through this black blogosphere and have found numerous casualties to the negative media.

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