07 November 2007

why is kalb's al quartermont wearing a flag pin?

poor kalb they are only six years late in weighing in on this controversy. you would think that as much as kalb gets knocked for being biased and one sided in its reporting someone in management there would know better.

the new york times correctly wrote shortly after the 11 september 2001 attacks that journalists wearing flag pins "undermine the anchors' positions as disinterested conveyors of news." we agree. how can kalb be trusted to report stories that might be critical of the government when their anchor is sitting there wearing the symbol of the government?

these two writers in the new york times sum it up:

Journalists Without Flags Send the Right Signal
Published: October 21, 2001

Let's give the News 12 news director, Patrick Dolan, a break [''Patriotism vs. Journalistic Ethics,'' Oct. 7].

The flag is a symbol. Following last month's attack on New York and Washington, many of us have embraced it as a symbol of our unity and defiance, of sympathy for the victims and of support for those working in the wake of the attack. Yet it is still first and foremost a symbol of the United States and our government. In barring reporters and anchors from wearing flag lapel pins on the air, Mr. Dolan's motive and gut instinct was correct: Journalists should be seen reporting on the policies of our government, not giving the impression of representing it.

Ironically, the flag also symbolizes Mr. Dolan's right to an unpopular opinion!

Waving the Flag And Journalistic Principles
Journalists too are not of one nation; journalists are of the world. Reports broadcast in the United States are seen throughout the world, and journalists have a responsibility to be objective. The wearing of the flag, even in a time of national crisis, says ''my country, right or wrong,'' a statement that would be akin to a journalist professing his personal political beliefs on the air and not the facts of the story he is reporting.

Upper Brookville
eric deggans, tv critic for the st. petersburg times also correctly pointed out in an article "weighing ethics, patriotism" published in january 2002 in the university of south florida's the oracle:
Deggans discussed a recent ethical issue for journalists of whether it is appropriate for them to wear an American flag pin, an issue that he opposes. He said the controversy expanded after Sept. 11 with more than 100 e-mails from the public objecting to news anchors not wearing the pin. Deggans said the news anchors afterward began wearing the pins.

"At some point a journalist must question what the government has done in the war," Deggans said. "If we call ourselves patriotic, it's hard to challenge what the government has done. And we are setting ourselves up for a fall."
come on kalb get with the program and at least give the appearance of impartiality.