Our Media Elite
Armstrong Williams | 11/17/2016, 10:07 a.m.
As the largest minority broadcast television owner, I have an interesting perspective on news and reporting. Knowing that millions of Americans rely on the local news and print journalists for information pertinent to their respective communities, the media has an obligation to be as balanced as possible in their reporting, but millions of Americans feel betrayed, and rightfully so.
No one should doubt that we may be on the cusp of a fundamental realignment within liberal ideology. The extent of a decade of secular decline of the Democratic party is staggering in its dimensions and implications.
Thirty-three states are led by Republican governors (and perhaps one more, depending on the recount results in North Carolina), the most since the early 1920s. Republicans now control 68 of 99 state legislatures and in 24 states, Republicans control the governor’s mansion and both houses of the state legislature. This movement toward the GOP at the state level has been fueled by the loss of more than 900 state legislative seats by Democrats since 2009. If President Obama has a legacy, it will be the destruction of his own party’s future.
State legislatures are the breeding ground for future mayors, governors and federal legislators. President Obama himself was a state senator four years before he was president.
More importantly, the discrediting of the liberal monolithic that is the mainstream media has implications that are unclear, but no less important. Puffed up by its role in supporting the anti-war movement during the Vietnam War and the removal of a president during the Watergate hearings, the media assumed both its influence and ideological certitude as an unquestioned bastion of left-wing propaganda.
Those suppositions have been destroyed in this cycle. Journalists talked and wrote openly of their “duty” not to report the facts, but to oppose—openly and actively—one candidate in highly ideological terms. This biased reporting should be the undoing of the mainstream media as we know it. The media is the only entity protected by our Constitution because it’s supposed to report the facts to the people and allow the people to discern from reported information to formulate their own opinion(s). However, what we see instead are journalists twisting the narrative to fit their own agendas.
Already hard-pressed financially by new media, this credibility-shattering experience must change outlets such as The New York Times and The Washington Post, lest they risk not only business ruin, but also irrelevance.
So much has changed, and much more can change. Trump’s “national populism” promises the revisiting of many of the assumptions of our national politics, and doing so is healthy. We have been well-equipped by our founders with institutions, mainly Congress and the Judiciary, to work through these issues systematically and thoroughly. It will be an interesting four years, but the media shouldn’t dictate the future. That must be left in the hands of every single voting American.
Mr. Williams is manager/sole owner of Howard Stirk Holdings I & II Broadcast Television Stations and the 2016 Multicultural Media Broadcast Owner of the Year. Listen to Mr. Williams on Sirius XM126 Urban View nightly, 6 p.m.-8 p.m., EST. Follow on Twitter: @arightside.