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Local Media Are Not Biased, Just Bored

Date Posted: 2001-02-09

It seems like every American thinks the local media is biased and anti-American because they broadcast or publish articles about some crime that takes place on the island involving an American. Well, itís their job to publish information to the public. If these crimes were not committed, there would be no story.

I think most Americans are just restating the oleí statement about the local biased media they heard from someone else. Most of you do not know if the local media is biased or not. How many of you actually watch the Japanese news, or can read Japanese newspapers? Understanding the scenario that the Okinawa media faces each day is simple. This is a small boring island with relatively few news events that interest the public. You may look back only recently to see a perfect example. The G8 Summit that took place a year ago was covered by the local media every day since it was announced a year or two in advance to a greater extent than the U.S. media coverage of the O.J. Simpson trial. If you were lucky enough to see those few brief periods of no serious crime on the island, then the news would have bored you to death with coverage of some ribbon cutting ceremony in some place no one cared about with a backdrop of empty chairs and the sound of the few organizers clapping as loud as they could to hide the failure of that uninteresting event that no one came to.

In short, thereís nothing here, thereís nothing to talk about. Keep your hands clean, and donít worry about making excuses for that one scumbag that breaks the law. That silent majority that fills the barracks needs to get out, make friends, and show the island that Americans are good people. Donít let the pounding presses coverage of some idiotís crime overshadow the goodness that is here, but too well hidden.

People want to read about bad news, not good news. The friendly old lady that gave her life savings to the local church may get a small thirty second spot at the end of the local broadcast on Christmas Eve, but thatís about the extent of good news coverage in America, Japan, or anywhere else.

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