Tuesday, October 4, 2016


Neelam Khan

I enjoyed reading the RTDNA article by Waliya Lari because I related to it personally and intellectually. I am the daughter of Pakistani- Muslim immigrants who have been living here for almost forty years. We're Americans. So yes, it is very evident to me and to many of my Muslim peers, as well as South Asian and Middle Eastern peers, that there is bigotry within the media's portrayal of them. I can talk endlessly about this because this is just one facet of the media's stereotypical portrayal of colored people- letting people brew fear in their hearts. Lari points out that terrorists like Dylann Roof or Elliot Rodgers weren't called into question about their religious beliefs or their fuel for their dark crime. I agree with that because most of the white men I see convicted of mass murder are deemed "insane," not questioned deeply like brown men. She also points out the mass harm it does to the millions of Americans affected by this bigotry, how this clear racism can create hatred in peoples' hearts and hurt the innocent people having nothing to do with the stereotypes.

The Negative Portrayal of Black People in American Media

The Nieman Report article had several great points, my favorite of which that diversity within the journalism community is invaluable. I believe that 1000% because I feel that there's a lack of depth in storytelling within a lot of the media I see. If more people of color began reporting and covering news, I believe the audience would reflect the awareness that we need in our society. As a student at OU, I feel that there is definitely a lack of diversity, and quite frankly, it bothers me. It creates a very one-sided environment. It's almost as if people don't care. There are students of color, but there definitely needs to be more in journalism. We need it. 

"Tia C. M. Tyree, a Howard University professor and the assistant chair of the university's department of Strategic, Legal and Management Communications, said the stereotyping of African-Americans and Hispanics in the media, and a distrust of systems in the United States that used to be rife with racism contribute to the distrust."
"Many will believe there is embedded racism in many of America's systems: the media system, the legal system, the educational system," she said. "Many will believe that minorities aren't treated fairly in those systems, and because of that, any products that come out of it will be problematic."

The Shallow Coverage of the Trans-gendered Community

I still cringe when I watch media reports on Caitlyn Jenner. Or Laverne Cox. Reporters are becoming more aware of less insulting ways to interview and write about transgendered people, but I really do hate the "othering" of them or treating them as a spectacle. I feel like it shouldn't be that big of a deal in our media and in our society. We need to be treating transgendered people like the normal people that they are. 


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