The news video, Celebrities Draw Attention to Ferguson is presented by Joy Reid, a Harvard graduate, Journalist, and news anchor for MSNBC. The video shows an interview with actor Jesse Williams and rapper Talib Kareli on the first week of her new show, The Reid Report, with MSNBC. MSNBC is an independent programming station of NBC which is a well-known and long time news source. It is however, not without bias controversies that are well documented. The bias of this video/news report was only in the lack of “the other side of the story.” While there are first hand facts stated by Talib Kareli on his experience being in Ferguson as an activist, the fallacy of “burden of proof” would come into play as he indicates the news media was banned from further filming at the direction of the police.
Both Jesse Williams and Talib Kareli claim several rhetorical devices used by authorities and the media. Talib is adamant on “false cause”, “quilt by association”, and “post hoc ergo propter hoc.” His claims are, 1) Mr. Brown was assumed guilty and targeted because of his skin color, 2) Mr. Brown’s character was attacked and became the focus of the news to redirect the attention from the actual shooting of Mr. Brown, and 3) the police are trying to justify their action by indicating a previous incident “shoving a store clerk” is directly related to the causation of the shooting.
Jesse Williams made an interesting comment “history has always been told by the victors” indicating the “appeal to emotions” or the consequences of our beliefs. Do we really think the police could shoot an innocent person? Is there bias and targeting between white authority and black society? Are authorities dictating and controlling the media outlets by launching a pursuit of showing the violence in Ferguson opposed to concentrating on and following the investigation of a fatal shooting?
Media control is a thing of the past as social media has taken over society. Television, newspaper, and radio can still choose to report according to their liking, but the “new” social media brings a plethora of information to a story. If the responsibility is left to the reader/viewer to form their own opinion based on the information and facts they receive, are we creating pandemonium from our opinions or from our sources?