Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Maybe Not Always So Peaceful

At War Room, we get a comparison of this peaceful transfer of power and the last one:
In 2001, protesters at the site took over risers intended for ticket-holders there to support the new president; the ticket-holders themselves mostly went elsewhere. And when Bush drove down Pennsylvania Ave. after he was sworn in, the motorcade had to spend much of the route at full speed to avoid a hail of boos. Today, I saw no protesters at the site, and the risers looked well-used. And everyone along the parade route was happy, celebrating. I heard one woman say to her child, "We did overcome."

I have friends who were at the 2001 inauguration for the protests, and so I heard first-hand about what happened, long before the rest of the world got clued in via Michael Moore’s “Fahrenheit 9/11” three and a half years later.

What really struck me about 2001 wasn’t the fact that there were protests--after the contentious, challenged election, that was expected. But the fact that our media didn’t cover them at all shocked me.

I still to this day do not understand why the media failed to do its job on that January day. Maybe they were afraid that coverage would spark nationwide protests (and I'm not sure why that is supposed to be a bad thing). Maybe they thought it was more “patriotic” to try to “bring the country together.” I don’t know. I do know that it is not the job of the media to be patriotic, spark protests, be unifiers, make the president legitimate or illegitimate or any of those things.

Their job is to cover the news. News was made in 2001. They ignored it.