I've got a bad feeling about the way the media is working this election.

In my estimation there has been a shift in this election in recent days. McCain didn’t win the debate (you could take a stretch and call it even). The economy continues to show enormous signs of distress. Palin is being exposed as a skyrocket, blast and fizzle. The polls have started to show a noticeable shift towards Obama as could be expected under the circumstances.

But . . . . . the media needs their story. They need to stir interest. They need to keep it close. So what have they done, they’ve injected “race” back into the equation. Many of us thought the racial issue was dead after the primaries. We recognize that it will always hold some element of sway but it seems to have been addressed and minimized during the long nomination process. Yet, in the past few days there have been more stories in the mainstream media making race an issue than I’ve seen in months. I think it’s the media that is creating this story rather than any significant predispositions among the electorate or any surfacing of new information.

I Pit the media for creating a story that serves their own interests rather than just reporting the news.

There’s no difference between the media serving their own interests and reporting the news.

Also, the Democrats are the party that has a more vested interest in inserting race into the election–it’s been their issue for longer.

How do y’all believe that the media is inserting race into the news inappropriately?

Well, I think it’s an interesting question of how many people will vote for McCain because they are racists – closeted or not – and can’t bring themselves to vote for Obama no matter how much better they like his policies.

Though, at the same time I can’t imagine the media or anyone else is able to answer that question by any other means than speculation.

You can get some kind of estimate by comparing Obama’s polls in each primary state to the numbers he actually got from the primary. Of course that’s an imperfect measure, but it’s as good as we can do.

Sure there is. Controversy and close races sell papers, so nobody with an interest in selling papers is going to report that “everyone’s pretty much clear that Obama’s walking away with this thing.” Evidence here - three major media websites are holding Obama’s projected EV total at 264 (with lots of so-called swing states), while even the conservative-leaning RCP is showing him with 277, and most other estimates showing Obama over 300 within the margin of error.

You can sell 264 as “Obama still hasn’t hit 270” to someone who doesn’t realize that McCain would need to win every other state to win. Obama cracks 270 and all you’ve got is “McCain needs to run the board and force an upset and the Devil Rays have to win the Series in five games.”


Are the media calling black cameramen “Nigger”?

Are the media saying they don’t trust Obama because he’s an Arab?

Are the media inserting references to the Rev. Wright in Gov. Palin’s speeches?

Just wondering if you’d like to CITE some examples of the media injecting race into the campaign.

You’re missing my point. It’s not that the racist overtones aren’t out there and haven’t been out there all along. It’s what the media is choosing to cover. They pretty much ignored the issue of race until the last week. Now I’m seeing newspaper stories and feature stories at a rate that hasn’t been seen since Obama entered the race. I’m just saying that it looks like they are stoking the fires to maintain interest so they can get more readers and viewers. At this point, I’m not saying they are trying to dictate the winner, they just want to keep it close.

I think it’s a fair question to ask whether it is the media stoking the fire, or the McCain campaign stoking the fire and the media is simply reporting it.

Again, how do you believe that the media is inserting race into the news inappropriately?

Just based on the number of stories I am seeing lately. It SEEMS that in the last week it has become an issue that was put to bed a long time ago. No numbers, no cites, just perception.

The media, if you must choose to view it as a monolithic thing, have always put a greater emphasis on the horse race than on the horses.

The racial issues involved are part of that horse race, more so this year than in any previous election year, and it has everything to do with who’s running.

Yes, the media have an interest in readership, viewership, listenership and clickship (if you will), but that doesn’t mean coverage of an issue shouldn’t be based on what people are interested in.

Race should be discussed as an issue in this election. Americans, for the first time, are confronting their own prejudices, the reasons behind those prejudices and what race means in America. There’s nothing noble in pretending that you don’t notice that Obama is a black man.

You know what? Barack Obama had a black father. And having a black father contributed to how he experienced the world as he grew up. And it colors how people view him. And we need to talk about that.

So, if the media are “injecting” race into campaign, maybe it’s long past time that it did so.