This post has already been read 144 times!
IBNN and the African Americans (and Friends) Against Mainstream Media has launched a week-long event titled, “OCCUPY WCCO-TV and Demand more Black News.” This “occupy” movement is aimed at people of color demanding the CBS affiliate to report positive news about people of color in Minnesota rather than murders and crime. Sign up today on the Facebook® event page by clicking here.
by Justine Godlier-Bartholomew, IBNN NEWS Press Information
Minneapolis, MN (IBNN NEWS/Race and Media/April 6, 2012)…On Thursday at Minneapolis Community and Technical College in downtown Minneapolis, a panel discussion was held to address the current events surrounding the Trayvon Martin murder and to talk about race and racism. Unfortunately, the mainstream media in Minneapolis has packed up their bags and moved on to the next big-ticket item that won’t cause any controversy, questions or concerns.
The conversation at MCTC focused more on Minnesota’s disparities for people of color that Florida’s recent incident. Titi Bediako of WE WIN Institute – an educational outlet for Black youth in Minneapolis cited, “We need to quit worrying about what others are doing and just keep focus on what we’re doing in an effort to make things better for Black Minnesotans.” Also on the panel was street minister K.G. Wilson, who has been the target of death threats from a former north side political midget and her friends said, “I’ve been out here on these streets for more than seven years, I’ve been in the mainstream newspapers and television – but I’ve never been in the Black press except for IBNN NEWS. There’s something wrong when your own people marginalize and overlook your work.”
Ramón Zanders, vice president of the Student African American Brotherhood at MCTC said, “Why isn’t the mainstream media telling our stories? What do we have to do to get our news out?”
To show this issue has been around for sometime, the progressive newspaper, The Michigan Citizen wrote in a 2004 story titled, “Mainstream media ignore Black issues” says, “Most issues of greatest concern for African Americans continue to face a mainstream media blackout, panelists told investigative journalists at the 2004 Investigative Reporters and Editors conference in Atlanta, Georgia.”
The article also says, “There is a deliberate attempt by mainstream media to render civil rights issues irrelevant, citing as an example journalists’ use of terms like “post-civil rights era.”
Editor in chief of IBNN, Don Allen told the audience of about 100, “The mainstream media in the Twin Cities is more concerned about murder, death and kill as it pertains to Blacks, Native Americans and other people of color. When was the last time you saw a news report with a positive story about Native Americans or Blacks?”
Allen also cites, “In 2008 Minnesota Public Radio got funding to do what I call sympathy reporting in the Black community of north Minneapolis. I never heard one story that was relevant to the events in north Minneapolis or the progress made by Blacks. This was a sham by MPR – shame on Minnesota Public Radio and it’s news director Bill Wareham.”
Needless to say, media outlets like WCCO-TV and the Star Tribune have been used as public relations divisions for the City of Minneapolis. Much like in the reporting of the Ira Stafford incident where WCCO “sanitized” the video before playing it for their mainstream audience, there is never an opportunity for Black Minnesotans to tell there stories – positive or otherwise.
Black Minnesota should rally in front of this stations or call the news directors at the stations and demand quality Black news on the air. Until then, we’re just crabs in a barrel.