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October 26, 2017

Former NPR CEO Ventures Out of the Liberal Media Bubble In Search of Actual Americans; Finds Out They're... Normal and Non-Threatening

H/t to Newsbusters for pointing this out and digesting it.

The liberal-turned-right-curious NPR exec writes about his journeys into America and his new book about it at the NY Post.

Most reporters and editors are liberal -- a now-dated Pew Research Center poll found that liberals outnumber conservatives in the media by some 5 to 1, and that comports with my own anecdotal experience at National Public Radio. When you are liberal, and everyone else around you is as well, it is easy to fall into groupthink on what stories are important, what sources are legitimate and what the narrative of the day will be.

This may seem like an unusual admission from someone who once ran NPR, but it is borne of recent experience. Spurred by a fear that red and blue America were drifting irrevocably apart, I decided to venture out from my overwhelmingly Democratic neighborhood and engage Republicans where they live, work and pray. For an entire year, I embedded myself with the other side, standing in pit row at a NASCAR race, hanging out at Tea Party meetings and sitting in on Steve Bannon's radio show. I found an America far different from the one depicted in the press and imagined by presidents ("cling to guns or religion") and presidential candidates ("basket of deplorables") alike.

I spent many Sundays in evangelical churches and hung out with 15,000 evangelical youth at the Urbana conference. I wasn't sure what to expect among thousands of college-age evangelicals, but I certainly didn't expect the intense discussion of racial equity and refugee issues -- how to help them, not how to keep them out -- but that is what I got.

He never even held a gun before, but he picked one up for a pig hunt:

In the afternoon, with the Georgians heading home, I linked up with a group of friends from Houston who belied the demographic stereotyping of the hunt; collectively we were the equivalent of a bad bar joke: a Hispanic ex-soldier, a young black family man, a Serbian immigrant and a Jew from DC.

None of my new hunting partners fit the lazy caricature of the angry NRA member. Rather, they saw guns as both a shared sport and as a necessary means to protect their families during uncertain times.

...

Over the course of this past year, I have tried to consume media as they do and understand it as a partisan player. It is not so hard to do. Take guns. Gun control and gun rights is one of our most divisive issues, and there are legitimate points on both sides. But media is obsessed with the gun-control side and gives only scant, mostly negative, recognition to the gun-rights sides.

He even talks about defensive gun use and the profound underreporting of them by the media.

In the end, he has to turn to talking about how terribly dangerous it is for our republic to have the president call out media, which the author himself says is hopelessly biased, for its hopeless bias.

The Guild protects his own. And an ego will protect itself at all costs.

That said, he then turns to the media:

At the same time, the media should acknowledge its own failings in reflecting only their part of America. You can't cover America from the Acela corridor, and the media need to get out and be part of the conversations that take place in churches and community centers and town halls.

Worth reading. I left a lot back at the link.

He appeared on Morning Joe to discuss his conversion. The Free Beacon has a video clip. He has not yet alleged a sexual assault by Mark Halperin.

H/t @leatherpenguin


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posted by Ace at 07:45 PM

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