Skip to comments.Al Sharpton Criticizes White Media
Posted on 08/06/2003 6:09:58 PM PDT by schaketo
SIOUX CITY, Iowa - Veteran black activist Al Sharpton contended Wednesday that the news media are dismissive of his presidential campaign because newsrooms are overwhelmingly white.
"I think when you look at the lack of diversity in the newsrooms, when you look at the lack of diversity from the editors and those in power, then you see them as automatically dismissive of anything that is not like them, which is white males," said Sharpton.
"I think we've seen some very blatant racial insensitivity in the coverage of this race so far," said Sharpton, in an interview with The Associated Press.
Sharpton complained that former Vermont Gov. Howard Dean has been virtually anointed the hot candidate for the Democratic presidential nomination in 2004 a case, he said, of a white-dominated media focusing on a middle-age white man.
He noted that many commentators have compared Dean to former presidents Carter and Clinton, both governors of relatively small states, without mentioning that both Georgia and Arkansas have sizable minority populations, while Vermont is nearly all white.
"No one has even asked about the fact that this surge of support has been really one-dimensional," said Sharpton.
In addition, Sharpton said he is often asked about how he can hope to lure white voters in key early states like Iowa and New Hampshire, while Dean is never pressed on how he will appeal to minorities.
"When I come to Iowa, they ask how can Sharpton get the white vote," said Sharpton. "I've run in New York and gotten more white votes in my races than he's gotten black votes in Vermont? Why aren't we talking about that?"
Sharpton said former Illinois Sen. Carol Moseley Braun, another Democratic presidential who is black, also isn't getting serious news coverage.
"That kind of racial insensitivity has permeated this race," he said. "I think we've seen some very blatant racial insensitivity in the coverage of this race so far."
Sharpton was in Sioux City to join Sen. Tom Harkin (news, bio, voting record) in a series of forums Harkin is sponsoring giving the nine Democratic candidates a chance to make their case with activists pledged to attend next January's precinct caucuses. The caucuses will launch the presidential nominating season.
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I suppose his take is that Jayson Blair is a victim of the "racial insensitivity" that "permeates" the NYT.
Hey, is that young GerogeW on Al's shoulder?