The programming committee organized a very successful panel discussion addressing the role of media in politics for the April general body meeting. Esteemed panelists included Dick Batchelor, Beverlye Colson Neal, Rev. Kevin Seraaj and our very own Chet Glover.
The role of the media, the panelists agreed, is extraordinarily important. Transparency in the political process coupled with timely and accurate media coverage is a game changer for political issues having an impact in the black community.
Voter suppression, for example, was a major political platform Mrs. Neal discussed. “Through focus groups and town hall meetings” she explained, “we can educate the community to change the sentiment of an entire nation. We’re still climbing the mountain, but we’re at a resting point.”
In reference to news coverage of issues effecting black communities Rev. Seraaj noted, “black representation was minimal.” He recalled a time when news was fair and balanced to him, but the tides have changed and he feels media is manipulated. “We’re forced to question trustworthiness of news organizations,” he said.
The event ended with a positive take away. In order to change the sentiment of an entire nation, we all must engage in the issues of our time. We must come together and make sure our message is heard. –By Alicia Mitchell