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Letter: Failure of mass media impacts our democracy

Failure of mass media impacts our democracy

The ghastly failure of the Fourth Estate is helping to destroy real democracy in the United States. By Fourth Estate, I mean the mass media. Our Founding Fathers crafted and adopted a form of representative democracy, specifically a republic. Viability of the republic was to be, in part, reliant upon an effective free press to produce an informed electorate.

Today we do not have a free press. We do not have an adequately informed electorate. Mass media outlets are owned by big corporations whose primary goals are to increase profits and to enhance shareholder value. What sells sponsorships best? Tales of sexual adventures and uncivil conduct fill corporate coffers. An uninformed public gobbles it up.

Television and radio are the worst, but print outlets are guilty, too. Sound bites omit relevant information. “Stories” are designed to entertain us instead of objective, fact-based, context-driven reporting to inform us. Mass media presents “circus” without the bread. Heaven help us.

I remain a Bernie Sanders supporter.

Lynda Stephens

Buffalo

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