Critical voices in the media are increasingly encouraging news outlets to not give a "free pass" to the fact that presidential candidate Donald Trump "is without question making himself into the racist's candidate for president."
Right-wing media have repeatedly exploited the November 13 ISIS-led terror attacks in Paris to stoke fears about Syrian refugees posing a terror threat in the U.S., falsely claiming that the United States lacks a rigorous refugee vetting system, that most Syrian refugees are adult males "of fighting age," and that, like the attacks in Paris, the Boston Marathon bombing and Ft. Hood shooting were perpetrated by refugees.
Fox News baselessly claimed that the Obama administration ordered military officials to manipulate intelligence about ISIS after it was reported that the Pentagon was expanding an investigation into allegations that intelligence was altered to make the terror group look weaker than it was. However, the accusations of manipulation have pointed only to senior United States Central Command officials, not the White House.
Media outlets condemned Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump for "catering to the worst sort of racism" by retweeting "racist and wildly inaccurate" statistics about murder and race in the United States from an organization that "does not exist."
During the Sunday news shows on November 22, Republican presidential candidates Donald Trump, Ben Carson, Chris Christie, and John Kasich were all challenged by hosts over the fact that under current federal law, people who are on the FBI's consolidated terror watch list are not legally prohibited from buying guns. The questions over what is known as the "terror gap" followed widespread media discussion of legislation in Congress -- opposed by the National Rifle Association -- that would prohibit people on terror watch lists from buying guns.
Republican presidential candidate Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) is touting the endorsement of Troy Newman, the president of Operation Rescue and a board member for The Center for Medical Progress (CMP). Newman is one of the country's most notorious anti-choice activists. He was a "driving force" behind CMP's series of misleading videos smearing Planned Parenthood and has a long history of incendiary remarks that include "praising the killing of abortion doctors and calling women who have abortions 'murderers.'"
In its draft leasing plan that will set the boundaries for oil development in federal waters from 2017 to 2022, the Obama Administration proposed allowing offshore drilling along the Atlantic Coast between Virginia and Georgia. Newspapers in the states that would be impacted by this plan have published articles and editorials highlighting local opposition and describing the economic and environmental risks associated with offshore drilling. As the administration approaches a final decision on offshore drilling, these concerns identified by state media outlets should inform national media coverage in the days and weeks ahead.
In the days after the November 13 Paris terror attacks, conservative media figures advocated for aggressive bombing of ISIS-controlled cities in Syria and dismissed concerns over civilian casualties, calling for an end to targeting restrictions that aim to prevent collateral damage.
Right-wing media figures are pushing the false claim that if the victims of the terror attacks in Paris carried guns, then they could have stopped the attackers and prevented the onslaught. Experts, however, have explained that civilians with guns have not historically stopped mass attacks and that increasing gun availability actually increases violence.
Fox & Friends hosts attempted to discredit Hillary Clinton's plan to combat the Islamic State terrorist group by dubiously claiming her response to the Nigerian terrorist group Boko Haram was not "strong enough" during her tenure at the Department of State. In reality, experts have defended Clinton's response to the Boko Haram terrorist group as the "right" decision after her State Department was the first to blacklist three of the group's leaders so as not to empower the organization and inspire attacks against U.S. interests.
Right-wing media have responded to the Paris terror attacks by calling for increased scrutiny and surveillance of Muslims in the United States. However, surveillance programs that profile Muslims based on their religion are ineffective and threaten constitutional freedoms held by all Americans.
A series of reports about industrialists Charles and David Koch revealed that the brothers have advocated for decriminalizing white-collar crime, conduct "competitive intelligence" gathering on liberal groups and activists, and donated millions of dollars in 2014 to conservative groups that back Republicans and to anti-choice and anti-gay organizations. How will the hosts of MSNBC's Morning Joe, who have called the billionaires "awesome" and a "godsend," cover these stories?
Conservative media figures are attacking Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton's plan to revitalize coal communities by deceptively claiming Obama administration environmental policies that Clinton supports are responsible for "destroying" and "crippling" coal country in the first place. But these media figures are downplaying -- or outright ignoring -- more significant factors that have led to the coal industry's decades of decline, such as competition from natural gas and renewables, depletion of easily recoverable coal reserves, and advances in mining technology.
Right-wing media figures are supporting calls from House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) to stop the Syrian refugee program over worries the refugees could be terrorists, saying Ryan is "exactly right" and his statement is "common sense." This comes as Christian resettlement groups are criticizing calls by GOP figures to block the refugees.
Conservative media deceptively took President Obama's comments following the November 13 terror attacks in Paris out of context to argue that he is being "apathetic" and "cavalier" about the threat of ISIS. However, in his full remarks, Obama referred to the acts as "heinous" and "a terrible and sickening setback" in the fight against ISIS.