FATAH: The death of journalism as we knew it
Published: June 10, 2020
Updated: June 11, 2020 8:32 AM EDT
Wendy Mesley was sacrificed on Tuesday at the altar of political correctness.
Her 40-year career as a stellar journalist with the CBC turned into ashes as she was first backstabbed by her colleagues at work and then offered by CBC management as a human sacrifice to vultures on a diet of cancel culture.
The CBC story on its website reported: “Wendy Mesley suspended from hosting after using ‘careless’ language in discussing racial issue.”
It left the clear impression that Mesley had uttered some racist remark on air. At no place did the story elaborate what the “careless” language was or that it was used in a staff meeting and that they were not Mesley’s words.
“It was not aimed at anyone, I was quoting a journalist we were intending to interview on a panel discussion about coverage of racial inequality,” Mesley said in an apology statement posted online.
The un-authored CBC story made no effort to clarify the ‘when’ and ‘where’ of the story.
Was Wendy Mesley the sacrificial lamb for other errors in CBC reporting and judgment that were documented at the original Canadaland story breaking the news about her?
Mesley’s apology was not to the person who ratted on her, but to all of Canada. She tweeted: “I hurt people and for that, I am very sorry. I am also deeply ashamed.”
No, Wendy, you did not hurt anyone. You quoted someone and only that person, and she or he alone is responsible for those words.
I can walk in the shoes of many activists who proclaim “Black Lives Matter”, as I have done since the days of the Canadian Black Action Defence Committee. I marched in the Million Man March, having lived as a child in a climate of anti-Black racism that is ubiquitous in the Indian subcontinent and the Arab World.
But none of that history justifies the depiction of Wendy Mesley as a racist.
Some may consider it an exaggeration, but the slow strangulation of what is permitted language in newspapers and broadcast networks across North America is the death of journalism as we knew it.
Political correctness, identity politics, cancel culture and “white guilt” have combined to make the exercise of ‘objectivity’, hitherto the essential device in a reporter’s toolbox, almost a swear word.
There was a time when opinion writing was reserved for those who had a decade or more of reporting in their pockets. No more.
Today, the phenomenon of ‘activist journalism’ has been born. Free from the supervision of an editor, these ‘journalists’ leap straight to ‘opinion writing,’ never ever going through the rigours of covering the courts, crime or natural disasters unless there was an ethnic or racial twist in the story.
Truth be damned. The pressure is on to bury the facts, lest it upset the sensibilities of guilt-ridden left-wing whites. Notwithstanding the casualties they cause, political correctness is the rule of the day for them.
The CBC incident rings the memory of Winston Churchill’s speech on March 5, 1946, in Fulton, Missouri. Free from political correctness and No. 10 Downing Street, Churchill bellowed: “From Stettin in the Baltic, to Trieste in the Adriatic, an ‘iron curtain’ has descended across the continent, allowing police governments to rule Eastern Europe.”
Today, from coast to coast to coast, another iron curtain has descended on Canada, allowing ethnic vote banks to taint our politics and cut off journalism from the principle of balance and objectivity, a situation that leads to a defenceless and voiceless Wendy Mesley.
Take it from this man of colour, Wendy: You are not a racist, you are a journalist par excellence.