MOVE Philadelphia Bombing - Research Paper Example

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A cursory review of modern news media requires the understanding that complex situations are oftentimes packaged and presented to the intended audience in a specific way with the intention of evoking a desired emotional response. Bias within the media has long been an issue that many researchers have sought to examine…
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MOVE Philadelphia Bombing
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Download file to see previous pages As such the news media plays a fundamental role in helping an individual understand each of these complex interpersonal and societal dynamics. Due to the history of race and class oppression in the United States, an overwhelming racial tension and undercurrent of class struggle exists at almost every level of American society. When groups that have suffered from the media’s bias, such as African Americans, have taken up cause and struggled against their portrayal in the media, they have been met with an even more aggressive media bias. Because of this, negative racial perceptions of African-Americans and black activism have been far more prevalent than those that exist within white activist individuals or communities. The MOVE bombing in Philadelphia shows the disparity in treatment and representation of black activists, both for their tactics and their presentation. In the aftermath of the MOVE bombing, those responsible downplayed the racial undertones of the decision to bomb the activist. However in a culture where racism is accepted in action but denounced in public, political projects such as the bombing of MOVE, “Overtly claim to hold colorblind views, (but they) covertly manipulate racial fears in order to achieve political gains”. (Omni & Winant 58). ...
t even though the civil rights era had begun a full 30 years previously, United States officials and the society at large, was still very much afraid of the perceived threat of black nationalism, black activism, black terrorism, and any other activism carried out by African-Americans (King & Smith 79). As such, the response to almost any form of black activism, crime, drug usage, or any other illegal, or conceivably illegal, activity was extreme to say the least. For years, pundits and political analysts have pointed to the unjust treatment of African-Americans under the criminal justice system of the United States. The violent reaction to the Philadelphia MOVE community was one that can only be understood as a response motivated primarily by racial fear, suspicion, and a great deal of prejudice and preconceived notions with respect to the way in which this particular group was expected to behave. Ultimately, the events that took place in 1985, with regards to the Philadelphia MOVE group, helps to illustrate the disparity between the way in which black separatism and white separatism was treated. For instance, an individual who might have espoused a radical ideology that promoted rabid antigovernment views and promoted a degree of racial discord and white supremacy would not likely have been engaged in the same manner that the individuals of the Philadelphia MOVE group were treated. Interestingly, a complete and thorough analysis of the incident up to and including the bombing of this group denotes the fact that even though a high percentage of the group’s members were in fact African-American, a unique level of black separatism, racism, and other racial motivations existed in the media portrayal of this incident. However, the lack of evidence for this media ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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