Media Influences Terrorism Essay

988 words - 4 pages

Terrorism has been a controversial topic ever since the 19th century, during Napoleon’s invasion of Spain in 1807 (White, Jonathan, et al. 123). The term’s meaning has changed over time throughout history, and has sparked debates over its true definition (White Jonathan, et al. 7). It was not until after the 9/11 attacks, when the media started to bring terrorism in its headlines. By then, terrorism became a popular topic for its drama. Drama attracts audiences to read, watch, or listen to their advertisements (White, Jonathan, et al. 74). I believe the media does influence terrorism because it attracts attention, generalizes certain groups of people, and the use of communicating through the ...view middle of the document...

We believe what we see and hear, but we never question it. The proof of that is the kind of TV shows, movies, music, and even video games that are sold to the public. These sources allow anyone to become a criminal, or worse, a terrorist, by showing everyone that killing is okay when in reality it is not. The media is a weapon, a weapon with enough power to control the world (White, Jonathan, et al. 77). It has been stated that the media was very important for al-Qaida, especially for Bin Laden. Bin Laden was practically obsessed with the media and the attention people gave the media (Gerges 2005, 194-197). This in turn led to the September 11 attack in 2001. Too much attention can lead to terrible consequences that can affect anyone, not just one person.
In addition, the media can also lead to generalization or stereotypes. Terrorists in the media are portrayed as men who have long beards, practice Islam, and are from the Middle East. While this does apply to certain terrorists, it does not apply to all. Not every person who practices the Islam religion is a terrorist (White, Jonathan, et al. 75). We cannot pull out a group of people and assume what they are without getting to know them first. Terrorists can be Christian, Atheist, Caucasian, African American, Asian, or Hispanic. It is dehumanizing and can lead to violence if provoked too far. The media have yet to learn this and continue to use those generalizations for “entertainment”.
Lastly, who can forget about the source of all evil, the internet. While it may not be truly evil or truly innocent, the internet does play a part in influencing terrorism (White, Jonathan, et al. 83). The Internet can be used to communicate with a family member, friends, or in the terrorists’ situation, their brethren. This in turn allows the terrorists to share information...

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