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The Media Is The Unofficial Fourth Branch Of Government Essay

933 words - 4 pages

Consider the people around you. Most  of them are informed adults who keep  up with the

current events and state of their nation. How they do this, is, of course, by watching the 7­o­clock

news with their family, or maybe reading CNN on their mobile phone on their morning bus ride to

work. Even listening to the radio as they drove in their car for 5 minutes could have given them

some idea as to how their government is doing. And what matters the most is how it's presented.

The media has this immense power, this way of showing things how their network wants, and

influencing how citizens might look at the actions of their government. I do agree with the notion

that the media is the unofficial fourth branch of government, because in a democratic country such

as ours, the view that the public has is the most important aspect; the media has the power to

support, the power to destroy, and most importantly the power to inform. The legislative branch

may be voting on laws, but one scandal about a  senator, and it could be the difference between

legislation being passed or not. Scholars recognize this power and recognize that it can make a big

enough difference to affect the other branches.

              Firstly, the media has the power to support. Who the media supports is often having a bit

of an easier time than the unsupported party. The popular broadcasting station, Fox News, is

known for being extremely right­swinging, and viewers who watch this channel are presented with

information that reviles President Obama and supports Governor Christie after his recent

“Bridgegate” scandal. The media's decisions on who to support and who to criticize reach every

single one of their viewers, and their viewers might now be watching CNN and cross checking

facts. Viewers will accept what is put in front of them. In reference to Governor Chris Christie's

“Bridgegate” scandal, before the whole issue occurred, the governor was favored to be the

Republican's bet for the next presidential election. Depending on the channel a family is watching,

they could still support him, or they could be extremely turned off by his actions. This then leads

to less votes, if he even makes it to the voting booth, and this obviously effects government. If the

media supports him, he still has his chance at the presidency, but if not, the millions of viewers

tuning in will be the end of his political career.

              Secondly, the media has the power to destroy. Simply presenting certain facts in certain

orders can affect people to such a degree that a president is impeached, new legislation is called

for, citizens are outraged. The TrayVon Martin case is one situation of this: one network presented


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