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The Mass Media

The Mass Media

The Mass Media

Engage or enrage: Inaction speaks louder than outrage

Strolling out from an invigorating class, the sight of our university newspaper usually brings a sense of academic camaraderie. Yet today, as my eyes danced over the front page, I was struck by a glaring paradox. Faculty members had taken center stage, not for their scholarly insight, but for their display of double standards. It begs the question: If the dissonance between words and action bothers you so much, why is your response limited to mere words? 

The letter from the faculty, printed with solemn concern, seems to miss the mark on two fronts: It critiques the media for a perceived one-sidedness while simultaneously presenting a skewed narrative of the events on campus. If the faculty desires coverage of Israeli perspectives, why not spearhead the charge? Organize rallies, host discussions or dedicate class time to the issues at hand. Complaining about media coverage without contributing to the discourse is akin to shouting into the wind. 

The faculty’s depiction of the Oct. 7 events skews dangerously close to duplicity. By labeling Israel’s actions as merely a “direct response” while graphically detailing the Hamas assault—they recount that Hamas “crossed into Israel and slaughtered roughly 1,200 people”—as a massacre, they fail to paint the full picture of a conflict deeply rooted in history. Their vivid account of Hamas’s transgressions, deplorable as they are, raises the question: Why not apply the same clarity to Israel’s actions? This selective recounting obscures the complexity of the strife, betraying both truth and those earnestly trying to grasp the enormity of a conflict that has raged on for decades. 

At the heart of the matter lies a recognition that the conflict between Israel and Palestine is not a series of isolated incidents, but a historical tapestry woven through decades of complex, intertwined narratives. This is not merely an ongoing war; it is a chronicle of struggle, loss and resistance that predates any current skirmish or battle. The recent losses—nearly 15,000 Palestinians and more than 1,200 Israelis, as reported by CNN on Nov. 7—are but the latest threads in a tragic pattern. [1] It is essential that any examination of the conflict, any report or opinion expressed, not only accounts for the present but also delves into the past. Only with a clear-eyed view of history can we hope to foster an environment where a lasting peace agreement is not just a fleeting wish, but a tangible goal within our grasp. 

When the faculty bemoans the saturation of anti-Israeli sentiment on campus, they overlook their own power to counterbalance the conversation. Create the posters, facilitate the forums and march in the rallies. If the weight of this issue truly burdens you, then it is time to take up the mantle of change with your own hands. 

I commend the newspaper for its willingness to print a diverse array of student opinions, a testament to the value of dialogue and debate. This platform is not just a sounding board, but a battleground for ideas, where the pen’s might can challenge the status quo and where silence is often the loudest cry for action. As we wield our pens and raise our voices, let us not forget that passivity is the silent accomplice to the status quo.  



[1] https://www.cnn.com/2023/11/07/middleeast/palestinian-israeli-deaths-gaza-dg/index.html