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Right wing media on the rise? Hardly

David Zurawik writes that our fragile republic is in danger with the rise of conservative media (“Conservative media rising in Trump's America,” Dec. 24). Fox News, the Steve Bannon-led Breitbart News Network, the Daily Caller, and the Sinclair Broadcast Group are maintained by Mr. Zurawik to be part of a propaganda machine that blindly supports President Donald Trump and unfairly criticizes Trump opponents. My advice to Mr. Zurawik is to calm down.

The media cited by Mr. Zurawik are merely one part of a vast media industry, the majority of which is hostile to Mr. Trump and Republicans in general. Fox is a big cheerleader for Mr. Trump, but are they any worse than the rock star worship given to President Barack Obama by CNN, NBC, ABC, CBS and MSNBC? Sean Hannity is a buffoon, but is he any worse than partisan lightweights like MSNBC 's Rachel Maddow?

Viewers should be trusted to make their own decisions as to what is real news and what is nonsense. If a news source is unfair or unreliable, the remedy is at a viewer's fingertips : change the channel. The marketplace will solve the problem. The real danger is the media using its power to push false and harmful positions. Mr. Zurawik cites right wing media 's attempts to support Roy Moore in the recent Alabama Senate race. This is a bad example since even Alabama voters will not support a nutcase who is also a pedophile. Instead, he might want to look at the New York Times editorial board actively encouraging readers to lobby against the recently enacted tax cut legislation while distorting the contents of the bill. It is one thing to express opinions on the merits of a bill but quite another to actively lobby for or against particular legislation.

With power comes responsibility. The media has the power and responsibility to accurately report facts, and viewers/readers have the responsibility to intelligently choose a valid source of information. Our Republic depends on it.

Robert C Erlandson. Lutherville

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