- The Washington Times - Wednesday, June 29, 2005

Karl Rove’s recent remarks on the demise of liberalism in the UnitedStates elicited the expected knee-jerk reactions from the usual suspects in the Democratic party, and many of their watch dogs from the mainstream media. While the rehearsed, hate-filled rhetoric pouring out of the mouths of congressional Democrats is to be expected, the assist from some in the mainstream media is to be pitied.

The liberal media’s reaction to Rove’s remarks illustrates, potentially, their greatest weakness. That being that their professed staunch belief in diversity is an unethical fraud. Why? Let’s examine the typical “diverse” newsroom at one of the major daily newspapers in the United States such as the New York Times, or The Washington Post, or one of the major networks like NBC, ABC or CBS News.

What is the totally predictable breakdown of their “diverse” collection of reporters, editors, producers and executives? Among their number, you will find liberal African Americans, Hispanics, Asians, Arab Americans, caucasians, Catholics, Jews, protestants, Muslims, Scientologists, Buddhists and every other conceivable ethnic and religious background known to the planet. What you won’t find, however, on this very eclectic list, is the demographic that proves the premeditated prejudice of the mainstream newsroom. You won’t find conservatives.

The mainstream media’s “deep, moral, and principled” belief in diversity does not extend to conservatives. It’s not even that the liberal media forces conservatives to use separate bathrooms or drink from their own water fountains. It’s worse than that. They don’t allow them on the premises, period.

Strange, but I don’t hear these newsrooms reporting on this form of discrimination. Rather, they celebrate this unconscionable transgression in the misguided belief that they, and only they, can interpret the news and the “truth” that shall be disseminated to the American people.

Ironically, it is the liberal newsroom that is most being hurt by this sanctioned bigotry. The very newspapers and networks that allow no conservatives into their restricted clubs are the ones who are now bleeding readers and viewers.

The American people want, need, and in greater numbers are demanding some semblance of balance in their news coverage. With its bigotry against the conservative viewpoint, the mainstream media has basically told at least one half of the nation that, “Your interests are not our interests. Your beliefs are not our beliefs. Your morals are not our morals.” These Americans have absorbed that rhetorical slap in the face, and by the hundreds of thousands per year, have turned their backs on much of the mainstream press in search of news outlets that will present more balance in their reporting. Be that cable channels, the Internet or blogs, they are abandoning the liberal press in record numbers.

Make no mistake. I am not advocating a conservative viewpoint in hard-news copy. I would argue against that just as strongly as I do against liberal viewpoint in news copy. Wrong is wrong. Those viewpoints should only be expressed in commentaries or on Op-Ed pages.

The point I am trying to make, however, is that if liberal newsrooms continue to exclude reporters, editors, producers or executives who might have a”conservative”background, then they are losing touch with many of the people they are trying to serve. They have no ability to cover what they don’t understand.

So, the liberal media can beat up Karl Rove all they want for doing nothing more than quoting other liberals. But each day, week, month and year they do, they will be ranting to a smaller and smaller audience.

Douglas MacKinnon served as press secretary to former Sen. Bob Dole. He is also a former White House and Pentagon official and a novelist.

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