Many Mills students have been angry, frustrated, and consequently have removed themselves completely from any source of media due to the bias viewpoint of the Sept. 11 attacks and its aftermath.
“I feel a loss of knowledge by the fact that I have shut that the [media] out of my life, but it’s because I feel it’s false information,” said junior Emily MacDonald. The majority of students feel the same way, a great number of students no longer watch any media. To some extent, some students do not even read the newspaper and completely stopped watching or reading about the updates in the situation.
Since the attacks, students and faculty members have said that the shots of the crashing towers, the inflamed Pentagon, and the shots of people jumping out of the WTC was extremely exploited and unnecessary. Several students said that the media is fueling Americans to go to war. “I’ve honestly shut myself out from all mainstream media. I’ll be susceptible to the same hate and bias presented in the media,” said senior Susie Whitlock. Whitlock, a student who greatly opposes any act of war, acknowledged the lack of representation of anti-war protestors.
Video Professor Steve Matheson also said he found the media extremely biased. However, Matheson encouraged his students not to stop watching the media, “It is important to stay engage and just remember its limitations.” Matheson said he reads European sources, such as the English paper The Manchestor Guardian accessible through the internet. “The response is to look at it critically and view multiple sources.”
The attacks have started numbers of hate-crimes across the nation. Islamic, Muslims, and anyone who may look Middle Eastern have been targeted and shown hostility. One student at Mills, who didn’t want to be named who is Muslim, said that the media is making everyone hate anyone that looks Middle Eastern. Since the attacks, the student has been afraid to express her religion. She felt that the media has been misinterpreting the Islamic culture and many other Middle Eastern cultures. Anyone can be easily mistaken, and quickly after the mistaken identity, hate-crimes are then executed due to the lack of proper information. A young girl went up to the Mills student one day while the student was wearing a scarf on her head, and was asked if she was responsible for what happened.
Many if not all student have said that American media is not reporting both sides fairly. “The media in America is inflammatory than in any other country,” said sophomore Alix Holsten, whose parents are abroad during this time. “We are responding in an unhealthy way due to our media coverage. We need to be aware that the media could be used against ourselves.” Holsten said that the only news she feels true is the news broadcasted in other countries because they are told without propaganda.
While many students have decided not to watch TV because of the bias presentation, other students are simply tired of what is shown. “I’m just fed up with the media and what it shows as a whole,” said sophomore Sylvia Gates.