I'm so sick and tired of how our media has handled this latest fiasco with their coverage of the Casey Anthony murder trial I'm beyond disgusted. Chris Hayes made some great points during this segment and it reminded me of what Jon Stewart said during his interview with Chris Wallace about what stories our corporate media decides to cover.
We posted a portion of that interview here, but here's the transcript from a bit of the interview that we did not feature at C&L:
STEWART: Because I think their bias is towards sensationalism and laziness. I wouldn't say it's towards a liberal agenda. It's light fluff. So, it's absolutely within the wheelhouse. I mean, if your suggestion is that they are relentlessly partisan and why haven't they gone and backed away from Weiner? Now, they jumped into the Weiner pool -- so, with such delight and such relish, because the bias --
WALLACE: Some things are indefensible.
STEWART: -- the bias of the mainstream media -- oh, I'm not saying it's defensible, but the bias of the mainstream media is toward sensationalism, conflict and laziness.
Chris Hayes took the conversation to a higher level and that is along with the fact that for whatever reason our media decides to glom onto one of these stories, the bigger travesty is what they're ignoring when they do it. Good for Chris Hayes, but imagine a world where our corporate media wasn't having this commentary compete with Joe Scarborough or most of their daytime coverage and hourly hackery on the same network.
It also would have been nice if he'd used the Flores family murder instead as an example of the type of story our media is ignoring while giving wall to wall coverage of the Anthony ambulance chasing and media circus.
I've read a bit on line saying that Hayes has been picked up by MSNBC with a contract for his own show. I'm wondering if that was a preemptive move by MSNBC to make sure Olbermann and Al Gore's Current TV didn't hire him instead.
Rough transcript below the fold.
HAYES: You know, it's extremely difficult to know what to do as both a journalist and a citizen when confronted with a set of ghastly allegations and the legal prosecution like the one the unfurled in Orlando. We simply do not know the most relevant facts of the matter, what exactly happened.
And yet there's this basic and understandable fascination among the public that remains hungrily demanding more details and so inevitably there are certain members of the media that will happily leap forward with enough outrage and speculation to keep the beast fed.
This isn't new of course. There were trials of the century long before there was cable news. But today's equivalent Casey Anthony and the strong reaction that it's provoked provide an opportunity to marvel at just how dysfunctional our relationship we have with our own criminal justice system.
While a single surprising acquittal makes headlines, the fact is day after day, without cameras or press releases, or much interest at all from our political leadership, our country processes a staggering number of people through the courts.
Most of them plead out because no one has the resources to actually go to trial. The result is nearly 2.3 million people behind bars and a per capita incarceration rate of 751 out of every hundred thousand Americans.
Higher than any country in the world. More than six times the official rate of China.
So whether or not justice was done in the case of Casey Anthony, and lord knows, I don't know, it's almost impossible to conclude when you zoom out that our system as a whole is reliably producing justice, day in and day out.
Consider as one example, another excused of murder. One who attracted one one millionth of the attention of Ms. Anthony. Corey Maye was convicted of murder and sentenced to death for shooting and killing a police officer in his Mississippi home in December of 2001.
Fallen asleep and heard men entering the home and fired off three shots from his hand gun before he realized they were police and not intruders. The police had broken into Maye's home on an erroneous drug tip from an informant.
Maye was black, the officer he shot and killed, Ron Jones Jr. was white. The case against Maye was so riddled with errors and his defense was so mismanaged, the state appeals court finally ordered a new trial last year.
And last week, he accepted a plea of manslaughter and a sentence of time served. But it had not been for committed attorneys and the dogged journalism of Radley Balko and others. Corey may would have been put to death by the state.
The truly horrifying thought on a day when the country's attention is so focused on murder and justice, is that while a case like Casey Anthony's can command our national attention, there are almost certainly other core remains out there who languish out of the spotlight.
Imagine a world in which Nancy Grace never devoted herself to securing justice for them.