What happens when High School students visit CNN? They get berated for asking good questions.
Recently a High School group visited the offices of “the most trusted name in news,” only to be treated like they were idiots or questioning CNN’s decisions. At a Q&A for 700 Jewish teenagers the CNN Executive VP for of News Standards and Practices Richard Davis told High School Senior Hayley Nagelberg that most of the blame for misunderstanding in reporting is on the side of the uneducated viewer. When the students pressed on about this issue, Davis bristled and grew unhappy with the line of questioning.
All of which then led to this encounter that Nagelberg recounted on her blog.
The student recounted how, following the session, she went up to the executive and personally grilled him further on that mistaken chyron. That’s when he allegedly asked her if she’s brain-dead:
I questioned him on the Har Nof headlines again. I first had to prove to him that I had in fact even seen the headlines I was questioning. When I managed to satisfy his questions, I wanted to know why CNN, when releasing the headlines at issue, couldn’t call it a terrorist attack. Davis explained that they would never jump to a conclusion that anything is a terrorist attack. “Okay”, I said, fully understanding the weight that the word “terrorist” carries. “But by the time it was known that it was four Israelis and two Palestinians, it was known that there were meat cleavers and stabbings involved. Why couldn’t you call it an ‘attack’?” I continued. His response? “You’ve got to be kidding me? One word? Are you brain dead?”
Her blog post concluded with a retort:
Richard Davis – to answer your question, “Yes, I am serious. Yes, it’s one word. It makes a difference. No, I am not brain dead. I am a seventeen-year old girl from New Jersey who is appalled by the biased media coverage of Israel here in America. I am disgusted by the false headlines. I am pained by the ignorance of so many people, yourself included. And, most importantly, I am saddened and ashamed that there doesn’t seem to be an end in sight.