The folks at Pajamas asked me to write an essay for them on an ABC News segment on the reaction of patrons in a New Jersey sports bar when they (i.e,. ABC News) dispatched a gay couple to that locale. Then, they spiced it up by having another actor verbally harass them. Here are the first three paragraphs.
The news division of another broadcast network has been staging “news” in an attempt to show the prejudices of the American people. Only this time, it didn’t work out as planned.Â After planting a gay couple and an actor portraying a loud-mouthed anti-gay bigot at a New Jersey sports bar, ABC News learned that the bar’s patrons are, on the whole, a remarkably tolerant lot.
This wasn’t the first time that ABC staged “news” in an attempt to show the prejudices of those from more “conservative” segments of American society, supposedly macho sports fans or Southern whites. This network has not been alone in engineering events designed to show such prejudice. Three years ago, NBC sought to dispatch Muslims to a NASCAR race in order to show how “red-state” America would react.
These news producers seem convinced that the places to look for prejudice in America are places where conservatives congregate. Or, perhaps, it might be more accurate to say where people different from them congregate. They always do seem to discern prejudice in the “other.”
Now that I’ve whet your appetite, click here to read the rest.