Conservative radio host and, as it turns out, accomplished musician Dennis Prager has a seriously disturbing column this week at Townhall detailing how three pillars of the mainstream media — The Los Angeles Times, The New York Times and NPR — attempted to smear his name irrevocably for the sin of guest-conducting an orchestra in California last week.
In a long post worth a read in its entirety, Prager goes into detail about how those three bastions of respectable journalism took a small protest to his guest stint by some leftist musicians and tried to turn it into a campaign of political vitriol that Prager had himself started (narrator voice: he didn’t) and that exposed him as a hateful, bigoted, conservative fascist (narrator voice: he isn’t).:
In this column, I will focus on the media. I will dissect one issue that I know extremely well: the national and local coverage of the invitation extended to me to guest-conduct the Santa Monica Symphony Orchestra at the Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles. The concert took place last week.
I am well aware that this event is far less significant than many other issues. But every aspect of the reporting of this issue applies to virtually every issue the media cover. Therefore, understanding how The New York Times, the Los Angeles Times and NPR covered my story leads to an almost-perfect understanding of how the media cover every story where the left has a vested interest.
When it comes to straight news stories — say, an earthquake in Central America — the news media often do their job responsibly. But when a story has a left-wing interest, the media abandon straight news reporting and take on the role of advocates.
These named outlets reported on the “contentious” host with “divisive” views “roiled” the orchestra and was, to summarize, a real problem conductor who should not have been invited and was roundly despised by those he would conduct.
When you hear the true version of events from Prager himself, however, you find that the orchestra and community stood up for him — an unreported fact — and he did serve as guest conductor to a sold-out crowd. While acknowledging the erroneous and vicious way he was described by these three media outlets, his bigger problem seems to be that they chose to defend their leftist agenda by going as negative as possible, up to and including outright lies.
“The subject of the article could have easily (and more truthfully) been covered in a positive way, as something unifying and uplifting. ‘Despite coming from different political worlds, a leading conservative and a very liberal city unite to make music together’ — why wasn’t this the angle of the story?,” Prager asks.
“Similarly, instead of its headline, ‘Santa Monica Symphony Roiled by Conservative Guest Conductor,’ the Times could have used a headline and reported the very opposite: ‘Santa Monica Symphony Stands by Conservative Guest Conductor.’ That also would have conveyed more truth than the actual headline. But the difference between “roiled by” and “stands by” is the difference between a left-wing agenda and truth.”
It’s not just the specifics, it’s the big picture, and it’s pervasive. Down to the detail:
It is also worth noting that every mainstream news source, like the Los Angeles Times, identified me as either “right-wing” or “conservative.” Commentators and talk show hosts on the left, however, are virtually never identified as “left-wing” or “liberal.” This is because in the closed world of the left, the left is the norm and the right is the aberration.
You have all seen this with your own eyes in countless articles.
The reader of Prager’s column is left with the realization that left-leaning media not only inaccurately portrays circumstances to fit their political agendas, but that they are predisposed to be as negative and divisive as possible while doing it.
Which is increasingly odd in light of what’s been going on around the country in terms of political violence. When the Washington Post forgets that Rep. Steve Scalise was shot on a baseball field by a disgruntled lefty activist and runs stories like this, things have gotten weird:
That is truly remarkable.
Bravo to Prager for taking a stand and deconstructing the labyrinthine logic of those in the media who would use their platform to try to ruin his reputation. It’s not often conservatives take the time to fire back so completely. It runs counter to the nature of conservatism to be on the defense. Good for Prager for using his voice and refusing to be a victim.