How should the Portland Press Herald present reality? Readers depend on the paper to learn what’s going on in the world. The effect of your coverage of the news can be seen in two Aug. 2 articles.

“Give and take at protest supporting Palestinians” recounted the “argument” between Bob Schaible (who blames Israel) and Natan Kahn (who blames Hamas). The article’s subtitle in the print edition (“Emotions run close to the surface …”) and the tone of the article concentrated on the divisiveness of the issue. This polarized “argument” story was presented as news on Page A8.

“Berlin to have joint house of worship” described how a rabbi, an imam and a priest are combining efforts for an “interfaith meeting place.” People of different faiths will be “praying under the same roof” at the “House of One.” The heartwarming “harmony” story was buried in Section D, relegated to human interest status.

The first-section “argument” news story of how divided people are weighed heavily. The buried “harmony” story became a barely noticed fluff piece.

How often do the pictures the Portland Press Herald paints reinforce the world’s problems? Can’t the pictures you paint show what’s right and thus reshape our perception of the world? The media’s portrayal of news not only reflects reality; it creates reality.

The pictures you paint do shape our reality. Why not use your brushes to make the world a better place? Fewer dark clouds and more blue skies, please.

Mike Berkowitz


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