Shameless Bias in Presidential Science

first_imgWhy do “science” news sites go after the Republican candidate only? This is another arena Donald Trump could show is rigged.This entry is about news bias; it does not take sides. Readers are free to make their own conclusions about the better candidate. But a fair result can only come from getting facts straight and reporting them with balance. Since these news sites quoted below often defend Darwinian evolution, it’s instructive to see if their bias on that subject shares commonalities with bias in the political arena.All the Lies That Are Fit to PrintMedical Xpress often regurgitates articles from The Conversation, a blog-like site written by scientists. Although this piece is marked “Opinion” fair enough, it’s based entirely on a false premise. “Opinion: Trump is wrong, I treat combat veterans with PTSD, and they are not weak,” opines Joan Cook, bouncing off a widely-misreported comment from Trump a few weeks ago. In response to a question from a veteran who began a ministry to serve other veterans suffering mental health problems with PTSD, Trump agreed that they need help. The problem is, Trump never said that veterans with PTSD are weak! (see Fox News YouTube clip of original statement by Trump, and remarks by General Boykin, who was present). The one who asked the question explained on FRC’s Washington Watch (Oct 8) that he didn’t take it that way at all, nor did anyone else in the room. Some reporter took the statement out of context, ran with it in the newspapers, and it became an urban myth. Neither Joan Cook nor the website editors decided to fact-check the statement. Yet the headline shouts in bold type that “Trump is wrong”. Did Cook make any effort to fault Hillary Clinton for her numerous lies that are coming to light from her own emails that she failed to submit to Congress under subpoena, and additional lies she stated under oath? Not a peep.What Hits the Fan Is Not Evenly DistributedThe country can’t stop talking about lewd comments Trump made 11 years ago, and no one – not even his supporters – are defending the statements (certainly not CEH, either). But there’s plenty of mud to sling on both sides of the debate stage. Trump denies actually doing anything to women, although everyone is weighing evidence of claims by seven women who suddenly came out of the woodwork since the second debate to accuse him of groping or inappropriately touching them over a decade ago. Why they never brought these accusations up till now—just a few weeks before the election—seems highly suspicious, a bit like the Anita Hill tactic. Trump is actively trying to present evidence to refute their claims, such as friendly quotations from those same women in recent years (never mentioning abuse), or from eyewitnesses present when the abuse supposedly occurred. At the time of this writing, it’s hard to say who’s right.But for years at least four women have accused former President Bill Clinton, the Democrat candidate’s husband, of worse sexual assaults, and one of them claims she was raped. That’s all in addition to the well-documented Monica Lewinsky affair that led to Clinton’s impeachment in 1998. Fox News anchor Sean Hannity has interviewed all four women. They all described how candidate Hillary Clinton attacked them and threatened them, never defending them. There’s also the tape of Hillary laughing at a rapist she defended in her early law practice; she got him off the hook after he had raped a 12-year-old girl. Then there’s the hypocrisy that Hillary Clinton has stated firmly in speeches that rape victims have a right to be believed. Her website contained that statement, Hannity claims, but it inexplicably disappeared the following day. Hannity says it was because it put her in a vulnerable position: someone could ask, “Then why didn’t you believe Juanita Broaddrick?”So what do you expect from Live Science? Fair reporting of these facts? No; twice no! In one piece, Sara Miller defends the long-delayed accusations of the women who are now accusing Trump, but says absolutely nothing about the Clintons. Same in another Live Science entry by Sara Miller, “Five Misconceptions About Sexual Assault.” Again, there’s no mention of the Clintons. The entire piece is aimed at discrediting Donald Trump, this time spreading the blame at one of the Republican senators who came to his defense. Her article gives an appearance of scientific credibility by quoting “Yolanda Moses, a professor of anthropology at the University of California, Riverside” as an authority. This is the half-truth fallacy, a dangerous form of propaganda, accompanied by card stacking and misuse of authority.Sexual assault, even verbal abuse, is never excusable. Reporters, however, owe it to their readers to give a balanced presentation of the facts. It’s all the more egregious when the bias is on an alleged “science” news site. By common admission, the mainstream media are overtly biased against Republicans and conservatives. Why are science news sites even talking about politics, much less taking sides? Where is the “science”? The last thing a science site should try to become is a propaganda arm for a political party.They’re not even trying to be unbiased any more. This is blatant political advocacy. The media, including the science media, are in the tank for Hillary. They are openly pushing to prevent Trump from winning—whatever it takes—even when it means selling their souls. So this is scientific? (Visited 45 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

Peace restored in communities after xenophobic attacks

first_imgPeace has returned to South African communities riven by the recent xenophobic violence, and the supply of food, shelter and other support for foreigners forced to flee their homes has been stepped up, Minister in the Presidency Jeff Radebe told a press briefing on Tuesday. Children read anti-xenophobia booklets during a peaceful walk against attacks on foreigners, in Mzamomhle Township near East London in the Eastern Cape on Sunday 26 April. (Image: GCIS) • Attacks on foreign nationals: South Africa responds • Our African bonds defy borders • Booklet: Stop attacks on foreign nationals • We Are the World Africa sings out against xenophobia • South Africa to host anti-xenophobia football friendlies Staff writer“We want to reassure those who have plans to travel to South Africa that our government is in charge. The violence has stopped,” Radebe told the media at the first briefing by the Inter-Ministerial Committee (IMC) on migration, held in Pretoria on 28 April.“We are now working hard to ensure that nobody within the borders of our country is victimised based on their country of origin.”The IMC was set up to examine the underlying causes of the tension between South Africans and foreigners, and deal with the aftermath of the violence. Radebe chairs the committee.Read the full media briefing statementThe victimsThe briefing confirmed that seven deaths can be linked to the recent outbreak of violence. Four of the victims were foreigners and three South African.The details of the victims, nationality, nature of death and status of investigation are as follows.NAME OF VICTIMNATIONALITYNATURE OF DEATHSTATUS OF CASEMarcus NatasEthiopianPetrol bombing in UmlaziInvestigations continueMuvo (other names unknown)ZimbabweanAttacked by a mob in ChatsworthInvestigations continueDava SabastioMozambicanAttacked by a mob in VerulamInvestigations continueShaofic Shaof Ul AlamBangladeshiGunshot in PlessislaerA South African male arrestedThabo Owen MzobeSouth AfricanGunshot in NtuzumaTwo South African males arrestedAyanda DlaminiSouth AfricanGunshot in Bekhithemba (Umlazi)Somali national arrestedPetros DlaminiSouth AfricanChatsworthInvestigations continuePreliminary investigations suggest the death of Mozambican citizen Manuel Jossias, also known as Emmanuel Sithole, to be the result of a criminal act, not xenophobic violence.“The IMC on behalf of the South African nation extends its deepest condolences to the families of those deceased, and wishes those injured a speedy recovery,” Radebe said.The National Prosecuting Authority is making the prosecution of cases related to attacks on foreigners a priority, the briefing was told. “Perpetrators of these crimes can expect that prosecutors will ask courts to impose sentences of direct imprisonment.”The Department of Justice and NPA have set up dedicated courts in KwaZulu-Natal to ensure the speedy prosecution of the cases. The South African Police Service has allocated detectives in all provinces to expedite the investigations in cases related to xenophobic violence.“We are not taking a business-as-usual approach,” Radebe said. “We want to ensure that the perpetrators of these vile acts are dealt with as speedily as possible.”Watch the full media briefing:Caring for migrants in sheltersThe Department of Social Development is coordinating the government’s material and psychological support for 812 foreigners currently living in shelters.“We encourage those who require counselling services to call 0800 428 428,” Radebe said. “The trauma counselling call centre is operational 24 hours a day. We have so far provided 2 000 mattresses, food, blankets, dignity packs, baby formula and clothing items to displaced persons at the various shelters.”The Department of Health is providing primary healthcare and medical services to foreigners, wherever needed but including in the temporary shelters.The social development department has also assessed conditions at temporary shelters in KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng to determine the immediate needs of women and children.“Pregnant women and people with disabilities have been transferred to secure shelters,” Radebe said. “Retired social workers were also deployed to the temporary shelters to strengthen the psycho-social services.”Radebe said reports that some foreigners had already begun to return to their homes in South African communities were encouraging. Sufficient numbers had returned home to allow the Elsburg Shelter to be closed on Friday 23 April. Those still not able to leave were taken in at the Primrose Shelter.“As the situation continues to stabilise, we call on foreign nationals who are still in shelters to work with the departments of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs and Community Safety to ensure a smooth reintegration process,” he said. Radebe also urged communities to welcome returning foreigners and help with their reintegration.Documentation and verificationThe Department of Home Affairs is working to verify the immigration status of displaced migrants, Radebe said. Those in the country illegally were being detained for prosecution or deportation.“In cases where the displaced persons have no documentation or they are in the country illegally, the department still captures their details,” he said. “Their information and fingerprints are captured in order to provide documentation to facilitate their repatriation.”Home Affairs is also working with foreign missions in South Africa to ensure the smooth repatriation of those wanting to voluntarily return to their home countries. About 1 507 documented foreigners are currently awaiting repatriation.“We have thus far repatriated a total of 1 997 undocumented migrants from both KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng temporary shelters, 911 to Malawi, 316 to Mozambique, 753 to Zimbabwe, and 17 to Tanzania,” Radebe said.South Africa still a home for all AfricansThe government is committed to finding a lasting solution to prevent the “shameful” attacks from happening again, Radebe told the briefing.“We believe that issues of migration can only be resolved by taking a holistic approach that deals with all issues highlighted by communities. This includes identifying and resolving challenges highlighted by local traders.” The Department of Small Business Development will be investigating these issues.Despite the tragic events of the past weeks, Radebe said, Africans from other countries still consider South Africa a safe place to visit.In March 10 548 people from Ethiopia, Malawi, Mozambique, Tanzania and Zimbabwe visited South Africa. In April, 13 533 people visited from these countries.“We are heartened that our brothers and sisters on the continent still consider our country a multicultural society that welcomes and promotes interaction among people of different backgrounds,” Radebe said.last_img read more