Television news is a powerful medum for molding public opinion. Let’s look at a relatively unbiased news report on the Duchesne witch-hunt from Global News.
Have a listen to the report as Global reporter Morganne Campbell tries to balance the accusations against Duchesne and his response to them. The problem he faces is that the accusation she uses is unattributed and undocumented. Here’s a quote:
“He’s been accused of displaying white supremacist views after appearing on Faith Goldys podcast; she’s a known far-right white nationalist.”
Accused? By whom? And the second part of the sentence is damning by association. She then interviews a Student Council representative who says about those appearances:
“It’s really quite shamefull for the university to have that reputation here on campus and for him to be interacting with students.”
What reputation? What did he say that was shameful? We’re left to guess.
She then says that firing a professor has been done before, that a psychology teacher was fired from Acadia University in Nova Scotia. The implication is that firing Duchesne would just be business as normal, not the overturning of an honoured tradition of university independence.
Then there’s a faculty member saying it’s hard to know where to draw the line between academic freedom and providing a safe and inclusive environment, whatever that means.
So, as I say this was relatively unbiased, except for the weaponized words of “white supremicist,” which, you’ll note is an accusation, not a fact. Stay tuned.