Providing a (admittedly diminishing) platform for the public propagation of terrorist spokesmen and their violence prone organizations is not a good way to reverse the diminution of your ratings.
CNN is set to air a full hour special tonight called Jane’s Fight for Animal Rights. It features representatives from the hardcore, extremist animal rights fundraising groups, PETA, the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS), Sea Shepherd, In Defense of Animals, Farm Sanctuary, and Mercy for Animals — NOT ONE of which represents mainstream values. It also includes cameo appearances from celebrity spokespeople for animal rights, Bob Barker, Pierce Brosnan, and others used to legitimize extremist views.
Media depends on ratings to stay on the air, so it’s understandable that TV networks sometimes select groups whose media-grabbing antics and out-of-the-mainstream views makes them newsworthy, at least as representing a minority point of view. What makes CNN’s show so reprehensible is their lack of balance, their lack of providing people representing the majority view the opportunity to refute extremist claims with fact-based evidence.
The result is that CNN’s show is providing radicals a platform to be seen as America’s go-to resource when it comes to animal issues. Thus, PETA, a group that has refused to condemn violence committed in the names of animals, HSUS, a group with a spokesperson who said his goal is the abolition of agriculture, and Sea Shepherd whose leader, Paul Watson was recently placed on Interpol’s International Wanted List all get free publicity and the CNN bully pulpit.