Inexpressing their perspectives, editors of emerging and currentpolitical issues usually portray bias in their writing. Sometimes,the bias may be deemed to be directed towards a particular audienceso as to influence their decision-making process in regard to a givensubject matter. Bias by omission and bias by placement are two kindsof biases that editors may use in writing their story. Bias byomission is whereby one side of an article is left out, or a seriesof articles are left over a period of time. In this case, facts thatattempt to disprove conservative or liberal claims, or facts thatsupport conservative or liberal beliefs become ignored (Baker,Tim and Steve 64).This form of bias may occur within a story or over the entire storywhere news outlet tends to report one set of events while ignoringthe other. On the other hand, bias by placement is whereby a mediaprints or gives a story in a manner that tends to downplayinformation that supports either the liberal or conservative views(Baker,Tim and Steve 72).In this report, these two forms of biases will be discussed in regardto two articles giving information concerning same-sex marriage. Thetwo articles are Same-sexcouples denied marriage licenses writtenby Mike Wynn andSupreme Court Rules Gay Marriage Is a Nationwide Right byJess Bravin.
InSame-sexcouples denied marriage licenses, biasby placement is well depicted because Clerk Kim Davis is portrayed toignore one side of the same-sex marriage. Because of her religiousobjections, she goes ahead and denies at least four same-sex couplesmarriage licenses. This is bias by placement because the story onlyat the side of Kim Davis refusing to offer licenses to the same-sexcouples and tries to downplay the side of those supporting the ideaof same-sex marriage. This is well portrayed in the story since,despite the federal court having ordered the issuance of the same-sexmarriage licenses, Davis went ahead and instructed her deputy clerksnot to offer any licenses (Wynn 1). This story, in a way, tries toshow that same-sex partners are still facing troubles when obtainingmarriage licenses despite the court ruling to support their rights.Religious belief can be perceived as a major hindrance towardssupporting same-sex marriages because those opposing same-sexmarriage feel that their religious convictions will be hurt bysupporting the idea of same-sex marriage.
Also,there is bias by omission in the Same-sexcouples denied marriage licenses articlebecause the media does not offer support why same-sex marriagepartners should be provided with licenses, but on the other hand,only provides information why the same-sex-marriage partners aredenied licenses. For instance, in the story, it is apparent thatDavis does not support the idea of giving same-sex partners marriagelicenses based on her religious convictions (Wynn 1). Also, anevangelist supports Davis argument by indicating that providingsame-sex marriage partners with marriage licenses constitutes forcingpeople to compromise their religious convictions especiallyChristians. This may influence the decision of the reader because thereader may end up opposing same-sex marriages based on his/herreligious convictions.
InSupremeCourt Rules Gay Marriage Is a Nationwide Right,bias by omission is evident because in the entire story one side ofsame-sex marriage has been ignored. In this media, the side of theliberals has been ignored because the story has entirely supportedthe side of those supporting the idea of same-sex marriage. The fightfor democracy and equal rights has been portrayed as the chiefreasons why the same-sex marriage has been supported by differentindividuals. The story depicts how supporters of the same-sexmarriage reacted to the court’s decision of supporting the idea asnational right (Bravin 1). This has an influence on the readerbecause the reader may support same-sex marriage in an attempt tosupport the notion of equal rights.
Apartfrom bias by omission, bias by placement is also evident in theSupremeCourt Rules Gay Marriage Is a Nationwide Right article.This form of bias is in the story because the story tries to downplaythe side that opposes same-sex marriage. From the story, supportersof the same-sex marriage are depicted to enjoy their rights bydeclaring same-sex marriage as a national right (Bravin 1). Also, bythe president supporting the decision of the court to declaresame-sex marriage as a national right, the story attempts to downplaythe side of those opposing same-sex marriages. This is instrumentalin influencing the reader because the reader may end up supportingthe idea of same-sex marriages due to the fear of contempt of court.
Fromreading the two articles on same-sex marriage, it is evident thatthere are biases that play an important role in influencing thedecision of the reader. In the two articles, the reader can havecontradicting views concerning the idea of same-sex marriage forinstance, despite the idea being a fight for equality, it goesagainst religious convictions. This being the case, the reader canmake a rational decision on whether to support or oppose same-sexmarriage.
Baker,Brent H, Tim Graham, and Steve Kaminsky. Howto Identify, Expose & Correct Liberal Media Bias.Alexandria, Va: Media Research Center, 1994. Print.
Bravin,Jess. Supreme Court Rules gay Marriage Is a Nationwide Right. TheWall Street Journal,2015. Print.
Wynn,Mike. Same-sex Couples Denied Marriage Licenses. Courier-Journal,2015. Internet Resource, Retrieved fromhttp://www.courier-journal.com/story/news/local/2015/08/14/same-sex-couple-denied-marriage-license-rowan-co/31614669/