In 2020, The American Jewish Committee (AJC) held a vast study showcasing Anti-Semitism within the country, in which they discovered that around 46% of United States citizens are not familiar with the term Anti-Semitism. How is it possible that the term Anti-Semitism, the hatred responsible for 57.8% of religious hate crimes in 2018, is widely unknown to the public eye?
Jews make up less than 3% of the American population yet are the victims of the most hate crimes out of any religious minority in the United States. Somehow, the media shows little to no coverage on the horrors of Anti-Semitism.
Journalism educates. Journalism informs. Journalism teaches, but journalism only teaches on a spectrum of relevance. Readers may cross handfuls of articles about Muslim persecution in a given week but only one covering Jewish persecution. Where’s the diversity? The subjection of a minority often overshadows that of another. While hatred of any form is not tolerable, cherry-picking whose hatred to report expands the boundaries of warranted acrimony.
A journalist’s job is to inform the public on global issues. The problem is that journalists everywhere pick and choose which problems to represent based on what will gain them more popularity rather than which one needs more representation. This problematic lack of diversity in journalism does not lie within journalism but deep within society itself. Society views popularity as a sign of success, and for as long as that is true, the media will continue to exclude certain voices with the sole goal of growing their social status.
Journalists must stop falling into society’s trap of homogeneous media. Journalists not only have the responsibility to pick up the pen and write but to with the intention to make a difference. The way to achieve diverse coverage is to change the goal of journalism from writing for popularity to writing for a purpose. Once the goals and purposes of media are changed, diversity can be achieved.
If journalists continue to censor the calamities of Anti-Semitism, more Jewish lives will be lost and more Jewish spirits will be crushed between the walls of Anti-Semitism. If journalists continue to conceal the truths of reality then abhorrent acts and rhetorics of Anti-Semitism will pursue. And if journalists continue to push for success over purpose, then nothing will change. Journalism only narrowly explores the predicaments of our population; that need to be widened.