WJI Times Observer
Case in Point column
Christian journalists who labor in the vineyard of mainstream newsrooms often find themselves in a journalistic Gaza strip – distrusted by their media colleagues and by their church friends. And much of the elite press thinks of evangelical Christians as a sub-species of the Americus populus. Many reasons exist for this attitude, but I would argue that much of the blame falls on us evangelicals who have absented ourselves from America’s media culture.
We held our courses in NYC, Washington and Los Angeles this summer, and hosted such scribal luminaries as Hendrick Hertzberg, Seth Mnookin, Randall Balmer, Seth Lipsky, James Fallows, Carl Cannon and Tom Bethell to join us. To a person, these well known journalists were warm, personable and gracious. It is no secret why the great ones are great – people like to talk to them. Simply put, they are nice people. Recently The New Yorker, no evangelical ghetto-dwelling publication, ran fair and balanced articles on institute friends at King’s College (Nick Paumgarten) and Hugh Hewitt (Nick Lemann). The Atlantic Monthly customarily treats evangelicals with respect and dignity. Last year, the Columbia Journalism Review (Gal Beckerman) ran a fair and thorough story about WJI.
There are lots of examples of tendentious reporting in the mainstream press. But the really good journalists will do it fair, balanced and insightful.