Politics Yesterday, Today, And Tomorrow Essay

1265 words - 6 pages

Politics- Yesterday, Today, and Tomorrow

POLITICAL 110: US GOVERNMENT
Feb. 14th, 2016
Professor Mark Stallo

Politics- Yesterday, Today, and Tomorrow
Civil Liberties and Social Responsibility in American Government Today
Throughout our country’s history, civil liberties have influenced American social responsibility within the government. Civil liberties are fundamental rights and freedoms that are guaranteed by the Constitution. There are many examples of civil liberties mentioned in the Bill of Rights such as: freedom of speech, freedom of press, the right to a fair trial, the right to own property, and freedom of religion. (U.S. Department of Defense, 2016)
The ...view middle of the document...

National political leaders, however, did not condemn the communities for acting within their rights.
Media Events and Public Opinion
The media impacts society in both negative and positive ways. In America, the media is owned by only a handful of companies. That means every radio station, every TV channel, and every newspaper is control by the same few people. This flaw in media ownership can cause adverse effects on our population. It can be difficult to find a news story that is unbiased. Unbiased coverage of events is important because the media helps individuals form opinions about the issue being discussed.
In 2015 the federal government was called to action when dangerously high levels of lead was discovered in the Flint, Michigan drinking water. “The problems arose after the city broke away from Detroit's water system in 2014 and began taking water from the Flint River to save money, pending the completion of a new regional pipeline in 2016.” (CBS, 2015)People asked for help and the government responded by insisting that the water was safe to drink. The city announces that Flint’s water contains such a high level of trihalomethanes, a disinfectant byproduct. Though it’s in violation of the Safe Drinking Water Act, Officials say residents with normal immune systems have nothing to worry about. (MSNBC, 2016)
These events were covered by many news agencies reports negativity changed the public’s opinion regarding how responsible a government agency should be towards meeting the needs of the customers. The federal government completely ignored its responsibility to provide clean safe drinking water. The American people, in general, believed that the government would help them and were disappointed. Although the water crisis is currently limited to one city, it changes the opinion of Americans everywhere. People need to feel secure and protected. After the news coverage of this example, many Americans, especially those in Michigan, have lost their faith in the federal government.
Another media event that has influenced the public’s opinion of a government agency is the 2016 occupation of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge in Oregon. The media coverage of this event influenced both negative and positive perception of the local police and federal agents. The occupants were anti-government and armed with guns and explosives. The situation was successfully handled and the remaining protestors surrendered. The public’s opinion is negative because some people may feel that the protestors’ constitutional rights were violated. The news coverage consisted of interviews with protestors who claimed they were within their rights as American citizens to be armed and occupy the wildlife refuge. (CNN, 2016)
The news coverage also helped form positive opinions about the federal government and law enforcement. Both the federal government agents and local police are responsible for keeping the situation under control and...

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