Since the inception of the printing press, media has been a tool to dehumanize and sensationalize communities of color in the United States. Perjorative labels like “savages,” “illegals,” and “terrorists” are harmful examples of the way media has chosen to describe people of color. Research shows that dehumanizing coverage contributes to implicit and explicit biases of a viewing audience. Racist media coverage harms our communities through misinformation and perpetuating stereotypes.
In addition to people of color having access to an open and affordable Internet, our media platforms should reflect the diversity of our country. Newsrooms should hire a diverse workforce to ensure a diversity of perspectives. Traditional media outlets have a responsibility to take pundits and personalities off the air that promote hate speech. Editorial policies should increase the diversity of voices and eliminate the use of racists labels.