ABC News Discourages the Wearing of American Flag Pins by Reporters-True!
Summary of eRumor:
A boycott of the ABC television network is encouraged because the executives at ABC news are said to have told reporters they could not wear American flag lapel pins or any other patriotic insignia. The network said that ABC should remain as neutral as possible.
The terrorist attacks on America of September 11, 2001 resulted in a wave of patriotism that had not been seen in decades. The shared enthusiasm for the country and the flag were strong and widespread.
It created difficulties for reporters, however, who try to professionally earn and keep people’s trust by avoiding personal partisan displays while reporting the news.
It was not only ABC but many other media outlets who struggled with trying to preserve their image as journalists while at the same time trying to avoid seeming unpatriotic in the crisis.
Associated Press writer David Bauder quoted Barbara Walters as saying that ABC discouraged its reporters from wearing the flag because “…it may confuse the audience.” She was also quoted as saying that there was concern whether someone who decided not to wear a flag in the midst of all the others might be viewed as less patriotic.
Last updated 04/19/02
A real example of the story as it has been circulated:
Yesterday, the brass at ABC News issued orders forbidding reporters to wear lapel pin American flags or other patriotic insignia. Their reasoning was that ABC should remain neutral about “causes”. Since when is support for preventing our death & destruction some sort of a cause? Since when is patriotism to be discouraged. I urge you to boycott ABC and its sponsors and affiliates.
Please forward this to as many as you can.