Posts tagged ‘straw man argument’

“Media hysteria”

Maul Talkers often say that pit bulls are the victims of “media hysteria”. A Google Search on the terms: media hysteria pit bull yields 14,000 results. It’s the media that makes life miserable for pit bulls; it’s the media that has damaged the breed; it’s the media that creates hysteria about pit bulls… According to Maul Talkers, the only time the media reports (or identifies) a pit bull correctly is when it is a “positive pit bull” article. In any other context, such as a serious or fatal pit bull mauling, the media erroneously identified the dog and once again victimized pit bulls.

The continuing media hysteria generated by bad press and bad owners – Rescueeverydog.org
Breed Specific Legislation and Media Hysteria Make life Miserable for Pit Bull Owners – Pitbulllovers.com
Could have been ANY breed of dog that ‘attacked’ you, BUT since it was a PitBull AND media hysteria, YOU don’t blame THE OWNER. Shame on you. – Onekingstar

The truth about the media is that they report gore and death, and pit bulls rarely fail to deliver. Pit bulls are also the subject of berserking incidents, when a single pit bull attacks and seriously injures multiple people. The media traditionally reports such dramatic events. Back when rabies killed many people, the media reported dramatic headlines like, “FIGHT WITH A MAD DOG.; Policeman Kills It While Its Teeth Are Buried in His Leg.” There was a reason for this too. A bite by a rabid dog without treatment meant a horrible death by hydrophobia.

“Media sensationalism”

Maul Talkers use the term “media sensationalism” to minimize serious and fatal pit bull maulings. Their intention is to allege that the attack is “no big deal” and is merely a matter of media sensationalism. According to Google News Archives, the term was adopted in the mid 1980’s when the first round of U.S. cities began adopting pit bull laws. The term is also closely related to: media hysteria.

Media should stop the sensationalizing about pit bulls
$2.95 – Chicago Sun-Times – NewsBank – Aug 10, 1987
But since it was a pit bull, the media milked it for all they could. … media start providing more of the truth about these dogs, and less
The Controversy Over Pit Bulls
Pay-Per-View – Los Angeles Times – ProQuest Archiver – Jul 11, 1987
Your editorial “Muzzling the Pit Bull” (July 1) was pure sensationalism. … The time has come for the media to stop …
Council to get Pit Bull Measure Without Staff …
$2.95 – Sacramento Bee – NewsBank – Aug 28, 1987
Other speakers said the ordinance and others like it were becoming popular because of unfair, sensational media coverage
Pit Bull Politics Raises Howl in S. Florida
$2.95 – Miami Herald – NewsBank – Jul 4, 1985
Sensational media attention, they contend, unfairly makes every pit bull seem like a land shark, a four-legged biting machine. …

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