Despite Media's Pelosi Hype, Press Are Hypocrites About Diversity

We've often noted here on NewsBusters the astonishing and undisputed lack of political diversity at the highest levels of the media but it's also true that despite the fact that liberals dominate the media, they are decidedly hypocritical when it comes to non-political diversity, something liberals supposedly value.

That hypocrisy was manifested in spades Tuesday night for any television viewer flipping through the channels to see. Despite all the media's odes to diversity, when it comes to the highest levels of power, women need not apply, especially when it comes to television.

As New York Times tv critic Alessandra Stanley noted yesterday, "On a night that crowned Nancy Pelosi as the first female speaker of the House and Hillary Rodham Clinton as the Democratic front-runner for the 2008 presidential race, the tableau of men talking to men all across prime time was oddly atavistic — a men's club from around 1962."

I was struck by this as well. For all of Chris Matthews's talk of how Tennessee is filled with racist white people who wouldn't vote in his fellow Democrat Harold Ford (never mind that Matthews never said anything similar about the supposed racist tendencies of opponents of black Republican Michael Steele), or his extolling the "great opportunity for women" Pelosi's presumed ascent to leadership of the House, when it comes down to it, Chris Matthews is unwilling to put his money where his mouth is and give his anchor position at NBC to a woman. Judging by his ratings, it's hard to see how a female "Hardball" anchor could do any worse.

The interesting thing in all this is that women in national television probably outnumber men at the producer and correspondent levels. Men are a clear minority among journalism students. There are also more female local news anchors than male ones.

At the highest levels (network president, anchor, top correspondent), though, liberal white men like Chris Matthews and Keith Olbermann continue to rule the roost. You can bet that's not an accident.

Matthew Sheffield
Matthew Sheffield
Matthew Sheffield, creator of NewsBusters and president of Dialog New Media, an internet marketing and design firm, left NewsBusters at the end of 2013