“The news media played a large role in the dissemination of these public health claims…a primary filter that selects what claims from public health to cover and how to cover them.” (D’Arcangelis 431)
I find this statement to be both true and troubling because it really highlights the media’s power and how they can take something so significant like SARS and point a finger to who caused it. Citizens rely on the media as a source of news and coverage to important events happening all around the world. I find it ridiculous how much power we have invested in the media without ever really asking whether or not they are right. As D’Arcangelis points in “Chinese Chickens, Ducks, Pigs, and Humans, and the Technoscientific Discourses of Global U.S. Empire”, they get to bring out stories and choose “how to cover them.” The American people were quick to put the blame on the Chinese for SARS; however, this wasn’t constituted on its own. It’s through the media the American people were given a bias view of SARS and led to believe that the Chinese were the perpetrators.
D’Arcangelis points out the notion of the “other”, making them foreign and unknown giving the media the upper hand to display these people as the reason, the cause, and the problem; without a just and full understanding of them. The media uses the notion of the “other” to portray this different culture as a “toxic brew” without informing its viewers of the probable causes of differences in tradition or the way they do things. This brings me to cultural appropriation and checking one’s own privilege; realizing that people do things differently from us and that doesn’t make those things wrong it simply makes them different. I agree with D’Arcangelis’ view on how the media perpetrates a lot of this “othering” and racism by portraying these people as unhygienic instead of finding a different way to show the news in a more neutral and informative way. They tend to make generalizations based on western custom and contribute to the discrimination of people from other places, passing on their racist and classist views to all that watch them.