Religion and the Media Essay
“Religions such as Judaism and Christianity are portrayed fairly and sensitively in the media.” Do you agree? Firstly on a positive note, I believe that religion can reach many people in various parts of the world who may not otherwise be reached, via the media. This is essential in helping people understand a faith and its traditions and beliefs, which is particularly important in today’s multi-cultural society that we all share; the world is now a much smaller place. Christianity and Islam are both missionary religions and their leaders believe there is a religious duty to spread their understanding of God and his laws, to bring more people into the religion. The media is a great way to spread their message further, faster and to more people. Many atheists (non believers) and secularists (people who wish to assert the right to be free from religious rule and teachings and are neutral on matters of belief,) believe that the media help to cover up the evils of religion and help to maintain its mystification. Atheists are becoming more outspoken, but they believe they are ignored by mainstream media. I believe that the media can sometimes be used to encourage stereotyping and discrimination against certain religious groups, e.g. the Islamic faith is now believed to be largely made up of terrorists, due to the events of 11th September 2001, because the act that was committed was ‘done for God.’ The positive aspect to the media and religion, are the major events which can dominate the media and support the religious views and gatherings of the community. For example, when Pope John Paul came to Manchester in 1982, there were thousands of people, not necessarily Christians, in Heaton Park and many more watched the coverage on TV or read about the visit in the tabloids; people who share the same views or have different views can be brought together by the media. Prejudice often comes from ignorance so the media can often combat this...
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