As a supporter of Israel and the Jewish people, you probably look for news from the Holy Land in newspapers and magazines, as well as on TV, radio, and on the Internet. If so, you’ve noticed that all too often the reports reflect badly on Israel, portray the Palestinians as persecuted underdogs, and downplay the true nature of Islamist terrorism.
It would be wonderful if everybody shared your love of Israel, but you can at least demand that that the media be balanced, fair, and get their facts straight. You can’t demand that journalists all become friends of Israel — but you can insist they approach the subject fairly.
What to do:
- Read newspapers and other publications faithfully. Stay informed and know your facts.
- When you believe a story is biased against Israel, take notes about specific errors. Do some research if necessary to gather evidence to refute the errors.
- Send an email, write a letter, or make a phone call asking the news outlet to make a correction or to present an opposing view to balance the biased story or report.
Tips on writing letters or emails to the media:
- Be specific. An angry message that does nothing more than accuse a reporter or news outlet of being anti-Israel or anti-Semitic will likely not get published and will do little to help Israel’s cause. You stand a better chance of changing people’s minds and hearts about Israel by answering charges with specific facts that refute those charges.
- Respond promptly to biased reports on the same day, if possible. The longer you wait, the less chance that your letter or message will be published.
- Keep it brief. Newspapers have specific guidelines on the maximum length of letters from readers. Determine the newspaper or website’s editorial policy before sending your message and follow those guidelines.
- Be direct, but courteous and respectful.
- When a reporter, columnist, or article does a good job of presenting Israel’s situation, send a positive letter.