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Scott's Opinion Is Showing

Reported by Judy - July 30, 2004 -

Even when the Fox News "Fair and Balanced" banner precedes a segment, anchor Jon Scott can't help expressing his own opinion, as he did today (July 30).

Orlando Salinas reported from Miami (9:46 a.m. EDT) on a dispute involving an atheist who gave an invocation at a public meeting. Salinas quoted the atheist as saying he thought witches and Satanists should be invited to give invocations, too.

Salinas said local officials said that wouldn't happen any time soon. Scott replied, "Let's hope."

Many, if not most, Americans might agree with Scott, but that's not the point. As a journalist, Scott is supposed to let a spectrum of newsmakers express the opinions, not express his own. When he does express his own opinion, it is given extra weight because of his authority as a "fair and balanced" journalist who viewers see every day and have come to know and maybe trust.

What Scott did was wrong journalistically. Fox has always claimed that its news shows are "fair and balanced" and only its shows like Hannity and Colmes and The O'Really Factor involve opinion. Scott's performance today is one more example of how that just isn't so.