When fairness benefits the oppressor

When fairness benefits the oppressor

Photo Illustration CW / Kylie Cowden

As media practitioners, we are encouraged to be fair judges of society and seek justice above all. But what happens when there is a player that is clearly a threat to society and the greater good? Should that player be treated with the same amount of respect and be given the same opportunities as other players?

Journalists and media practitioners often play the role of authority watchdogs in order to ensure there is social justice. When social justice isn’t being implemented equally, media practitioners have to intervene and inform the public of the threats that come with certain players. Many will see this as bias and many others will see it as a favor for the community. Which one is correct?

According to The Law of Concord, justice is a concept that derives from the principles of Natural Law. It’s meaning developed from the universal principles every person, regardless of race, gender, age, sexual orientation, etc., has a right to. Justice is a natural right that doesn’t change with time or geographical location and has to do with human dignity and our basic human rights.

On the other hand, fairness is defined as treating people in a way that does not favor some over others or “Impartial and just treatment or behavior without favoritism." In other words, fair isn’t just.

Thus being said, all players deserve justice, but not all players deserve fairness, especially if they pose a threat to society. I would also like to add that it is almost impossible to be a completely impartial and unbiased journalist.

With this, impartiality might not always be the best choice and it doesn’t always benefit the greater good. Not choosing is choosing, especially if one of the sides presents a threat. In these cases, fairness and impartiality benefit the oppressor and the greater evil. Since journalists are entitled to talk about/encourage social justice, there should not be any shame in condemning a side that disturbs justice and threatens human rights in any way. After all, we are not machines and our moral and human duties go beyond "seeking truth and reporting it." 

Luisa Sanchez is a senior majoring in journalism.

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