b-the change: Tell CNN that referring to Miss USA as a Hezbollah Spy is wrong

Rima Fakih, crowned Miss USA, poses for a picture.

photo courtesy of dailytoptrends.com

CNN – a “reliable” mainstream news source – published an article discussing the racist rumor that Rima Fakih, a Muslim Lebanese-American crowned Miss USA, is a spy for Hezbollah, a U.S. classified terrorist organization.

Although CNN initially denounced these rumors made by a neo-conservative blog and calls them “outlandish,” groups point out the poor choice that CNN took when it entitled the article as “Miss USA: Muslim Trailblazer Or Hezbollah Spy?” and probed the question throughout the piece.

“We believe that such discourse is counterproductive in today’s society, and contributes to a double standard placed on Arab and Muslim Americans,” Arab Community Center for Economic & Social Services (ACCESS) wrote in a letter to Octavia Nasr, CNN’s Senior Editor of Middle East Affairs.

Because the article probes for further discussion of the topic, it feeds into the racial profiling that neo-cons have started.

“Publishing this article gives credence to this ridiculous rumor, and creates a more hostile environment towards these communities,” ACCESS wrote. “It creates a space for people to question whether an ordinary American is associated with terrorism simply based on their ethnicity or religion.”

Although CNN changed the title from “Is Miss USA a Muslim Trailblazer?” and apologized for being too provocative in the last version, ACCESS remains dissatisfied and urges for editing the article in its entirety.

“We are disappointed that CNN, a reputable news outlet, would contribute to this unhealthy dialogue by publishing this article,” ACCESS said.

Leave a comment on CNN if you too are outraged at the publishing of this article.

June 7, 2010 by Priya
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