Ida B wells, Southern Horrors

In Ida B Wells article “Southern Horrors”, she sheds light on the topic of lynching throughout America, but also on the media coverage of it. She provides a great critique of the media, in a time when that was not accepted by anyone of the black community, but also a woman.

When she published one of her first works in Memphis the printing press that was used to publish the document was smashed by an angry white mob. She was forced to flee the state for her own safety and go to New York, where her work would be a bit more accepted. In her article “Southern Horrors” she directly addresses how members of the black community are portrayed by the media in the South. They are described as barbaric, and that they are unable to be polite without the guidance of their former white owners. Articles like this were widely accepted by the white community, and skewed the perception of African Americans for years to come.

This is still an issue that we face today. Consistently white americans who commit crimes are described as having mental illnesses and a troubled past. Black Americans are however portrayed in a much more violent light, again displaying the bias in the media that still persists today. Its interesting to read about how activists recognized this problem in the media almost 150 years ago. But, its disheartening that its a problem we still face today.

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