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The media and the personal lives of politicians: Open or closed door?

Updated on March 26, 2012
Members of the media are the leaders of this country so they decides.
Members of the media are the leaders of this country so they decides.

The value we place onto a politician private life has a direct relationship towards the way he governs his office.

As a society, we're so not in touch with politics that the only time we know of a politician way about, is when his been caught having fun. Our politician's private life is more important to some of us than the constitution that governs our lives. For some reason, we seem to pay more attention to the media when the issue that is being discussed involves a politician being caught having an affair than when it involves politics.

We are imperfect beings having a loving experience; the result of our relationship will depends on how we balance our imperfection with our values. What we do in our private lives are our business. Yes, I understand why some people maybe concern with politicians private lives. To some degree, they do have a responsibility to comport themselves in a manner that shows leadership. After all, kids are forever using them as examples, their social image to some extent characterize the society they represent.

However, it's as equally unjustified for the media to project on the TV screen a politician's private life. If Malia fell while climbing up the presidential helicopter, I don't wish to know about this. If the 7 years old Sasha had a confrontation in school with her peer, the media shouldn't inform us about it. Those are private issues that should be dealt privately. If we the American people are the first to know about a private mater that involves the president daughter, they would be something morally wrong with this picture.

Therefore, from this outlook we can conclude that it's not the politician private life that our media is mostly concern with, but instead the issues surrounding the politician life which shares a direct relationship with how he governs the country. From this analysis derived this principle, “the value we place onto a politician private life has a direct relationship towards the way he governs his office”. I understand why a politician must behave in a manner that suit public opinion. However, any politician who must resign for reasons that does not affect the way in which he governs his office proved as a society we focus our attention on issues that doesn't contribute to progress.

Now, what has come in mind is perhaps an idea that is not clear to most but when we say “personal lives of politicians” to what degree of personal are we most concern with. If we're goring to debate this issue we must be clear as to where we stand, especially if we must limit broadcasting our politicians private lives.

Not too long ago, former president Bush senior's wife, Barbara Bush underwent an open heart surgery. An extremely risky procedure and considering her age, it was unlikely to have predicted a good outcome. The former president shared some tears over this, something that should not have been broadcast. This moment was a family matter and should have remained so, but somehow the media felt as though it was necessary to broadcast it. It is true that Barbara Bush is an important figure in American history but that doesn't permit us to broadcast Bush senior's personal moment. As a society, we would have been just as satisfied had we known she was OK without the media broadcasting the personal tears from a past presidential leader.

It is obvious to us all that the media will broadcast what ever issue they feel that would increase their rating. Well then, since the media has absolute power to broadcast whatever they wish is appropriate why then are we debating this issue? The question should be does the media have a moral responsibility not to broadcast issues that shares some level of sensitivity. That is to say, should the vice president mother, Catherine Eugenia who is presently being admitted to the University of Pennsylvania hospital be broadcast to us or is it a family matter that should remain private. In another word, Is it morally right for the media to broadcast to us her symptoms and the reason that led her to be hospitalized? That is the extent in which I argued the personal lives of politicians should be a close door.

Some issues are better left untold than said because truly they serve no purpose in politic. Politic is the process by which people form decisions but those decisions derived from information gathered. However, not every piece of information relates to politics. Sometimes, the information that the media use to broadcast are those pieces of information that shares no direct relationship with politic. For that reason, I'll say again, to what degree of personal lives of politicians are we most concern with as a society.

The fight to preserve free press is as important as our Civil Right, but the right for the media to invade our private lives is an attack on our Civil Right. So you see, we have to be careful how we approach this issue because by looking at it from a one dimensional view, we may missed out on some key factors. I believe that they maybe more dimensions than just three, therefore we should consider open our minds to uncertainties, which maybe part of the fourth dimension which entail a new way of looking at things.


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    • profile image


      3 years ago

      Hi Lindsay and Amy I really hope you reply even thuogh it has been 2 years since you've posted on here I'm so glad to have found this site. My name is Nichole and I am almost 23 years old, I have suffered with NDPH since I was 16. I was a Sophomore in high school, it was near the end of 2006 when I got sick with bronchitis and the flu and coughed and coughed and noticed I had a really terrible headache with it. Once the sickness went away I noticed that the migraine, that pain in my head that had been so foreign to me prior to this, had not gone away, and still has not to this day I had to be home schooled and quit all of my sports I was a part of My friends went on with their lives and forgot about me while I had a constant 24/7 pain that I could not get rid of no matter how hard I tried or how much it killed me, physically and mentally. We began with Chiropractors, decompression machines, adjustments, etc. I traveled hours to probably 20 different Chiropractors that all said that they knew what I had and exactly how to treat it. I've tried natural supplements, over the counter medications, 6 Occipital nerve blocks in the back of my head, massage, diets of no wheat, no gluten, no sugar, vegan only, all with no progress. My family understands the pain and how I can be ok one minute but then pick up something slightly too heavy, walk a little too fast, sit down a little too hard and I will have to be in my room with blankets over my windows and absolutely no sound because the pain is so unbearable. It is so frustrating because I too feel like a burden, like ok you have a headache so what? Why can't you stay out late or get up early or work long shifts or run around and be active? But it is so much more than a headache It's become a way of life and althuogh I think I handle it well I know that deep down I am depressed and deeply saddened by it because anytime I stop to think about it or talk to anyone about it I cry instantly. Lindsay, I too have tried the things you have with no help and at Cleveland Clinic where they did my nerve blocks they told me about the program where you stay there for an amount of time. My option they told me about when staying there was a few weeks, they would put me on all these medications and steroid medications, have physical therapy and counseling as well. They also said the FDA would soon be approving the Botox injections, I'm sorry those did not help you either NDPH has altered my life drastically, I can't work as much, I can't run around and just be free, I can't take a full load of classes at a time Basically I just want to thank you for having this site Amy, it is really more helpful than you know, just knowing that I'm not the only one to suffer from this and that I'm not the only one that has this pain to think about every single second of every day Bless you and bless all your readers, may you all find relief from the pain -Nichole

    • profile image


      4 years ago

      hi i think that tony babbbot is bad and he just will burn

    • Amhere profile image


      7 years ago from Bilaspur, Chhatt?sgarh, India

      you are having very goo observation !!!...and a great style of writing.The condition is same here in India,with politicians on the top of corruption ...looking forward for more articles from you

    • Jason R. Manning profile image

      Jason R. Manning 

      8 years ago from Sacramento, California

      Great Hub. Unfortunately, what is considered moral or off limits in the media is based on their values and what their elitist circles believe. The media regularly judges what they believe is important and therefore arrogantly pick and choose which story must be covered. As good as the internet is at uncovering bias and disgraceful news coverage; I fear this has only contributed to the heat of competition. Ratings are to media outlets what P & L statements are to Wall St. Modern reporting has deteriorated to sloppy stories and missed facts in the name of first to break the story. As long as these organizations benefit from ratings, they are going to keep the status quo. It is up to us to carefully discern where we get our news. UP!

    • Coolbreezing profile imageAUTHOR

      James Dubreze 

      9 years ago from New York, New York

      Amen --thanks for your reply

    • Steve Orris profile image

      Steve Orris 

      9 years ago from NE Ohio

      These are very good points. It's almost humorous to hear "moral responsibilties" and the "media" in the same conversation. The media is quick to point out the flaws of politicians (especially Republicans) but they never admit when there are wrong. Who watches over the media and keeps them in line? We the People - that's who. Thanks to the Internet this has gotten much easier. Information is available in microseconds. We can hear opinions from thousands of people instead of just a few that sit behind a desk with bright lights and cameras. Whether you respect my opinions or not I am free to write them (so far). Indeed, the Constitution is far more important than the media, the president, or any one person's private life. If the media would report the important news instead of trying to entertain or scare us we would all be better off.


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