Posted on July 6, 2009

Confused: MSNBC’s Touré Doesn’t Understand Why ‘White Americans’ Think Jackson Coverage Is Excessive

Jeff Poor, NewsBusters, July 2, 2009

Feeling a little overwhelmed by the amount of media attention the networks have given to Michael Jackson? You’re not alone, according to a recent Pew Research Center poll, and that fact puzzles MSNBC contributor Touré.

Touré and David Wilson of appeared on the July 2 broadcast of Nancy Snyderman’s MSNBC’s show “Dr. Nancy” to examine the premise that Michael Jackson’s death was getting too much attention. Snyderman cited statics from the Pew Research Center for People & Press July 1 poll about the Jackson coverage.


The poll broke down the statistics by race and other prominent news stories, but Snyderman focused on the racial aspects of the poll.

“But let’s take a look at the coverage and how it’s seen through different eyes,” Snyderman continued. “African-Americans versus white Americans–70 percent of whites thought there has been too much coverage compared with just 38 percent of African-Americans. And another way of breaking down these numbers, more than half of African-Americans said the coverage has been just right compared with only one in four whites, 25 percent.”

The breakdown was unfathomable to Touré–who failed to understand why “white Americans” or anyone might be experience fatigue from the coverage of Jackson’s death.

“Michael Jackson was the biggest star, not black star–the biggest star, period–of his period,” Touré said. “{snip} This is a major American story. It’s not that the media shoving it down our throat, people want to hear about it.”

Wilson noted how abrupt Jackson’s departure was and said that may have played a role in the onslaught of news coverage.


“Maureen Orth, who contributes to Vanity Fair and NBC, was pretty damning in what she said, you know, early on,” Snyderman said. “This man was a pedophile, this man had drug abuse, we are, forgive the pun–whitewashing all of this.”

Wilson countered that Jackson had never been found guilty of pedophilia, despite settling out of court in 1993 in a civil case for $22 million when those accusations were made. {snip}