Bias, Courage, & a Reporter

I have been a big fan of Anderson Cooper since I watched him cover the Arab Spring. His cynical brand of humor is certainly entertaining, but that’s not what I love and respect him for. He is honest – brutally so – and he has managed to be perhaps the most unbiased sounding reporter I have yet to hear. His interviews are marked by respect and fairness for those he is interviewing – he’s there to get facts, not score an agenda. He has regularly covered a variety of events and people, often stories that other reporters usually ignore or simply deem unworthy of international/national news.

All that being said, I can now add to this description that Anderson Cooper is gay. Guess what – it doesn’t change anything. He’s a great person, great reporter, and he happens to be gay.

I cannot begin to imagine the new flack he will receive over this announcement. I say new because there has been speculation for years about Cooper’s sexual orientation. The argument has been made that his orientation makes him biased and therefore the wrong person to be reporting on issues that involve, say, homosexuality. Funny thing is, everyone is biased – that’s a cold hard fact of life. Even funnier is any outcry that a homosexual is reporting on homosexuality, because heterosexuals can report on heterosexual issues without people becoming upset at them for their bias. Reporters are people, not robots, so they will all be biased about something. Christian reporters, Muslim, Jewish, etc. all have a bias that affects their worldview – and I submit that their bias is no different than the bias of homo or heterosexuals. What really matters is how one’s biases influence the telling of facts.

So long as Anderson Cooper (or any other reporter) continues to tell the facts – all of them – in the most unbiased way possible, I will support and respect him. The courage and class he exhibited in not only “coming out” but also the manner in which he did so has only increased my respect for him. He is clearly a man who has accomplished much in his life, likes who he is, and is deeply contented with himself – he’s truly happy. The world can learn much from a man like this.

Kudos to Anderson Cooper. 🙂


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