Philly Sports Live

Political Filmmaker’s Next Task: Restore JoePa’s Name

[BF] – John Ziegler, a political filmmaker and radio host best known for his exuberant support of (and public fallout with) Sarah Palin, has a new mission: exposing what he believes to be the unfair tarnishing of late Penn State football coach Joe Paterno’s reputation…An energetic Ziegler replied in under a minute to BuzzFeed’s e-mail query. He has no obvious ties to Penn State, and says his lifelong concerns about media bias drive his interest in the issue. “I think the Penn State story is one of the worst examples of media malpractice that we’ve ever seen,” he said. “It was very clear to me early on this was a story ripe for media malpractice, but it was worse than I ever could have imagined.”  The problem, according to Ziegler, started in November of 2011 when the NBA was on strike, football was in a lull and there was little other sports news. It’s at that point, he says, that ESPN and other outlets began to turn what was a story about Jerry Sandusky into a story about Paterno…Ziegler has made a career of sweeping in to become the loudest voice of an outnumbered minority on a controversial issue. In his op-ed about Sarah Palin in The Daily Caller he referred to himself as a sort of “shadow spokesman” for the former governor, who gave up much of his life and savings to rally for her before their falling-out.

Sure, it could have been the whole “NBA strike/football lull” problem.  That, or media outlets (mainly ESPN) thought that the systematic rape of underprivileged children who wouldn’t be able to defend themselves and total ineptness of an entire major university’s leadership in making sure that things like that don’t happen under it’s watch might be a big story.  Oh, and the university happens to have HALF A MILLION active, prideful, SPORT-LOVING alumni.  One or the other. (Translation: This would have been the top story if the apocalypse were happening later the same day – not saying it’s right or wrong, just saying it makes sense for news outlets to cover it.  Also, not saying they covered it the right way, but to say that they were covering it because of a “lull” doesn’t make sense.)

But anyway, I’m not here to tell you what to think or tell you my opinion on the situation.  I just know that a lot of readers feel the same way as Ziegler and thought it was interesting that this was happening.  Hopefully this turns out better than his situation with Palin.