Black newspaper publishers expressed anger and frustration at President Obama’s failure to reach out to them at a recent panel at the National Newspaper Publishers Association convention.
“We don’t think the president has ever spoken to us. He’s spoken to the Latino community and he’s been specific,” said Robert W. Bogle, publisher of the Philadelphia Tribune and a former NNPA president. “This is the first president since Franklin Roosevelt that has not invited the Black Press to the White House (for an interview).” Although President Obama has met several times with African-American newspaper publishers at the White House, he has never addressed an NNPA convention. The NNPA News Service has made repeated requests for a one-on-one interview with the president, but those requests have been denied.
Some feel the opportunity (as members of the media) to craft Obama’s message for him has been lost:
Sonny Messiah Jiles, publisher of the Houston Defender, said: “We’re trying to give you feedback from the ground up, this is not an attack. We’re trying to educate you on how to shape our message because right now your message is not coming through to our readers or to the community. And in some cases, some of us aren’t clear on what your message is.”
In a piece entitled “Is President Obama Shutting out the Black Press,” Breitbart’s Rebel Pundit uncovers the growing disharmony in this community of publishers:
Unfortunately, as we in other media outlets are aware, the President doesn’t seem to like talking with any media all that much, as witnessed by his rare occasion to conduct formal press conferences and lay-up interviews with “main-stream media.” While President Obama’s adviser can relay messages to the Black Press at their annual conference regarding the need to defend the his record, it is falling on deaf ears of publishers who are looking for more access to get more answers to their unasked questions.
Then again, maybe that is just how President Obama prefers it…
If the Black Press has to spend their time asking questions about why they aren’t getting any interviews, then they aren’t getting chance to ask questions the president most likely doesn’t want to answer, like, where are the jobs Mr. President?