"Obsessive coverage of urban crime by local television stations, UCLA law professor Jerry Kang argued in the Harvard Law Review ... is one of the engines driving lingering racism in the United States. So counterproductive is local broadcast news, he says, that it is time the FCC stopped using the number of hours a station devotes to local news as evidence of the station's contribution to the 'public interest,' which has traditionally been a requirement for a broadcast license." Kang cites psychological research that racist assumptions linking people of color with violence and crime are weakened, after "footage of a respected black figure like Bill Cosby or Martin Luther King, Jr." is viewed. Local TV news reinforces racist stereotypes, Kang argues, pointing to a 13-month study of Los Angeles stations that found crime stories led broadcasts "51 percent of the time and took up 25 percent of total newscast minutes."
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