As I sit in that briefing room, as the little guy, I understand why the world is in such a chaotic state, with 1 percent of people controlling all the resources while the majority of people wallow in hopelessness, drug addiction, homelessness and hunger.
journalist mr. simon ateba is a hero of sorts. he created a story all about himself. in doing so, he exposed xenophobia in both the mainstream media and the biden administration
mr. ateba, the chief white house correspondent for today news africa, on the last day of white house press secretary jen psaki, decried inequity in the pressroom. he wanted to ask a question and was tired of the front row mainstream media monopolizing the press conferences. thus, he proceeded to take action.
mr. ateba spoke out relentlessly to prove a point: he asked white house press secretary jen psaki “why don’t you take questions from across the room?” not getting answer, he pressed on with his questions and talked over those present “why don’t you take questions from across the room? because that’s not what you’ve done for the past 15 months,” he asked. he then went on further and said “jen, can i ask you a question from the back?” he was so persistent that npr’s reporter, tamara keith, apparently was offended. she turned around and urged him to desist. in listening to the conference, he raised concerns of equity concerning the opportunities for journalists to ask questions. nypost.com
had this been the press conference of the former administration, a presidential candidate joe biden would have gotten his flame thrower out and decried the racism and xenophobia exhibited in the press conference. he would have reminded us that he once worked for president obama who had african ancestry and it was deplorable that an african journalist would have been treated like this. he would have condemned the administration for ignoring equity. he would have called the press secretary an “ultra” racist and “ultra” xenophobe. he likely would have called her boss the “king” racist and “king” xenophobe. since it was his administration that engaged in this display, however, mr. biden will most likely take this matter to a focus group for a pithy response.
mr. biden perhaps will take the moment to direct his flame thrower towards the mainstream media. “why can’t they share?” “why are they selfish with their time?” he could recommend that the npr journalist be rebuked for putting an african journalist down.
in all, we must congratulate mr. ateba as being a “home wrecker” to the white house. africans should be proud of their journalist’s efforts to make known that the african continent and population are deserving of recognition.
thus, there should be a “simon ateba” award for excellence in journalism. in fact, to celebrate his confrontational moment, mr. ateba should be awarded the first “simon ateba”
award for excellence in journalism. upon receiving the award, i am hopeful that he will be cooperative and open and answering questions from the press concerning this great honor.
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