(/sites/default/files/uploads/2013/08/LawOrder-SVU-logo.jpg)According to Entertainment Weekly, the hit show “Law & Order: SVU” is scheduled to spend the third episode of its 15th season mashing up the case of celebrity chef Paula Deen and that of teenager Trayvon Martin. Deen, who lost a huge chunk of her career after admitting in a legal deposition that she had once used the n-word, will be portrayed by Cybill Shephard as a fearful white woman who turns to face a young black teenager – presumably a Trayvon lookalike – and shoots him dead. ABC News reports, “The episode will touch on racial profiling, self-defense and how the two mix, if ever.” Executive producer Warren Leight told Entertainment Weekly that the script split the cast. “It was really interesting to see people read that script and have different interpretations about who did what and whether or not they deserved prison for it,” he stated.
This is how Hollywood now works. The news half of entertainment conglomerates creates a story out of nothing; the entertainment half then makes money off of it.
The Trayvon Martin story was a fairly simple one until the leftist media got hold of it. It was the story of a Hispanic man concerned about crime in his neighborhood – particularly crime committed by young black men, who had disproportionately committed such crime in his community – following a young black man, getting into an altercation with that young black man, being beaten up by that young black man, and shooting that young black man in the chest. The mainstream media then turned the story into that of a white racist viciously following and shooting an innocent young black man. To do so, they lied repeatedly – NBC News edited the call in order make Zimmerman sound racist, CNN suggested that Zimmerman used a racial slur, and multiple outlets claimed Zimmerman had not been wounded. Then when the Department of Justice and FBI could find no evidence that Zimmerman was a racist, the left continued to promulgate that narrative.
The same was true of Paula Deen. Deen used a nasty slur several decades ago after being held up by a black man. She admitted it in a deposition in a lawsuit filed by one of her employees for racial discrimination. That lawsuit was dismissed in full. “While this has been a difficult time for both my family and myself, I am pleased that the judge dismissed the race claims and I am looking forward to getting this behind me, now that the remaining claims have been resolved,” Deen said in a statement. But the media had concluded that she was, at the very least, somewhat racist.
Now the networks will make money off these two largely manufactured stories. Weaving together a plotline about a famous white racist and an innocent black teenager victimized by profiling – and presumably ignoring the violent incident that preceded the shooting of Trayvon Martin – NBC will put forth the picture of a racist America. That’s good narrative, and it’s good business, as Oprah is showing with the tremendous success of The Butler.
Hollywood is now banking on the merger between news and entertainment. 20th Century Fox has now made a two-year first-look pact with Epic, an online platform looking to create “film-centric investigative longform journalism.” Create news stories, make them into film, create profit. Fact becomes fiction – or rather, fact gets twisted into quasi-fact which then becomes a “based on the true story.”
Americans should now take the stories pushed by the media with a large grain of salt. It isn’t enough for Hollywood to twist the truth. Hollywood’s other hand, the news media, will create its own truth for Hollywood to twist.
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