Republican presidential candidate Ben Carson said Tuesday in a podcast interview with conservative radio commentator Mike Gallagher the media has "manipulated" black Americans. He said that the media’s polarization has worked to control how different demographics think politically in recent years. Carson also said he believes black voters are tired of the media telling them what to think and say.
“American blacks over the course of this next year will begin to see that they’ve been manipulated, very, very largely,” Carson said during the interview. “More and more, I'm finding, are thinking for themselves and are recognizing what really works for them and for their communities. I believe that is a dynamic that is in the process of changing.”
This is not the first time Carson has lashed out at the media for what he sees as it twisting a narrative to fit its own goals. After the presidential candidate faced outrage over his comments that he would not support a Muslim candidate for president, Carson blamed “politically correct culture” in the media for the backlash.
Gallagher asked Carson about that incident, citing a YouGov poll that showed 57 percent of Americans overall agreed with Carson’s views on a Muslim president, but 74 percent of black voters disagreed. Carson replied that the media “[takes] advantage of low-information individuals and people who won’t investigate things for themselves.”
He said the press was not meant to have partisan leanings and lamented the way media has changed since the beginning of American history. “I long for the day when the media begins to understand that the reason that they’re the only business protected by the Constitution is because it was intended that they were on the side of the people,” Carson said. “You should be able to trust them.”
When Gallagher brought up the Black Lives Matter social justice movement, Carson said he thinks race relations should be a big priority for the next president.
“One of the major things that is threatening our nation right now is divisiveness on all levels: gender, race, income, age, religion, they’re driving wedges between the people,” Carson said. “We need a commander in chief who understands that and tries to promote our unity and not our divisions.”