Why do Americans distrust the media?

The CNBC hosted GOP debate, held on Oct. 28, has sparked questions about media bias and about the alleged equity of journalism. Debate moderators Carl Quintanilla, Becky Quick and John Harwood of CNBC, have come under fire for how they treated the 10 GOP candidates.

The Republican National Committee pulled out of plans to partner with NBC for a debate in February following the debate at the end of last month.

According to RNC Chairman Reince Priebus, “CNBC’s moderators engaged in a series of ‘gotcha’ questions, petty and mean-spirited in tone, and designed to embarrass our candidates.”

The night was filled with jabs and insults. Harwood accused Trump of running a “comic-book campaign,” and Quick discredited Carson’s flat-tax plan, saying that the numbers just didn’t add up.

Senator Ted Cruz even called out the moderators for their subjective questions and unprofessional behavior.

“The questions that have been asked so far in this debate illustrate why the American people don’t trust the media,” he said. “This is not a cage match…The questions shouldn’t be getting people to tear into each other.”

CNBC has defended its debate questions, saying that the GOP candidates should be able to respond to tough questions.

President Obama chimed in and defended CNBC by saying, “And then it turns out, they can’t handle a bunch of CNBC moderators,” he said. “If you can’t handle those guys, I don’t think the Chinese and the Russians aren’t going to be too worried about you.”

Some have criticized CNBC for hosting the debate only as a way to up their profits and views.

The Ring-tum Phi staff believes that the media’s sole responsibility is to serve the American people by presenting news that isn’t colored with a journalist’s, or their network’s, point of view. When media outlets seek to further their own interests, their journalistic credibility is compromised.

Americans turn to the media as their primary source of information. Certain ethical journalistic practices should be adhered to in order to present the American public with unbiased news. A fair and equal representation of all sides in news reporting is especially important with regards to elections and debates.

Trust in the media is at an all-time low. Recent polls have shown that only 40 percent of Americans have a “great deal” of confidence in the objectivity of the media. Even though many Americans are skeptical of the news media, where else can they turn for information?