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The Media Discovers Cindy Sheehan
Berkeley Daily Planet
By BECKY O'MALLEY
Cindy Sheehan has finally managed to capture the imagination of the nation and of the world. Those of us in northern California have been aware of her campaign against the war in Iraq for more than a year. Members of Military Families Speak Out, including Cindy Sheehan, spoke at the Unitarian Universalist Church in Berkeley in July of 2004, but it’s taken a while for the national media to process their message. This has historically been the case for ideas and movements originating outside of the New York-Washington corridor.
Part of the reason her story is finally surfacing is that August is a notably slow media month. Many magazines take a week or two off at this time of year, and others (including the New York Times) are uncharacteristically thin. So timing a big media campaign for the slow season when Congress is out of session makes perfect sense. When I was a political operative in the ‘60s we used to say “never underestimate the laziness of the newsies