chapter  11
Localizing Terror, Creating Fear in Post 9/11 Local TV News
Pages 13

As the war on terror continued and the focus shifted from Iraq to Afghanistan, American citizens expressed mixed feelings about it. Of course there are many opinions when it comes to the war on terror, but time has also allowed many to forget the sense of fear that existed in this country when America was under attack on September 11, 2001. There are occasional reminders in the news of why we are at war. But national and local news outlets don’t cover terrorism with the same fervor that they did immediately following the attacks in New York and Washington D.C. on September 11, 2001. Truth be told, this may not be such a bad thing. Immediately following the attacks of September 11, 2001, the media often created an unwarranted sense of urgency and fear in audiences. The coverage wasn’t always event driven. At times news outlets would ponder the “what ifs.” What if there was another attack on U.S. soil? What if terrorists were living among us? The possibilities were endless and so was the potential to create anxiety and fear in the hearts and minds of American viewers.