I have to admit, pilots are a hypocritical lot. We spend an inordinate amount of time blaming the media for wrongly portraying the world of general aviation. Never stopping for a moment to think that perhaps the people in the media are pilots, we go into the bunker mentality pretty quickly on matters of general aviation.
It's long been my view that if the Phil Boyers (AOPA) were less interested in circling the wagons and creating an us vs. them mentality to whip up membership, and more interested in a more intelligent-less condescending approach to telling the GA story, then aviation would be more insulated from negative stories.
Suppose, for example, I were a member of the media (just suppose!) and I visited the AOPA forums to see what pilots think about general aviation, these are the adjectives I would see to describe pilots:
(On fly-ins) Crapshoot events
Snowboarders of the sky
And that was just on one forum thread.
Let the record show, that "the media" did not use a single one of those adjectives in reporting the details of an accident in Florida that spawned the discussion.