Tuesday, April 17, 2007
On the level
I am not one to blog about current affairs. In this age of information overload, it seems senseless. What can I add to the world knowledge base by linking to some news article or a video of today's top story? But I have to say I have been more than overly disgusted lately with the state of journalism and how we are force fed sensationalism.
First the whole debate about whether the radio shock jock Imus should have been fired or not for insulting the Rutger's women's basketball game was a travesty. I had never even really heard of the guy much less given a hoot in hell about anything he had to say. His racist crap would have drifted away into oblivion if the press hadn't reinforced it at every turn and made sure everyone got to hear in graphic detail what idiotic mumblings he had uttered for the sake of shocking his audience. The real question was not whether he should be fired, but why he had a show in the first place.
And now the tragic shootings at Virginia Tech. How many times did each reporter have to point out the body count and how this was the new record for mass shootings in our history? It's just this kind of sensational garbage reporting that inspires other lunatics to try to beat such records. This was a tragedy. Why does the press insist on making it worse by conducting their scab picking form of journalism and obsessing about minutia. I don't need to hear interviews with local alumni who lived in the same dorm at Virginia Tech where some of the shootings took place. What purpose does that serve?
And don't get me started about Anna Nicole Smith.
It is getting so I am ashamed any more to have a degree in Journalism. It used to mean you were someone who had a thirst for presenting the truth in an objective and informative manner. It has mutated into this circus where the reporters scurry around turning over rocks to feed the masses' voyeuristic hunger for dirt and degradation.
I for one am mad as hell and I'm not going to take it any more.
Sorry, I had to go put my head out the window and scream. Hayden asked what am I going to do. Well, I'm going to boycott the stinking news programs that exploit these stories. I'm not watching Dateline or 20/20 and definitely nothing on the Fox Network. And maybe, just maybe I'll start writing letters to the networks and complain. Then I'm going to start writing the sponsors and tell them I'm not going to buy their products if they support sensationalism and sensationalistic programs.
PS: I did begin writing e-mails today. I've started with MSNBC. I asked them if they had any shame for the way they are reporting. Then I told them I won't watch any network that keeps reporting this way. I'm sure they will file it with the rest of the cranks out there. But at least I said something.