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What happened to responsible journalism – mini rant

I had this romantic notion of journalism.  I envisioned journalists traveling corners of the world for truth.  Verifying through extensive research and fact checking, the validity of their stories.

I picture a journalist much like an archeologist – actually, in my head, my inner-journalist is wearing an Indiana Jones outfit, sans whip, and has just landed in the nick of time to get his story to the editor at the last minute – again.   But the editor doesn’t mind – he knows the story will be good.  The story will have substance.  And he knows his journalist has sources he probably won’t disclose, but he has them – to back up his words.

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That’s the way I picture it anyway.

But it’s not really the case these days is it?  Such a shame, because some media outlets today have turned a dignified profession into an embarrasing tabloid one.

There are a couple of books I read and really enjoyed that enlightened me more on this topic – having more to do with how the press affect on-going cases in the public eye.  We now have a ‘court of public opinion’ rather than a ‘jury of our peers’ when it comes to high profile cases,  thanks to the media.

Jodi Picoult “The Pact” and Gillian Flynn “Gone Girl” touch on this powerfully.  Not everything is as it seems …

During research (yes, I do research) for a piece I wrote, I had the misfortune to read some articles by a ‘respected’ journalist that has made my blood boil.  Much to my chagrin, I keep reading it too.  But,  there are others who read the same piece that do not consider there is ‘another side.’  Or that *Shock* perhaps the journalist isn’t being entirely truthful.

I won’t mention the author or the topic – but suffice it to say, his work was peppered with his own obvious tainted feelings on his subject of choice.  It’s hard to refrain from a rebuttal, but I promised I would.  I keep my promises.

You could say that my last few paragraphs are equally guilty of being biased – but, this is my blog – stuffed full of my own opinions, I’ve certainly never claimed to be a resource for fact and news.

On the upside, I haven’t thought of Jodi Arias in a while – the media moves on and so do our thoughts.  Of course, when a new jury is selected for the penalty phase of her trial,  we’ll be inundated with her again.

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Writers Remorse

I’ve been pretty careful about skirting around some issues for the purpose of respecting people in my life – or protecting people in my life.  This has been a little frustrating, but par for the course of ‘going public’ with my blog.

Originally I wanted a spot I could write anonymously (other than my journal). A venue where I didn’t have to edit myself.  I had hoped to share and help others with some issues I haven’t addressed yet.  It is what it is though, and I do have to edit myself. 

Yesterday, after my post about my son I felt pretty rotten.  I shared my concerns with a writer friend who told me not to edit it – to stick with what my gut told me to write.

And he was right.  I wrote from my heart and from the place I was in right that second.

So consider this an amendment of sorts.

My son is kind-hearted, funny, loving, intelligent, and good.

My frustrations yesterday had to be looked at.  Examined.  Because the fact that I was having a physical reaction to something that wasn’t even intended to piss me off, definitely deserves to be contemplated.

If I have learned anything in the past few years, it’s that most emotions stem from fear.

I am scared. 

I am fearful that I haven’t done enough, taught enough, instilled enough and the clock is ticking on my sons childhood.

He will be 18 in March of next year. 

I want him to say ‘thank you’ when people do kind things for him.  I want him to see someone obviously up to their elbows in work and offer a helping hand.  I want him to be aware of his surroundings and make sensible choices.  I want my son to know and show gratitude.

I can want these things for him until I’m blue in the face – but I can’t make them so.

I have tried to teach by example.  When I missed his first step, his first laugh, a school assembly, I hoped at least he would grow up knowing the importance of hard work. Knowing that providing for your family is important. 

I’m demonstrative with my gratitude, my love, my compassion.  I want him to see those things in action and have them become a part of who he is.

I’ve never beat him, never told him he was less than and never has he gone without a meal or an article of clothing that he required. 

My son has had the best of me and my time is almost up.

He’s going to be in the worlds kitchen while it’s population is carving, cleaning, juggling tasks.  And I don’t want him behaving the way he did in mine.

I tell myself ‘God doesn’t have grandchildren’.  I also remind myself that it took me a long time before I knew half of what I know today. 

I guess it all boils down to that age-old wish.  I don’t want him to make my mistakes.

But this isn’t about me. 

I could have handled yesterday a lot better. So obviously, at 43 I still have a great deal to learn.  Why be so hard on a 17-year-old?

mute

Flooded with fantastic thoughts,

My memory can’t retain them,

my pen cannot complete them.

Fleeting revelations mend my soul,

but my mouth fails to convey them.

frustration

I’m meek,  untrained to speak them.

I have no voice.

I feel more than my sentences,

I ache to pass them on!

But just before I write them down, they’re gone.

mute

Realizations spill into my mind

my heart

my soul

then locked inside.

I speak ridiculously,

flustered

Out loud I hear someone … and it’s me,

poorly portraying me.