Perhaps I wouldn’t recognize news if it walked up to me on the street and whacked me in the butt with a two-by-four. Perhaps my understanding of what it is to be a “reporter” differs too greatly from the norm. And maybe I’m just disgusted at what gets reported and what passes for “news” these days.
Some idiot with a 50-person congregation in Florida says he’s going to burn a bunch of copies of the Koran (Qur’an, if you prefer) tomorrow, on the 9th anniversary of the 9-11 attacks (“nine-year anniversary”, as too many semi-literate news announcers will say). This is news? National news? Lead-story, top headline NATIONAL news? Now, he’s decided to back off - or, maybe not. He's waffling.
This whole story is two lines on some blog in Gainesville, Florida, as far as I’m concerned. Where is the judgment of these "news organizations"?
Once the Secretary of State of the United States got drawn into the controversy, and heads of foreign nations joined the fray, it was news, all right. And the only reason it got to that point, if you ask me, is because the people who decide what news is have no real compass about this stuff.
I fully expect my many friends in the media to push back at me on this. But to me, it’s like that horrible excuse for a human being at some tiny “church” in Kansas who leads his moronic band of sycophants to funerals of soldiers killed in action, and parades around with gay-hate signs. Giving people like this the kind of national media exposure they get is just as sick as the stunts they’re pulling.
Does the cleric in Gainesville have a right to burn the Koran? Absolutely, just as I have a right to loudly belch or fart in the middle of a meal at a nice restaurant. Only a person with a pathological need for attention would do so, though. And that’s what these bible-thumpers are: pathological persons.
But in the news game today, it’s most definitely monkey see, monkey do. If NBC picks it up, ABC, NBC, Fox, et.al. HAVE to run it, lest the (nonexistent) “comparative news sampler” think they missed the story. It has nothing to do with judgment; it has everything to do with mindless, blind “competition”, and it’s all internally driven.
Some whack-job at a tiny “church” in Florida threatens to burn the Koran and this becomes the number-one national news story in America? And continues to lead the news cycle when he backs down? And then waffles?
How sick we are.