Journal-Times (Grayson, KY)

Wednesday's Post

January 18, 2012

Beating up the messenger never goes out of style

Jan. 18, 2012 —     Last week’s mail brought us a scathing letter from a highly respected person who took us to the woodshed over the recent content of our newspaper.

    He roundly criticized us for the epidemic of crime stories which have dominated our front pages for weeks, including the holidays.

    Why, he asked, couldn’t we find space in each issue for one or two “good” news stories that didn’t contain words like rape, sex, assault, indicted, and stealing.

    He even listed some “feel good” stories that we might have covered.

    We agree that a soldier coming home to spend Christmas with his family or a holiday surprise for those less fortunate is always a welcome relief from what seems like the weekly chronicle of crime.

    Actually, those issues did have some positive stories but most were on inside pages. Good news often is harder to find than the ugly things people do to each other.

    Despite the occasional criticism about content, I’m proud to report that our print and online readership have steadily expanded over the last year or so.

    We believe that is happening because we are providing a professional looking, well written newspaper that reports the facts without fear or favoritism.

    Our critic from last week is a public person whom we respect and whose approval we would like to have.

    But now he appears to have joined those who want to beat up the messenger for bringing the bad news.

    The standard response among journalists to those who criticize news content is to remind everyone that we don’t make the news, we just report it.

    That may seem flippant but it is actually what happens, particularly at community newspapers like ours which don’t have reporters dedicated to investigative or sensational stories.

    In fact, the economic pressures on our industry are so intense that we are fortunate to have enough folks to cover the most important events and activities that affect the lives of the majority of our citizens.

    Like it or not, we live in violent times. The drug culture threatens to overwhelm us with lawlessness. The bad economy also has created more criminals.

    Amid this chaos, we believe our readers need and want to know what is happening around them.

    And, as long as we can keep our heads above the muck and mire, we’ll keep reporting the news as it happens, not as we might wish it to be.

1
Text Only
Wednesday's Post
  • ‘Who’s gonna fill their shoes’ a key question

    That question was the title of a great country song released in 1985 by the legendary George Jones. That scenario also applies today to the communities we call home and our local organizations that make life better for all of us.

    July 23, 2014

  • When neighbors were really neighbors…

    Lately I’ve been remembering why I’m glad I grew up in a small town where neighbors were really neighbors, not just someone who lived next door or across the road.

    July 16, 2014

  • I don’t have a pet animal but I do have pets

    After a lifetime of listening to friends and co-workers talk incessantly about their pets, I have decided to share some words about mine…my pet peeves.

    July 9, 2014

  • I make no apologies for loving my country

    Friday is the birthday of the United States of America. As an American, I’m incredibly proud of that fact.

    July 2, 2014

  • Can’t everyone grow their own vegetables?

    The sight of home vegetable gardens brings to mind a gardening adventure worth sharing. My friend and I heard someone say at church that growing your own vegetables could save money while providing your family with better, fresher food.

    June 25, 2014

  • ‘Let’s go fly a kite’ is more than a song title

    Are you concerned that too many kids today are preoccupied with handheld electronic devices and don’t know how to play outdoors? I, too, shared those feelings until a recent visit to the seashore with my grandchildren.

    June 18, 2014

  • Old ways, old days sometimes look better

    Dr. Jack Ellis, Morehead’s senior resident historian and a dear friend, sent me a copy of a clipping from the Jan. 24, 1935, issue of the Rowan County News, now called The Morehead News. “Woman fined in county court for gossiping” is the headline.

    June 11, 2014

  • Where do we find such men…and women?

    The tiny American flags fluttered in the breeze of a beautiful day. The hillside cemetery outside Grayson seemed to be covered with them like spring flowers. Again, I was awestruck by the sight of so many red, white and blue symbols of personal courage and patriotism.

    June 4, 2014

  • The ups and downs of a political journey

    In the spirit of this political season, I am recounting the tale of an affable chap who loved politics but found the winner’s circle only once.

    May 28, 2014

  • Boys of summer bring good memories

    May 21, 2014

Poll