Dec 15 2013

 

 

 

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Over the years, I have frowned at critiquing the media since it is such an essential and critical part of a free society. If we don't have the ability to openly dissent to governmental policies, then democracy is really in trouble. God knows, there have been times that I wanted to shake my newspaper as if it was the surrogate for the editor.

The print media is in trouble and in this fast paced technological world and they are striving to find ways to deliver their news while still making huge profits for their barons. The fact that the Murdochs with their print media empire is still holding on in this age of technological news is amazing.

The Huffington Post is now challenging the New York Post with the screaming cleaver headlines (often about nothing). The New York Post circulation is in the hundreds of thousands while Huffington Post reaches into the millions! Blogs like Towleroad.com has almost as many readers as a USA Today and deliver more substantive articles while at the same time entertaining its readers.

So with a sympatric eye to their bottom line, nevertheless their reporting and coverage surrounding the death of icon Nelson Mandela was indeed gravely disappointing. Mandela is without question the greatest man of our times and his story is almost unparalleled in history.

By the end of his ten day mourning period, you would think from reading the papers and listening to the newscasts that the biggest story to be told was a sad sick translator and a poor taste 'selfie' by the President.

Really?

Do these stories really deserved that much attention while ignoring the story of Mandela so future generations could be inspired by it? Doesn't at least the Sharpeville Massacre deserve as much attention as the 'selfie'? How about how a man who can emerge from decades in prison and embrace his jailers? A good hour of television could be devoted to the creation of one of the great national constitutions in the world and the only one that protects its LGBT citizens!

There will be none like Mandela and this was a moment to make sure young people understood his message so they can teach it to their children.

Yes, I understand the security issues surrounding the translator. It should be examined and the Secret Service should review its procedures. The media is required to point out this security lapse but if you listen to the news it was the major story from this week. Count me as old fashion and as one who found the President's 'selfie' in bad taste. After all it was a funeral for one of the world's greatest persons.

Not only will the world miss a great man but it also missed the opportunity to educate future generations about love and forgiveness. That is really sad.