Paul Revere by Cyrus Dallin, North End, Boston
Saturday, February 25, 2017
"Otherwise, We Are Lost"
The following was written by author, journalist, Yvonne Daley, a woman I'm honored to call friend, since high school.
"Let it roll in -- you who studied journalism, you who grew up on papers and radio news, you who watched a president killed on national tv, shout it out, that we are capable of making decisions and knowing bullshit when we read it. You whose game stories were in the paper and your kid's award, and the selectmen's meeting or the US Senate and they got it all right or they got it all wrong, maybe you wrote a letter to the editor, maybe you wrote to the reporter, maybe you just griped or stopped believing. But think of the times the press uncovered wrong, or told a story that needed to be told, or helped people find common ground -- too rare. Yet it happened and you remember those stories, don't you? The ones that changed your mind or opened your heart. Let it roll in -- your more-rounded, fuller, less brainwashed version of the news. You love that 24-hour news cycle, don't you? It is a pollution that causes errors. But you wanted it and the press gave up some caution to give it. Will we pull back time?
Still, it's what we have. It's the journal of a town, a city, a people, a government. It's a version and the more versions the better. The problem is not that there's too many news services; it's that people have to be thoughtful consumers.
Journalism is written by imperfect humans, most of them doing their best, even those with bias. There are editors and fact-checkers and they are human too. But you have nothing better. Do you believe in the deconstruction of your government? Do you know the outcome of that. The word is chaos.
It is not the government's job to censor the press any more than it is the press's job to be the president's cheerleader. So, let it roll in, the outrage. Regardless of which side of the divide you're on, speak your outrage that silencing the press is not democracy, that the First Amendment matters. Proclaim it. A movement will come out of this. If a free press and your right to information from all sorts of sources, uncensored, unthreatened, is threatened, you must resist.
Otherwise, we are lost."