Does the News Media Go Too Far?


By Kidman J. Williams

Does the news go too far? I’ve been asked this kind of question before. I have been yelled at for reporting things that people don’t like, quoting people on things that they didn’t want out in the first place, and even pictures that some people felt were just tasteless and crude.

I had come across the forum of Cadiz, Kentucky.  I didn’t even know it was there. How was I supposed to know…I’m still new here in town. Anyway, I landed on a thread that was mad about some pictures that WKDZ themselves published to their website of a car crash that involved a child.

Now, do I think a photojournalist should take a picture of a dead child…JESUS  H. Gonzales…have you gone mad?  Of course I don’t! That is just a sick and twisted individual. Is it alright to take a shot of the scene.  There is nothing wrong with it.

From the website in the Cadiz section, a citizen that is going by the alias of FedUp went on and explained his/her point of view on the subject.

“Enough is enough people! It is time that we start boycotting the sick vultures at WKDZ. They posted pictures of a crashed vehicle in which a child died. I know it doesn’t sound like much but it is tasteless and trashy.”

FedUp went on to talk about boycotting WKDZ for the pictures and urged businesses to pull away from the radio staple. Obviously that didn’t work.  WKDZ is just fine. They are doing their jobs and their advertisers are well in place.  Don’t cry for them Argentina, because frankly, I’m pretty sure that they don’t give a damn.

The business of journalism is to tell people the truth and we know how well that can work in our personal lives. You can never please anyone with the truth.  The truth just makes you sleep on the lumpy old sofa in the basement.  You know the one…the one that smells like wet dog. She won’t even let you sleep on the nice couch in the living room.

The truth is a tricky mistress. You will never please everyone with it.  The best you can do is to just do it. Do you really think that any reporter or journalist likes taking shots like that?  It should be obvious that they don’t. Some people can stomach it, some can’t, but the news gets reported.

In the same thread a person by the handle of First Responder came on and voiced his opinion. He/She said,

“I agree they are pathetic. One of these days someone close to them will be in an accident and I hope there is a photographer there to put those pictures on the Internet. As for the one that said they were contributed by an officer that works for them I think ur wrong. Those vultures have scanners and arrive on scene before emergency personnel sometimes. My opinion is that they r trying to make a name for themselves and trying to impress the boss. I would love to break their cameras every time they arrive on a scene. It’s not just WKDZ it’s the newspapers too.”

I could be a grammar Nazi about it and discredit the whole quote for the use of r instead of using the already incredibly short word, are or the use of ur instead of simply using you’re.  They probably would have used your instead.  I digress.

Everyone has their jobs.  Everyone has to do their jobs. Some jobs are more unpleasant than others, but there are still duties that each have to follow.  The truth will set you free! Just remember that next time you say a woman has put on a couple of pounds.  You will be set very free!