Wendi Winters, Rebecca Smith, Robert Hiaasen, Gerald Fischman, John McNamara, Adam Ward, Alison Parker, Chauncey Bailey, Manuel de Dios Unanue, Dona St. Plite, Robert Stevens, William Biggart, and numerous other national and overseas news staff.
Why? Because they wanted to make sure you – yes, you – knew what was going on in the world around you.
Make no mistake. There is a difference between a real journalist and newsmongers. Unfortunately, many people today don’t know or care to make the distinction.
Without journalists, no one would know who Donald Trump is (regardless of how you voted); whether your stocks went up or down; whether North Korea was about to launch a nuclear strike; when a hurricane was about to hit; when it’s unsafe to drink your water; that your neighbor’s enlisted daughter with two kids was killed in an overseas ambush; your baby’s food or car seat was recalled; your doctor is being sued for malpractice.
The list is endless.
True journalists deal in facts. We are human, so sometimes — despite all the things we’re taught in journalism and ethics class about not using provocative language and remaining unbiased — we have feelings. A good journalist may detest the subject matter about which she or he writes, but we write it anyway. Pro-choice but assigned a pro-life article? Stifle our feelings and write it. Trump supporter but have to do an article on Hilary Clinton? Do it. And do it well. Then go home and punch a pillow or complain to your pet.
Sometimes we write about things with which some readers may disagree. And sometimes we write them with fear in our hearts. We print our bylines. You can openly and viciously criticize us, and if we choose to fight back, we have to do so in a courteous manner – without telling the unkind how much the words hurt. There’s no more arguing over a pint at the local pub; no more mediation centers with a counselor; no more “OK, so be it.” With so much personal information accessible nowadays, it’s like putting targets on our backs.
We are doing our jobs so the public knows what is going on outside of their personal bubbles. If you don’t agree with us, “so be it.”
Just let us do our jobs.
Let us live.