Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Editorial: Lessons in responsibility

Today the unnamed Courier editor references the attempted assassination of Rep. Gabrielle Giffords and the killings of six others last year to make a responsible point about the tenor of our public discourse that encourages the weak-minded to radicalization and violence. This vital topic has been missing from these pages till now, and hear, hear.
   But there's one important element missing. The editor writes of "a political discourse that, while considered provocative for generations before, now takes vile viral. Previously-unheard of levels of amplified propaganda spread like wildfire via the Internet and 21st century social networks. Self-editing is a thing of the past. Untrue statements become permanent public record for billions to access in minutes. Scurrilous opinions become the information superhighway's proverbial red meat for an audience looking to radicalize their (sic) own ideologies."
    Yup, the trash talk the editor despises is only on the Internet. Not in the mainstream media, not in The Daily Courier. Not his fault.
    I'll be more convinced of the editor's sincerity when I see evidence that he's vetting the weekly right-wing rent-a-columns, ranting letters and his own editorials to eliminate the lies, distortions and hate speech that fuel resentment, bigotry and intolerance. Perhaps he can then move on to assign someone to enforce his comments policy against personal attacks. There's a lot to do. Drive the snakes from your own nest first.

2 comments:

Prescott Resident said...

Twice in the last few weeks I have posted comment on the Courier that have not been published

The first in regard to Wiederaenders 11/24/2011 Friday Catchall: Polling doesn't favor Brewer; comics to change. Commenting on the Courier's comics survey he remarked that the Courier would be dropping the "bottom-feeders". I posted the following comment:

"Editor Wiederaenders,

Definition: bottom feeder 
1.
bottom fish.
2.
an opportunist, as in politics or business: bottom feeders who buy up commercial failures.
3.
a person having low status; loser; lowlife: bottom feeders hanging out in seedy bars.
4.
a person who appeals to base instincts: Gossip columnists are the bottom feeders of journalism.

Can we assume from the above definition, that your columns and the Reader Comments will be the first thing to go?"

Needless to say it wasn't published and I really didn't expect it to be.

The second comment I posted was in response to the 12/31/2011 Editorial ,Stories to watch in 2012.

My comment: "Stories we would like to see in 2012


Western News&info, inc files for bankruptcy - The Daily Courier and others to shut down operations.

Inaccurate stories, editorials and reader comments gone forever.

EDITORS: I bet you don't publish this. You are very thin skinned and have rarely published my and other's comments critical of the Courier. You let others bash and insult each other in you reader comments, violating your Terms of Use agreement almost daily. I for once would like to see you show some backbone and courage and publish the pot shot aimed at you.

You can dish it out, but you can't take it."

As stated the Courier, does not enforce their Terms of Use. Commenters are trading insults, making personal attacks on each other and mud-slinging all over the comments, but take a jab at one of the Courier's staff and rest assured you will never see that comment. I would really like Wiederaenders to show some balls and take the mud slung at him and his staff. As I said, they can dish it out, but they can't and won't take it.

Steven Ayres said...

Can't we hope for less mud in general and more useful content?