Wednesday, May 31, 2006

CBS Reporter Wounded.... And?

Kimberly Dozier is a reporter for CBS news. Most recently she was on assignment in Iraq as a correspondent for CBS news. That was, until a roadside bomb went off killing her two co-workers and wounding others. Suddenly the world is shocked and appalled at this act of violence. Well the world may not realize this so I'm going to clue them in. There's a war going on in Iraq.

I know, I know! Who'd thunk? Bet let me tell you even MORE shocking news. Usually where a war is going on, the area where that war is taking place is called a "war-zone". This "war-zone" usually includes live fire (i.e. real bullets), explosions, troop movements, missiles, and all other niceties of conflict.

So why is it that when a reporter, with no combat experience, steps into a war-zone where they don't belong in the first place and gets hurt it's called news? Did she deserve what happened to her? No, absolutely not, and neither do any of our troops who get injured in the line of duty while they fight for freedom across the globe. However, the difference is the troops belong there, the press does not.

Even when the press says that they belong there because people need to know, they still don't. There exist reporters that work for the various branches of the Armed Forces. There are also safe zones well behind combat lines (such as in Saudi Arabia or Egypt) where reporters could interview men returning from tours in Iraq to get their news. They say the public demands they go in to get footage, I say hogwash. If the major media outlets said no, the public could "demand" whatever the heck they want and it wouldn't matter, unless of course the media moguls were obsessed with scooping the other news outlets for ratings. Heaven forbid they put the welfare of their reporters or society at large before their own profit and agenda.

If the audience wants footage so bad, let them risk their own necks to get it, firsthand. Yes, I'm referring to joining up with the Army, Navy, Marines, Air Force, there are lots of options. The press are a liability, pure and simple. When a member of the press steps into a war zone, there is never/has never been a guarantee of safety, ever! You want to go over there? Fine, but you're on your own, and don't be surprised when things like this happen.

Think I'm being unfair? Ok, let me pose this query. Suppose an American reporter is kidnapped in a war-zone somewhere. Now, the press is supposed to be impartial and merely reporting facts so let's say this reporter was interviewing someone from "the other side" to get their views. Let's make it the Korean conflict. The reporter is interviewing the head honcho of North Korea. The North Koreans decide to take this person hostage as a POW. But who is responsible for this person now? If they were a "U.S. Citizen" they never would have made it to where they were. If they were a soldier, they would have been shot along the way. But under the guise of "press" they got in because they just had this urge to put themselves in a really stupid situation because they just had to get the scoop. Should more U.S. soldiers risk their lives to save this person that knew the risks ahead of time yet willingly went ahead with it anyway? I think not. If you're going to claim complete autonomy as a member of the press, then it must hold true the whole way through, not just when it's convenient.

2 comments:

BP said...

Money, dear boy. It's all about money. The network that gets the story gets the viewers, and the ad dollars. This isn't a matter of common sense. Common sense gets overridden when money is involved. I'm not telling you anything you didn't know already.

Have a good day Matt.

Lonnie

Matt said...

To quote Metallica,
"Sad But True"