May 06, 2008
Newspapers Last Stand, Onion Says
The Onion reports that newspapers, breathing their last breath, can still cover something important: the story of newspapers breathing their last breath. READ ALL ABOUT IT.
As a reporter, blogger, and fan, it's distressing, of course, not only to see the industry under such fire from outside, but to be employing such mediocre management inside.
After reading two days of Kentucky Derby coverage, I'm particularly bothered. Not one of the 13 papers I checked, reported anything but that Eight Belles--the Kentucky filly that was shot in the head on the Derby track Saturday-- was "euthanized."
I even heard people who heard the term assume that the horse was given a painless lethal injection.
Sorry. In trying to make everything safe and inoffensive, our publications have become spineless. None told it how it was. And many, including the New York Times, lambasted NBC for being too slow to report what happened to the horse in its live coverage.
As if that vindicated the print media, being a bit less lame than the broadcast counterpart?
The truth is, the shooting of a horse like that, which would bring charges of animal cruelty if anyone else did it, should open a broad debate on the cruelty of horse racing.
How is it that Michael Vick gets sentenced to years in jail for dog fighting, but these horse murderers walk scot free?
A horse that can be treated off the field and have its legs fixed, won't bring the insurance dollars of one that dies during a race.
In Europe, horses aren't allowed to race until they are three, and their legs are fully developed. Here it is 18 months, and you see what can happen.
These are some of the questions people should be asking today, but with "euthanized" journalism, the real issues never come up.
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