Today is

Wednesday, July 07, 2010

Nobody Rained On Janesville's Independence Day Celebration

This may sound odd, but only in Janesville the question to ask is "why not?"

Now that all of Janesville's Fourth of July celebrations are over, it should be plain to see how different the Janesville Gazette's article and editorial position was leading up to this year's community event compared to recent years.

Gone was the provocative and disparaging language in Gazette articles leading up to the event in previous years. Gone were the vicious editorial attacks by the newspaper designed to cripple the event and crush the spirit of its organizers and supporters. Gone were the unbecoming comments and nasty accusations from the organizers, of all people, of a religious organization running a competing Independence Day celebration. Gone were the newspaper's implications that the event's beer tent was serving kiddies. Gone were the scolding comments from Janesville city council members telling a struggling volunteer community service organization to get their financial act together.

In fact it was quite the opposite. This year, the Gazette bragged about developing ways the event's new organizer, the Rock Aqua Jays, can market the event and rally donations. And, at least one city council member practically tripped over himself to compensate the Aqua Jays $1,500 for the event from city taxpayer coffers.

I suppose it can be said that the Janesville Gazette finally approved of one of the city's service groups to organize the city's community Fourth of July celebration. From the newspaper's recent history, this comes as a welcome surprise. However, the stark contrast and indifference shown by the newspaper should not go unnoticed. Buying ink by the barrel should not entitle the Gazette to pick the winners and losers of the community's support.

Of course all of the negative publicity leveled against the previous hosts of Janesville's community Independence Day celebration came via the Janesville Gazette or their media affiliates. The newspaper's newly found supporting tone, editorial spin and full page ads for the Rock Aqua Jays hosting the community's Fourth of July celebration was in stark contrast to the newspaper's past performances against the Janesville Jaycees. This includes the flat if not complete absence of genuine support the newspaper had shown towards the local Odd Fellows chapter when they attempted the event last year. Neither group deserved what the Gazette dished out. They took on the responsibility when no one else stepped up, just like the Rock Aqua Jays.

The lesson to learn from the newspaper's suddenly latent bad attitude is to never forget that when someone with good intentions, passion and effort is obviously struggling to accomplish their goal and/or they lack the volunteers and marketing skills necessary to satisfy certain establishment players - that the best thing the editors could think of to help was - kick them when they were down.

Posted in Tuesday's Gazette is the newspaper's post-celebration article under the title, Rock Aqua Jays see success as Fourth of July event sponsor." The comments posted by Jenny57 are definitely worth reading. Click to see Bush deficits

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

If the aqua jays were really a community first organization, they would offer any event surplus they raised to the Oddfellows to help pay off their independence day debt.

Post a Comment