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Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Local Paper Punishes Moms With Monster Story

On Mother's Day Sunday, a day traditionally reserved for family and celebrating mom, the Janesville Gazette ran a Front page headline story on James Humphrey, the fallen local man found guilty of shooting to death another man in a chance confrontation that went disastrously out of control over an exchange of words and gestures.

A letter published in Wednesday's newspaper written by a person identifying herself as a family member of the victim found the newspaper's two-page feature very distasteful and a slap in the face of the victim's mother and the mother of the victim's children. But she went further. She also offered the notion that the guilty suspect's mother did not deserve to have this heartbreak story thrown back in her face either, not on Mother's Day and quite frankly - you don't screw around with mothers.

As a close observer of the Gazette, I find Sunday’s murder story placement a placement of choice. This was not breaking news or time sensitive information delivered for the public's urgency need-to-know. The point is, the Janesville Gazette editors knew exactly what they're doing. They deliberately used the heightened passions surrounding Mother's Day to jack up the shock and loss and teach everybody a family lesson. They believe it's their calling to play with lives and emotions if they can use it to advantage their right-wing social engineering program. In fact, this newspaper truly believes that the more critics they attract from opposing sides of an issue - the better. That's their journalistic benchmark for a balanced nirvana. The element they didn't take into consideration on Mother's Day however is the fact that the perpetrator and the victim’s mom love for their children is a common bond and it's totally unconditional. That's just one reason why they deserved much better on Mother's Day than what the Gazette dished out.

On Mother's Day 2011, the Janesville Gazette recklessly tore at the heart of every mom cuddling their precious little baby and hoping that someday, their child will make a positive difference in the world and in the lives of others. The point is, this story was scheduled for Mother's Day - no other day would do that could chug at the heartstrings the same way with the same effect the social engineers at the Gazette wanted to achieve. Ironically, they'll likely win awards in journalism excellence for their trainwreck "Man to Monster" Mother's Day story.

But it doesn't end there. The soulless Gazette and their WCLO radio barker Dan Conry, another award winning champion of free speech, trash commenters and critics alike who supposedly call into the newspaper's mind-numbingly illegitimate "Sound Off" anonymous feature. This is their monster. Conry says "bravo to the Gazette for printing cowards corner," it's a good recipe for the toxic stew they're selling. Conry then begins his circus act by reading portions of the signed letter sent in by the victim’s kin. But what exactly in the letter offends the liberty-loving free speech corporate tool the most? It's the idea that she plans on exercising her freedom of choice. She writes...

When my family moves back to Janesville, I will be sure to rethink subscribing to your newspaper!

Conry's offended most by the suggestion of withholding purchasing a subscription (boycott) and then describes exercising this free market principle as really an exercise in censorship. He then downplays the suggestion that the murder event was a "tragedy for both families" by sarcastically poking "that's nonsense - that's garbage." Okaaaay. He also plays surprise that advocates of boycotts and critics of his show are indeed "not without education" and "raised the the right way" and "well heeled" who are "professionals" and who are considered "very nice people" that have written letters to the general manager of the radio show saying "Dan Conry shouldn't be on the air." Again Conry implies that such criticism is intellectually dishonest for anyone educated and who understands the Constitution. I mean, everyone knows that boycotts or criticism of the Gazette or the Dan Conry Show doesn't fall under freedom of speech. Why that's socialistic, union thuggery communism and censorship.


Anonymous said...

Criticize the timing, but what did you think of the story? As rare as murder is in Janesville, I found it an interesting read. All the family, friends and neighbors spoke highly of Humphrey, so how this all came about was really fascinating.
Also, credit the Gazette for printing letters and comments critical of itself. How many other businesses would do the same?

Lou Kaye said...

From my perspective, the timing appears to have such a strong and underlying motive that it overwhelms the quality of its content. I also believe Lux's story was meant to work in tandem as a remedy for moms to avoid raising troubled adults. Get an education - but that's another perspective. Overall, I thought it was kind of creepy. Good stories shouldn't come at so great of an expense of other’s emotional and personal loss. At least not on Mother's Day. I don't know if it's credit the Gazette deserves for printing letters and comments critical of itself.

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