1. Should a newspaper be this partisan? Are they being partisan or reporting the truth here? Should a newspaper/reporter have as much influence against a person, organization?

I believe that newspapers should not be partisan.  The goal of the news is to report the whole story in my mind.  With that said, if they are only reporting one side, then in reality I am only getting part of the news and that doesn’t seem fair.  In this case, the paper was reporting a biased partisan story.  The journalist just played on the current hate trend of post 9/11 and for the sake of a good selling story, ruined a woman’s career.  What he failed to do was to ask her whether she was even part of this organization that they said she was a part of (she wasn’t even affiliated with that organization).  Instead, they focused on the negative meaning of the word based on today’s understanding and tied it to her.  I think that the reporter should have that much influence over an organization.  We have only to look at the Watergate scandal to see that it can be used for good.  Unfortunately what it boils down to is the responsibility of the reporter in terms of knowing what to publish and what not to.  They should also be prepared for the chain of events such an action would potentially set off.

2. Similar to Churchill last week, yet different, is it possible to ever give a nuanced answer to 9/11? Can you ever say anything negative about the US when it comes to it?

Unfortunately in today’s world, it is almost impossible to give a nuanced answer or opinion; especially to a topic such as 9/11.  The reason for this is that people are just so focused on one aspect, that for them any alternative or opposing idea is blasphemy.  It’s almost like the scenario where, if you were to prove that god doesn’t exist.  In that case, people would go crazy and do crazy things, because they would realize that their life and intentions now hold no meaning.  The same thing applies here, because most people who lost someone dear to them need someone to blame and vent their frustrations on.  if their ideals were to be proven wrong, then all their actions and their intentions would be tarnished and their memory of the loved one would be viewed in a negative manner as well.

3. Should someone who is a few degrees away from any organization that is negative or has a negative image be fired?

No, or at least not unless there is solid proof that the person in question has ties to the organization or extremist ideals.  In the case of Debbie Almontaser, there was no sufficient proof that she was tied to ideals of hate or the organization that was in question.  Similar to Ward Churchill, people just didn’t like her views or the school she would potentially be a part of, and in response, beat around the bush to accuse her of something remote of what they really hated her for.  I think its ignorance and paranoia for the most part that constitutes such actions and sadly today, this happens to be the biggest reason for some of these actions.

4. Who do you believe in this story? The Post or Almonstaser?

I have lost for the most part, faith in the media and press.  I think they no longer have the backbone to go after the real stories and do what they are supposed to do.  I’ve always asked why they report the same mundane and unimportant info when they should be focusing on the real stories.  With that said, i would side with Almontaser, because I believe that her intentions were pure and for the good of people.  After all, what was so bad about her heading a school that promotes cultural diffusion and helps those coming into this country to adapt to it.  Is New York not known for its vast variety of cultures and how they all live together and share one anther’s culture?  for me, the reporter lost all credibility when he twisted her words against her and did not print what she said, the way she meant it.  I think character assassination like that is the worse crime of all.  Napoleon was right when he said “Four hostile newspapers are more to be feared than a thousand bayonets.”  At least the bayonets will end your suffering, while the newspapers will forever immortalize your name with something either good or bad (bad in this case).

Advertisements