Raven-Symone: The saga continues


To follow up my earlier blog regarding the coverage of of Raven-Symone and the series of unfortunate events that came with it.

Raven Symone has struck a chord with us all — again, but this time it’s not without serious consequences. After her statement on the young girl in South Carolina that got brutally assaulted by a police offer, which blamed the young girl for being “on her phone” during class, there has been a petition to remove Raven Symone from “The View.”

The Washington Times, Huffington Post, NBC, as well as many other news outlets, have since reported on the petition, on Change.org that addresses the petition to Barbara Walters, that says:

“Raven Symone has been spouting her ignorant and self hating spiel on the view for long enough, from stating that she wouldn’t hire somebody for having a ghetto name, to openly complaining about reverse racism, the final straw was her comment about the recent viral video of the school police officer assaulting the student, where Raven Symone said “get off your phone in school then.” African Americans and black people around the diaspora need a voice representative of their views and not a voice representative of what white people want us to say. We need strong black role models in prominent positions on television an Raven Symone cannot provide that. That is why I ask that we petition to remove her from The View.”

The news media coverage has played a major role in the success of this petition, which currently has 106,185 out of the 150,000 signature goal. The coverage of issues, such as these, and the persistent conversations on social media outlets can finally put an end to the disaster that is Raven-Symone.

Where did the news go?


Access to news has increased significantly worldwide as new, high technology devices and social media became the main platform for news dissemination. Not only is it a current and immediate news outlet, it allows its users to become aware of the latest global events in a matter of seconds.

However, does all of this speed live up the the news’ worth?

As The New York Times posted in its latest Opinion section, the news media are sliding toward thinner coverage and ever-shorter “news-nuggets” of information. Despite the increase in number and variety of news platforms, all of them are characterized by small and impacting headlines that try to summarize the latest news in a few words — that is, as long as it fits on one’s phone screen.

Sadly to newspapers and to those passionate about journalism and the beauty of unveiling the truth, news, in the 21st century, is being summed up to 10 word tweets and quick Facebook posts.

Development and growth depends on informed, critical individuals who seek information and aren’t “in a rush” to scroll down to the next post. Knowledge comes from content, however how can it prevail if the interests have shifted and news is being trimmed to devote more time and space to pop culture, celebrity gossip, and the latest trends?

Maybe what we know as “news” is changing. Maybe its time to re-define our roles as journalists, or at least, time to figure out a new place where the role of “informants” truly meets people’s needs. Whatever it is, where did news go?

Wake injury leaves Miami fans empty


Cameron Wake is an NFL success story.

After playing his college ball at Penn State, he was overlooked by every team in the NFL. Going undrafted, he decided to continue pursuing his athletic career in the Canadian Football League, always hoping to one-day break in to the NFL.

In 2009, the Dolphins finally gave him a chance and he took full advantage. According NFL statistics, Cam racked up five and a half sacks his rookie season, solidifying his position on the team. Cameron Wake had finally made it to the NFL.

Now in his seventh season with Miami, Wake is a part of the most talented Dolphins team in the last decade. But on Thursday night, when the eyes of the nation were tuned in to watch the Dolphins play the Patriots, Cameron Wake tore his Achilles.

As a 33-year-old speed rusher, the injury is devastating to Cameron Wake as well as the Dolphins. Cameron Wake’s most important physical asset is his speed. After tearing his Achilles and having to sit out the rest of the year, a sad thought creeps into the minds of Dolphins fans everywhere: Have we already seen Wake’s last sack celebration?

The media are playing the injury off as just another unfortunate consequence of playing such a violent game, discussing the injury as a season-ending one and not a potential career ender. It is hard for the national media to understand what an impact Wake has had on the Dolphins and the ray of hope, albeit fairly dim, that he has provided fans with, that maybe things will start to turn around.

As Wake was helped off the field in last night’s 36-7 beating the Dolphins suffered at the hands of the Patriots, as Tom Brady celebrated with teammates over another dominant performance, as the commentators discussed whether or not Brady could play another 10 years, a familiar feeling came over me — a feeling that only lifelong Dolphins fans could understand.

To inappropriately quote the late President Gerald Ford, “The light has gone out of my life.”

The power of Starbucks


Today was a very strange day for me. Right after leaving class, I was angry, frustrated and anxious. I had dropped my phone and somehow I ended up in Starbucks. I was waiting for my phone to be fixed, so I started looking at news for this blog post.

Suddenly, a man starts talking about the Syrian situation in Europe. He kept repeating how America is letting Syrians down just like it did to the Jews during World War II. Unbelievably, people started to jump in the conversation.  I never seen anything like this before.

It was amazing to see and hear everyone’s opinion about a delicate topic especially when all you are trying to do is just drink coffee.

I thought the conversation was going to end soon, when a passionate Syrian man started to show pictures of his family, migrants waiting for something to happen in Europe.  I couldn’t get a closer look to his camera because, honestly, I wanted to leave the moment more than half of the people inside got in it.

It was like seeing a news report, someone even started to record it along with his face for Snapshat saying “People at Starbucks talking about Syrians, what you only see on South Beach.”

The point of this blog is to show that you can get news everywhere, about anything.

I was just going to Starbucks to sit and wait for my phone and I ended up watching a debate about immigration and the crisis in the Middle East.

Chaotic GOP debate causes concern


This past Wednesday night, I gathered with a group of students inside the faculty master apartment at Mahoney Residential College to watch the Republican presidential candidates debate.

Personally, I had several expectations for the debate based off of the previous Republican debate hosted by Fox. However, what myself and millions of people watched Wednesday night, was truly unexpected.

First off, there were 10 candidates on the stage. With so many candidates, it is hard to keep track of everyone’s stance on serious matters, such as reforming the tax code, to less relevant issues, such as the regulation of fantasy sports gambling.

But, what further complicated the already difficult matter of keeping track of all of the candidates’ viewpoints were the moderators. It became apparent very quickly that the moderators were not in control of the debate as candidates not only cut each other off, but also interrupted, talked over and even challenged the moderators.

The debate was two hours of utter chaos and the Republican candidates are not happy about it. Their discontent has been broadcast and shared on various networks and social media sites, with new reports of the candidates coming together to protest the RNC and demand control over who moderates the upcoming debates as well as what questions are asked.

While I understand, that the candidates are upset, I think it would not be a true or fair debate if candidates had the ability to control virtually all aspects of the debate. While Ben Carson believes that debates should not be a game of “gotcha” questions, I disagree. Yes, a debate’s main purpose is to allow candidates to share and explain their platform on several issues and policies affecting the country, but it is also an opportunity for their ideals to be tested and challenged in front of the public.

A debate should not be a time where candidates walk on stage and present their ideals unchallenged and unquestioned–that is the whole point of a debate. While I agree with the candidates that Wednesday’s debate was chaotic, it should not serve as the catalyst to grant candidates full reign over all aspects of a debate.

Myanmar elections and social media


An opposition candidate in Myanmar is recovering after being attacked by men at a campaign rally.

The National League for Democracy (NLD) candidate Naing Ngan Lin was rushed to hospital with head and hand injuries from wielding knives and swords, but the party said his life was not in danger.

The Myanmar government rules its nation through authoritative practices. Since the late eighties, many Myanmar citizens have expressed extreme distaste in the violence and censorship of media.

Myanmar has fallen behind the rest of the world with new technology. The government, however, refuses to adapt to technology since it maintains a stronghold on all information relevant to the elections.

Cell phones and social media have recently become somewhat accessible for wealthy citizens of Myanmar. This allows for virtual communication among individuals, universities, governments and everything in-between.

Mobile phones pose a risk to the Myanmar government during election time because the government will lose authoritative control over content posted.

The upcoming election has the potential to drastically change Myanmar’s participation socially, politically and economically in modern-day society. If Myanmar citizens use social media, other countries will pay closer attention to what the people want.

I plan on closely following the election coverage from Myanmar from news outlets, but more importantly, social media.

Joe Biden and CBS’ ’60 Minutes’


Vice President Joe Biden made an announcement last week that he will not seek the 2016 nomination of the Democratic Party for president. Although it ended the subject about whether he will step back or not, the speculation of the reason came as follow.

On Sunday, Vice President Biden and his wife, Dr. Jill Biden, appeared on CBS “60 Minutes,” telling about the reason he decided not to seek the nomination: the impact of the loss of his son, Beau, and his views on Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump.

The vice president said in the interview that he knew he couldn’t win because he thought he and his staff couldn’t put together the campaign that their supporters deserved and contributors deserved. He also explained the reason — “the single most important thing in deciding not to run” is the loss of his son, Beau. The loss overturned the schedules.

Beau Biden supported Joe Biden to run for the president and thought he could win, while Maureen Dowd in The New York Times wrote about it and described Beau on his death bed said to his father, ”Dad, you’ve got to run.” This description was proved false in the interview.

Biden also discussed his comments reported by The New York Times last week that he didn’t mean to aim at Hillary Clinton herself and that they are friends.

“Go back and find anybody who says, for the four years we worked together, Hillary and I weren’t friends,” Biden said.

Moreover, Biden addressed his disappointment with Donald Trump directly and called him a showman. He wanted Trump to reconsider his remarks on immigrants.

CNN, NBC, The New York Times and many mainstream media covered this interview and they put particular emphasis on a different aspect of the story. CNN mostly covered “no Hollywood Moment” and the headline from NBC referred to Biden’s comment that he couldn’t win. The New York Times, which was mentioned twice in the interview, tells more about his family concerns. However, none of them made a comment about Biden’s disappointment with Trump.

Firing of Miami football coach Al Golden


This past weekend and leading into the current week was filled with heated discussion on University of Miami’s biggest football loss in school history and the coach behind the team.

This past weekend University of Miami football team played Clemson University where it lost an by astounding 58-0. Throughout the web and all over social media, fans across the country were posting hate posts about al golden with the #AlGolden.

Numerous fans posted that he needed to be fired and how it was the worst game that has ever occurred in the school’s history. Every news publication from ESPN to Miami news organizations to USA Today immediately wrote articles on the game and the buzz on whether or not Al Golden will be fired.

ESPN’s Snapchat even did an article on the huge loss. On Sunday, Oct. 25, the news broke that Al Golden was officially fired as University of Miami’s head football coach. News stories leading that news discussed not only the story behind the firing but also more interestingly who would replace him. Numerous headlines such as “Top 12 candidates” and “Who’s next for Miami with Al Golden gone” graced websites. This story has been a major news report in not only local but also national sports news this week.

It should be interesting to see how the story progresses moving forward and how organizations will cover the news on the search for a new coach.

Lego versus Ai Weiwei


Artist Ai Weiwei accused Lego of “censorship and discrimination” because the latter refused to sell its bricks to him because his new artistic work may convey a political statement.

According to Ai, Lego rejected Ai’s bulk order of bricks, saying that its bricks could not be used for any artworks that may of “any political, religious, racist, obscene or defaming statements.”

In response to Lego’s refusal, many fans and artists demonstrate their supports for Ai. Many of them donated their bricks to Ai, hoping that their donations could adding the amount of bricks to the degree that Ai can accomplish his Melbourne show. Some people also expressed their opinions on their social website such as Instagram or Twitter. One used Lego’s toy bricks to spell out the word “I support Ai Weiwei” and added a cutline that “we won’t be buying anymore.”

Ai wrote on his Instagram that “Lego will tell us what to do, or not to do. That is awesome!” to make an irony here because Lego has a slogan “everything is awesome”.

Ai was an artist known for his fierce criticism of Chinese government. Last year, Ai used Lego bricks in his art show at the former Alcatraz prison, near San Francisco, to create portraits of 175 dissidents who had been jailed or exiled, from Nelson Mandela to Edward Snowden. He intended to hold a similar art display in Melbourne.

Ai has changed the theme of his upcoming artistic show to defend freedom of speech and “political art,” due to Lego’s rejection of selling its bricks.

From where I stand, I consider that Lego’s behavior is for the sake of its future cooperation with the Chinese government. Lego plans to build a new Legoland in Shanghai. For Lego, building a theme park is apparently more profitable than selling bricks to an artist. Given that Chinese government is not welcoming Ai, Lego would absolutely not offend and annoy its future cooperator, Chinese government, by selling Ai bricks and indirectly assist Ai to demonstrate unpleasant arts to Chinese government.

Essentially, it is another story about people who stand on the tip pyramid of money and power win the game, or rather, make the rule.

His iPhone is on fire (literally)


Phillip Lechter says his iPhone 6 bent so much in his pocket that it punctured the battery, which can cause a fire. Lecture said that he was with his family riding on a rickshaw (pedicab) when the pedicab hit a trolley track in the road. Lechter said the impact caused him to hit the side of the metal rickshaw. He said his iPhone 6 was in his front pocket on the same side he hit the wall with. His iPhone bent in a 90 degree position, which had to puncture the battery and made it catch on fire.

Lechter said he noticed that his leg was on fire. He said someone jumped into action and threw a cup of water on his leg to put out the fire. Once the fire was out, he was able to get his phone out of his pocket and throw it out of the cab without burning himself, though he said he said he was left behind with burn on his leg.

The burn was described as an 11.5 cm x 10.5 cm burn area on his right leg and the burn was classified as second-degree with first-degree burns surrounding the area.

Lechter’s blog can be read at https://philliplechter.wordpress.com/2014/10/14/my-apple-iphone-6-bent-and-caught-on-fire-in-my-front-pocket/

58-0: Coach, what have you done?


The University of Miami football team is known for its games, players and big wins. However, everything changed this past Saturday when UM lost 58-0 at home against Clemson. This was not just a regular loss, but probably the most embarrassing in the history of the university.

What happened Canes? What happened Coach Al Golden?

Yes we get it that you are human and make mistakes, but don’t coaches get paid millions to  lead their teams to wins and winning seasons?

It’s okay Golden, we are not judging you as a human, but we sure are judging you as a coach. No, we will not let quarterback Brad Kaaya take all the heavy fault after suffering a head injury in the second quarter, just you, Coach Golden, #getwellKaaya.

Let’s not even mention the pushing during, before and after the game, it says a lot about the U, and the fans’ tweets and comments all over social media don’t help. Don’t believe me?

Check out the words from Clemson Coach Dabo Swinney, all over the Internet. Sigh. So the question is what is next? Are we keeping Al Golden? What are we doing to our players? I guess we will have to wait and see. Oh no, don’t pay attention to the planes and banners with the hashtage #FIREALGOLDEN in the sky, they are just very passionate fans who were ridiculously sad after Miami’s worst loss in the history of the program. And with that, all I can say as a proud cane is #itsallbecauseofGolden.


First gay rugby team turns 20


There has always been the idea of hyper masculinity in contact sports, such as football and rugby. The first rugby team originated from England in the first half of the 19th century and was composed of all men and now, the first gay rugby team celebrates its 20th year as an organization and discusses the homophobia they’ve experienced.

CNN reports that the fear of contracting AIDS in the 1990s was a limitation on the all-gay team playing non-gay teams, since AIDS was often associated with death.

According to CNN, Mark Bithell, the capital of the rugby team, says that the fear of contracting AIDS and homophobia limited who they played with.

“A lot of teams just didn’t want to play us,” he recalls. “And you can never be sure why they declined.

“But I certainly experienced it as a player in particular when there was a blood injury. They would react in a completely hysterical way and start screaming ‘Blood! Blood!’ and screaming at the referee to get us off the pitch because they were afraid.”

But now, with a more informed society, we praise teams such as this one, who are brave and proud enough to organize as a team, regardless of their individual sexual orientation.

The weight on students’ shoulders


As students progress through school, a common complaint is that of the weight on their shoulders- both physically and metaphorically. School can be very difficult, but so is carrying a 15-pound book bag.

CNN recently published a health article about students from elementary to high school and the weight of their backpacks causing back problems and pain.

CNN asked students in Atlanta to open their book bags, revealing books, folders, binders, pens and pencils, gym clothes, and other items that are not always used, but there for “emergencies,” such as a flashlight.

Not every book bag was overtly heavy, but some were obscenely overweight. Such is the book bag of Allie Jeffay, an 11th grader, whose backpack weighs 23.5 pounds. However, heavy backpacks are not strictly tied to high schoolers, as one fourth-grader, Jaia Alli, carries an 11 pound book bag on the daily basis. The astounding weights hold students back, as they complain about headaches, shoulder aches and back pain. A doctor quoted in the article recommends that a book bag be no more than 10 percent of a child’s weight in order to avoid back pain.

The media holds a strong voice in public health awareness. Not only does the article provide real examples from actual students, but it also teaches the reader how to properly pack a backpack with the heaviest item against one’s back to avoid strain, and which one to buy to prevent back problems like one with fully padded back and shoulder straps to cushion the weight. With the actual weights and contents of children’s backpacks and their commentary, the support is relative enough to illicit parental action, or for schools to allow for more locker accessibility.

The bottom line is that children are suffering from an issue that many often overlook. With this article, CNN shared multiple children’s perspectives about a daily issue that their parents might otherwise not have known, thus helping children from unnecessary suffering and providing a solution.

What do we know about Bin Laden?


This week’s New York Times Magazine caused quite a stir among renown contemporary journalists. Jonathan Mahler’s cover “What do we really know about Osama Bin Laden” raised many questions about the circumstances involved in bin Laden’s death and the veracity of the “stories” told at that time by the CIA and the American Government.

In Mahler’s story, not only did he retell the story of bin Laden’s death from a different perspective, he also added Seymour Hersh’s point of view on what truly happened.

Mahler begins his article by narrating the series of events that took place at the The White House the day Obama announced bin Laden’s death. Within the first few paragraphs of his article, Mahler boldly contradicted the story told by the CIA regarding bin Laden’s whereabouts and addressed the story told by the White House as “another example of American mythmaking.”

“It’s not that the truth about bin Laden’s death is unknowable,” stated Mahler. “It’s that we don’t know it. We don’t know what happened more than a half-century ago, much less in 2011.”

According to Mahler, the CIA’s years of painstaking intelligence-gathering to find bin Laden’s hideaway was only a polished and flattering version of the truth. Based on Hersh’s previous publications mentioned in Mahler’s article, bin Laden’s location was revealed by a retired member of the Pakistani intelligence who received a $25 million reward for the information. Thus, in Mahler’s view, bin Laden was never actually “hiding,” and the false story told by the media successfully fooled the majority of not only Americans but anyone around the world who followed this noteworthy “event.”

Minutes after the article’s publication, journalists from The Washington Post, The Times and other newspapers fired up social media with criticism and their opinion about this controversial cover story.

While The Times‘ national security reporter Eric Schmitt believed the article “struck a nerve among national security and foreign policy reporters like a few he saw in his three-plus decades at the paper,” others like Jim O’Donnell of Tempe stated that “its the strangest article (he) has ever read in The Times; an extreme case of the story that asserts a wholly indefensible proposition by covering the heck out of a marginalized figure.”

Whether factually, morally or socially accurate, The New York Times must have had substantial reason and motive to bring back to life such delicate issue and to approach it with a rather radical and “conspiracy-based” theory that would naturally cause controversy.

As a matter of fact I believe The Times boldly refuted conformities and proved independence from any sort of institutional and/or governmental control through this article – an aspect of journalism that has been greatly questioned and debated in the 20th century.

Another campus shooting in the U.S.


On Thursday, Oct. 22, a dice game being played on the outskirts of Tennessee State University resulted in one death, and three injured. As the dust settles from another campus shooting in the United States, it seems as if this article has been written before. President Obama will make his remarks about how the event was a tragedy and that no family should be put through such a traumatizing event.

According to the Metropolitan Nashville Police Department, the shooting was the result of a dice game dispute, right outside Tennessee State University. The two individuals involved in the shooting were not enrolled at the university.

USA Today reports that a 19-year-old male student has died and three 18-year-old female students were injured by stray bullets. Gun control is such a highly debated topic and, as shootings like these continue to occur, those who are pro gun find their defense resting on constantly weakening ground.

One of the most depressing aspects of the shootings is that they are so frequent it is almost impossible to treat them with the respect and delicacy that such a situation requires. Instead, reports come through after a shooting and the common response is a defeated head shake and an understanding that the gun laws in the country must be changed.

According to the United Nations, out of the 11 countries in the world with a per capita GDP of more than $30,000 and a population of 20 million or more, the USA has more homicides by firearm per 100,000 population than the rest of the countries combined. With a rate of 3.2, the United States has more homicides by firearm than Italy (.7), Taiwan (.6), Canada (.5), Spain (.2), Germany (.2), Australia (.1), U.K. (.1), France (.1), South Korea (.03), and Japan (.01) put together.

The call has been made before and it will be made again, but changes are needed in this country, and the situation can only be ignored for so long.

Canada gets a ‘good-looking PM’


Justin Trudeau, 43-year-old political leader, makes his way to the stage at Liberal party headquarters in Montreal on Monday, Oct. 19, after winning the 42nd Canadian general election. As the elder son of former Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau, Justin Trudeau has a handsome looking and great enthusiasm is sports. He is called by foreign media as the “sexiest leader in the world.”

“Canada’s Good Looking PM” has become a heated discussion, and Justin Trudeau and his government even built a Chinese micro blog account for Chinese Internet users. It is one of the most searched topic in micro blogs and has more than 60.000 followers.

Justin Trudeau and his government updated their campaign and their election platform such as Justin Trudeau promised to respond to Canada’s economic slowdown by running modest deficits and building infrastructure. He has refused to raise Canada’s corporate tax rate. He has been noncommittal on the new trade deal, the Trans-Pacific Partnership, and he has promised, vaguely, that Canada will have a more progressive climate change policy.

According to CBC News, messages of congratulations to Justin Trudeau are coming in from world leaders. Reuters reported Tuesday that The White House congratulated Trudeau on his win.

Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi offered a warm welcome on Twitter, “Looking forward to seeing you at G20,” and other welcoming tweets came from India, Mexican Malaysia and The Maldives.

Although the Canadian media coverage says that the liberal win trends worldwide, many U.S. coverage may prefer to conclude that the winning of Justin Trudeau is “low expectation and high relief.” The victory denied a fourth term to Harper and his Conservative party, and people would like to see him clean up the mess at this term.

Chafee’s campaign comes to end


When I was going through the news this morning, I noticed that among the headlines regarding the primary race for the upcoming 2016 election was Lincoln Chafee’s announcement that he was ending his bid for the Democratic presidential nomination.

Being that Chafee is the former governor of Rhode Island, my home state, I had been keeping up with his campaign since he announced his participation this past June. Since then, he hasn’t had an overwhelming amount of support behind him – Hillary Clinton has surely been stealing the spotlight lately, especially this past week where she did well in the debates and her competition, Virginia Senator Jim Webb as well as Vice President Joe Biden, both dropped out. The fact that he followed suit isn’t exactly groundbreaking news to many.

Regardless, seeing the announcement brought back a few memories of when he was actively governing my home state that made me think about all the pressures that politicians face when they constantly have the media watching their every move.

Chafee’s son, Caleb, was actually a high school classmate of mine when I attended Portsmouth Abbey School. He was in the graduating class above mine and we were good friends, as we both boarded on campus and it was a close-knit community. The week of his graduation, all the seniors ended their classes earlier than the rest of the students, and we had final exams while they were celebrating “grad week” – an annual week notorious for off-campus parties.

Caleb threw a party at his house while his parents were out of town and one girl who attended it ended up being hospitalized for alcohol poisoning. Everyone there was obviously under age, and the police inevitably got involved. Suffice to say, it stirred up a lot of publicity seeing as the party took place at the governor’s house and Rhode Island has a strict social host law which left Gov. Chafee responsible for the events that took place there. It was a bit of a local scandal in the weeks surrounding the incident.

Obviously what had happened was innocent enough, and there wasn’t that much damage done by the news media to Chafee’s reputation in the aftermath, but it did leave an impact on Caleb’s personal life (he ended up having to defer a year from Brown to do community service abroad in order to restore the University’s confidence in him as a freshman admit).

At the time, I didn’t really know much about the news media’s role in politics, but now that I’m a journalism major, it makes me more fully understand how critical that role is. Had the incident happened this past spring, Chafee may never have decided to even enter the race at all, considering it would have occurred in entirely different circumstances.

The incident would have been magnified under the lens of the news media and entire nation would have known about it — and it would have been used as a weapon against him by his competitors.  The things that occur to a person have an entirely different meaning when that person is a potential presidential candidate and it is the media that is single-handedly responsible for this fact.

Although the incident happened years ago and is water under the bridge at this point in time, especially since Chafee is no longer campaigning, it’s very interesting to me how I can look at the things that have happened in the past now with the eyes of a journalist, rather than just another on-looker.

Hillary emerges as victorious at hearing


If you checked major news networks online today, most of them displayed the following headlines:

ABC: “The ‘get Hillary’ committee did not get Hillary”

Politico: “Clinton Survives 11-hour Benghazi grilling”

Tribune: “11-hour grilling of Clinton reveals little new on Benghazi attacks”

USA Today: “No clear wins for GOP at Benghazi hearing”

Over the course of the past few months, Hillary Clinton has been questioned — and most people would say attacked — regarding the use of her personal email service in relation to the Benghazi attacks that took place in 2012 killing four people.

It seems as though Hillary Clinton has been questioned about the use of her private email server since the beginning of her campaign.

Hillary was questioned and provided testimony for more 11 hours yesterday, being questioned by a House Select Committee on Benghazi. Nearly all news organizations provided extensive and in-depth coverage of the meetings, with CNN providing hourly updates on their website and on live news.

Based on what I have seen, what is happening to Hillary Clinton is the political equivalent of a witch hunt during the Salem trials. Hillary Clinton has been questioned beyond the point of acceptability regarding this issue and each time, her response is the same and clear. The fact that the media has still continued to cover this issue in regards to Hillary Clinton is unbelievable, as well as the fact that this special committee was even created.

Comparatively, the news has covered Donald Trump in a similar fashion, but the coverage has only seemed to benefit him. However, with Hillary Clinton, the coverage of this issue is affecting her campaign.

Her numbers have gone down in the polls and her trustworthiness has been damaged and questioned by a large majority of the American public. However, there is hope for Hillary with this situation. As indicated by the news/article titles above, it is clear that most news networks believe that Hillary not only survived the 11-hour meeting, but that she has gained an ability to turn the tide and direction of the Benghazi story and her private email server.

As a young voter, I did question Hillary’s trustworthiness because of the coverage of the Benghazi “email scandal.” After completing my own research on the topic, my views have changed and I am proud that Hillary was able to not only successfully survive yesterday’s meeting, but that she may now be able to gain control over the situation and thus her campaign.

Gun responsibility is also important


Coverage of certain events can create public opinion on social issues. As the debate over guns continues to hit a deadlock, real life happenings provide evidence for each side. The perfect example is the case of the 11-year-old boy who shot his 8-year-old neighbor over an argument about puppies.

The quandary began when the boy asked his across-the-street neighbor, MaKayla Dyer, if he could play with her puppies. Dyer refused and went back to her yard. The boy then obtained his father’s 12-gauge shotgun from an unlocked closet to shoot her. He fired from inside his house and hit her in the chest. He then threw the gun out of the window of his mobile home. The boy is being charged with first-degree murder in a juvenile court.

While gun control is an extremely important issue, gun responsibility is the equally important issue brought to light in this event. Where the gun owner keeps the gun, how he or she explains its use to other household members, and what degree of danger the gun holds must be taught, especially to young children.

As the boy’s father did not properly keep his gun from him, did not teach him the responsibilities of having a gun or what it can actually do, the boy is now facing murder charges. While the boy’s psychological state must also be taken into account, being responsible with deadly weapons is an absolute must. It is shocking when such a serious case occurs that could have most likely been prevented with some counseling and communication. The publication of this event not only gives justice to such a tragedy, but is also a reminder to gun owners to keep tabs on their weapons, especially when there is a child in the household.

Coverage of Joe Biden’s announcement


Joe Biden finally spoke on the sought-after decision as to whether or not he would be running for president in the 2016 election.

That answer is No.

The press conference at the White House Rose Garden was a sudden event with no prior knowledge given to the public or press that it was happening. The press was contacted mere hours before the statement took place. All press at moments notice ran to The White House to try and capture live shots moments before the start of the statement.

All online news organizations put breaking news messages on their website to alert readers. Live coverage was immediately available on every site. With the announcement of the statement, live coverage replaced set programs on each of these news television stations.

After the statement, coverage took place and every online news site had lead breaking news stories on Biden’s decision and what was said. There was discussion on the event thereafter in which we were able to hear opinions on the news. The manner in which news organizations were able to speedily obtain coverage of this event after not getting any notice that it was even happening is highly commendable and just goes to show how fast one has to react as a journalist.

I am interested to see how the discussions continue on this decision and how it will affect the rest of the political campaign.