The Tribune’s “Tragedy”

COLUMBIA, Mo. — Eighteen months after GateHouse Media bought the family-owned Columbia Daily Tribune, the staff has been slashed, readers are frustrated and circulation has plunged. No doubt daily newspapers have retrenched within the last 10 years in the face of market challenges. But the Tribune has been bled dry to achieve financial results. As…

Kids report shootings – no kidding

David Hogg, the 17-year-old news director at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School’s TV station, crouches on the floor of a darkened classroom.  He grabs his phone, flips on the video camera and starts asking questions.  He speaks just above a whisper, because somewhere on campus – nobody knows where – a gunman with an assault…

#MeToo, the press and due process

President Donald J. Trump’s sad soliloquy for departing White House Staff Secretary Rob Porter and Trump’s plaintive plea for Due Process for men is both confused and hypocritical. First, due process is a primarily a legal term, although it is sometimes is used in a broader sense outside the law as a synonym for fairness.…

Cliches and distraction

opinion Transparency.  The people’s right to know. Un-American. Treasonous. Political firestorm.  Constitutional crisis. These cliches, exaggerations and emotional charges have in recent months filled news columns, air waves and Twitter feeds of millions of Americans.  They don’t help make sense of the chaotic, nasty, ill-informed national discussion about whether President Trump is obstructing justice in…

How social media have created an uninformed society

Americans love news. We get a thrill clicking on enticing headlines, following intricate celebrity details, exploring bad guy’s motives, sympathizing with tragic events and ranting alongside our favorite politicians. But we are also busy. Few of us — especially millennials  — have or take time to browse through newspapers or linger over magazines. We need…

When the fake is real and real is “fake”

Opinion In one universe — the universe of facts and reality — Special Counsel Robert S. Mueller III is painstakingly compiling evidence President Donald Trump repeatedly obstructed the criminal investigation into Russia’s interference in the 2016 presidential election. In an alternative universe — one inhabited by conspiracies, right-wing media and Trump die-hards — a “secret…

A logo, and team, by any other name…

“The Cleveland Indians announced Monday they are dropping the Chief Wahoo logo from their uniforms next year, bowing to decades of complaints that the grinning, red-faced caricature used since 1947 is racist.” That news from the Associated Press in Cleveland was quickly carried Monday across the nation in the New York Times, on NPR, USA Today, the…