There is always going to be someone that says – if you do not help us then no one will -. However if you are dead, in jail, in a mental hospital, a hostage or unemployed then who can you help ? The people that have put their trust in you to cover a story, to do a job have just lost a valuable asset … you.
Being a journalist, regardless if a large television station, newspaper, online or independent all require the same thing
— stay on course and do not get side tracked —
I cannot express enough or tell you that times have changed. In the past journalist, reporters were not heard of being killed or kidnapped except in the Country of Mexico. Today regardless of what country a journalist, reporter is in well it’s just not considered “safe or protected”.
When a journalist, reporter, news anchor person decide to do a story on their own. Then they jeopardize their job, their life and the lives of anyone that might try to help them. All countries have secrets, have something they do not want told. When I was a youngster my mother told me “ Nancy your being silly corruption exist in every city.” Those are words that I listened to and respected because it was true back then and it is true today. How we choose to reveal a story can either get us killed, in jail, people scared to talk to us or it can help the situation. There are times when more good is actually brought about – without the story published – No, it’s not blackmail it’s people working together for the benefit of all. Few people can actually do this that is why when my mother told me time and time “Nancy you have to stop trying to be like someone else” I would make sure those words never left my memory. I may think I can fly like an eagle but I am a Human Being and only the eagle can fly.
“Respect” my mother always said will get you a long way Nancy. Being a journalist, reporter, photographer, camera person, editor, publisher regardless if it’s a job or just a hobby, we have got to have respect. When someone says I do not want my picture taken then respect that, when you are in a public place is it difficult to ask “may I take the picture of you, of your child”, when covering a story to get information is it too much to let people know they are speaking with media that can write anything they say, when in a foreign city, state or country is it too much to respect the local authorities ? Respect is a seven letter word that can save and stop many situations from occurring. Therefore despite wanting to be funny, I think it is important not to make fun of or lash out at the religion of someone. I grew up in the Catholic religion and I would be offended if someone made fun of Jesus Christ on the cross, or the selling of beer at some of the local Catholic Church fund raisers.
In conclusion, while we respect and appreciate – Freedom of Speech – it is necessary to acknowledge that Freedom of Speech is not practiced in all parts of the world. In order to help people the most, it is important to stay on course, stay on the highway and get the current story working on … published.