I don't pay much attention to local news on the tv. One channel here has local news on for something like 2 hours, broken into half hour shows all pretty much reporting on the same thing. Over and Over. I think the idea is for people who miss one to be able to catch the next. Whatever the thought behind it, their show, just like most stations, consists of more "no news" than news. The KC Star is a little too establishment and sometimes the Pitch is too far out there to be a serious news source. (I do read it faithfully though) I don't find the national news stations to be much better - though I do read the Wall Street Journal and like the reporting in it.
So the media fails to report on stuff that you need to know, what's left? For me it's the internet. Don't roll your eyes. I know there's a lot of bad information floating around the net as truth - but that's true of mainstream media too. I have found that if you want to know what's going on you should read a variety of bloggers. They all write from their own bias, but you know that before you read. Most people are pretty straight forward about what they support or don't support and you know their bias up front. The same can NOT be said of mainstream media, which often presents itself as fair and honest.
I bring this up because of something I read on The Flogging of America. Btyfrd has many interesting links in this post, but one hit home for me. The fact that police officers are not able to exercise all their rights politically. My father is a police officer in Georgia. I did some checking and Georgia seems to be more progressive than Missouri on this issue.
Anywho - time for rant- How on earth can they expect a police officer to give up so much for his or her job? This job entails long hours, traditionally low pay, and you spend a LOT of time dealing with people society wishes didn't exist. It's on the news when cops shoot people (as it should be) but when they get shot in the line of duty it's not always a major story. This is one of those jobs that can kill you way before your time. Taking this job should be something that is rewarded, not punished. Police officers should do their best not to bring their own biases to the job (it happens, they are just people) but they shouldn't be forced into not having views. If they want to join a committee for their political party they should be allowed to. If they want to solicit donations for their candidate, as long as they don't do it in uniform or as part of the dept., they should be allowed to. When they take off their uniform they are regular people and should be accorded the rights and responsibilities of regular people. Part of what is supposed to make our nation great is the freedom to choose what we think, say and believe. Other employees of the city and state are allowed to participate fully in their political party, why not police officers? Write your representatives and tell them to put this issue back on the table. - rant over-
Now this issue is not the only one mentioned in that post, just the first one I chose to talk about. She details a lot of stuff you may not be aware of. I know that I wasn't aware of most of it. I didn't know that Missouri chose not to ratify the Equal Rights Amendment. I probably wouldn't have known except for a blogger who did some research and put it on the web. The Flogging of America is not the only blog I read, there are quite a few I check out daily, it was just the first one I read this morning. And see, I've already learned more valuable information than I would have if I had watched any of the insipid morning news shows.