SXMPhotoThere may be typos, please forgive me …. 

No clue what time it is, maybe 1:15 in Vegas and three hours later on my side of the world.  For some reason I can’t sleep.  I’ve decided to take Sunday off, and put thinking to rest.  Of course, before I do that I need to get some of these thoughts down on the screen in front of me, because otherwise they will linger.

So let’s see, what’s at the top of the list is the mishap by Brian Williams.  I find it so fascinating to watch the media, and I still don’t really know who ‘the media’ is or are because truly it is not a single entity.  It’s way too early to operationally define ‘the media’ though and so let’s just go with the flow.

So as I was saying, I find it so interesting to watch the media at work.  Here we find Brian Williams, the host of NBC News, in the hot seat.  I have watched the clip wherein he mentioned that he was subject to enemy fire, and I have heard the allegations that he lied.  I have also seen where he apologized for his, and I’m not sure this is his word but I’m pretty sure ‘misrememberings’ was used in tweets that quoted his apology.  See how I don’t necessarily trust what I read.  What’s scary is I know what ‘misrememberings’ means.

So his memory was tarnished.  Why do I doubt that?  I don’t think it was his memory as opposed to a calculated, but harmless way, that the media operates.  Do they dare admit that they embellish when reporting?  Imagine the liability suits that might come in by the truckloads, if anyone admits to knowingly lying when reporting the news.

Yet, why are we doubting everything based on this?  I mean just because we are now aware that the news media embellishes because we have proof, are we really that surprised? If you believed everything the media says then it is understandable that something like this would impact your sense of trust.  As for me, I never once believed all that was reported anytime I watched the news.

In fact, I have seen where the media has done the same exact thing.  In a story, I was involved in once, there was a little bit of embellishment and after I saw the clip, I reached out to the reporter and said that I just wanted to be sure they that they knew the facts.  The facts as I had shared them were clearly not those stated in the report.  They knew the facts but did not wish to change their story that had aired without my seeing it.  I told myself that the reasons they changed my account of what had happened was to add some sort of dramatic effect.  I would not have allowed the story to air that way had I made sure that I was given the authority to approve the story but I never expected that this would be necessary.  I had trusted the reporters to tell the story the way I had shared it with them.  I did not expect them, nor did I think it needed embellishment. After seeing the report on television, I simply felt that the reporter was doing her job the way she knew how.  Anytime someone saw the story, and asked me about it I simply said that I believed she altered it a bit to provide a dramatic effect.  As I said, I felt it was dramatic enough but she must have wanted to add something more, similar to the way Brian may have. I merely assumed she wanted the effect that her additions would create and she was just trying to make the story better by tweaking it a bit.  So is it okay that news reporters embellish a bit?  Was the reporter who shared my encounter lying?

I could share the name of the reporter I’m speaking about but I am not going to share who she is, nor am I going to accuse her of lying.  The reason is, because I think she’s a great reporter and she was going out of her way to share a very positive story.  I do not think she thought it was lying as opposed to part of her job to share a very compelling story.  I’m not suggesting this is okay, but I am suggesting the it might be common place.  Maybe it shouldn’t be but the news has to compete with the likes of TMZ, and others that use drama to get ratings.  I just think that some reporters embellish to make the news a bit more romantic.  That’s what I think Brian was doing.  He added something, whether it was conscious or unconscious, he did do that.  I think he did it to create an impact that was positive and drive home a point, that they were in enemy territory and that he was going home to safety while those fighting the war were not.

I’m not inclined to think that everything reported is fact.  I think that is naive.  I still trust most news sources the same way I did before I found out about this misinformation.  I believe half of what I read, and half of what I see when it airs on the nightly news.  That’s just because I’m aware and I know that in order to know the full story, you need to have seen it yourself and even then it’s probably wise to question what you saw.

Next on the docket the Aaron Hernandez trial.  I’m going to say this as best as I can without sounding critical of the judge.  I don’t know what she was thinking.  She removed a juror.  She told the jury exactly why she removed the jury.  Well, I suppose that the juror that was removed managed to make an even bigger impact than if that juror had been permitted to stay.  I would suggest there is already grounds for an appeal or a mistrial, but if I were the defense attorney, I would not be filing any motion anytime soon.  I think that the judge’s actions already gave the existing jurors all that is needed to create reasonable doubt.  That’s not to say that more information won’t be coming that will cause them to convict Mr. Hernandez, but for now the judge’s removal of the juror, and her sharing the exact reasons why, gave the jury something to think about.  I am not an attorney or a judge, but I’ve made my way through several years of school studying the Criminal Justice system, and I’ve completed all of my classes toward a Doctorate of Philosophy in Public Policy Administration with a specialization in law.  I’ve  also tuned in to Law & Order a few times.  Okay, maybe more than a few.  I’m going to suggest the judge should have handled this differently.  I reached out to Michael McCann, one of the finest legal analysts I know who writes for Sports Illustrated, and he suggested that the judge did not want any of the other jurors to make the same mistake and that’s why she acted the way she did.  I will suggest that she did not have to provide all the details she did.  I think she made a mistake in doing so.

Until next time . . .