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Hold on Just a Minute!

09 Jan 2011

Our corporate hearts break at the thought of what happened in Tucson on Saturday (Jan 8, 2011) when 18 fellow humans were injured, six killed and a US Congresswoman left to fight for her life.  We just can’t wrap our minds around the senseless acts of violence or the idiots(s) who take it upon themselves to play the role of the Devil.

Before I pick this story apart, let’s look at the story itself:  On Saturday morning, Representative Gabriele Giffords, from Arizona’s 8th District was conducting her ongoing “Congress on your Corner event” near a Safeway grocery store when 22 year old Jared Loughner walked to her side and shot her point blank with his semi-automatic Glock 9mm and as she dropped to the sidewalk in a pool of blood, he opened fire on the crowd of about 25-30 before he was wrestled to the ground by bystanders.  Congrats to the heroes as they did more than watch but actually jumped into action!

Prayers from around the country are going out for Ms. Giffords (the wife of astronaut Mark Kelly) who is showing signs of recovery.  One of the reasons she has hope is  the bullet went in to her brain through her temple and exited her forehead.  Had it rattled around inside or torn through the back area of her brain she would have been dead before her body hit the concrete.  One answer to prayer no doubt.

In the rush to get the story out I caught myself longing for the day of two or three networks—the information may have come slowly but it was usually close to accurate.

In the minutes—Yes, Minutes, after the mass shooting—the media, and media-wannabes were out of control with wrong information, stupid titles to the “event” and babbling about things they had no concrete ideas about.  A few examples:

  1. Titles:  Tragedy in Tucson.  Gun battle at a Grocery Store.  Mass Shootings in the Southwest.  Hatred for a House Member.  Blah blah blah.  Are you kidding me?!  Just tell us about the despicable act and stop looking for a movie or book title! Enough already!!!
  2. Radio show hosts who make a living by laughing and joking rush to their studios hundreds and thousands of miles away to become the “definitive word on the shooting” of an elected leader.  Folks, of all the people who took to the airwaves, perhaps one had met the congresswoman, none had ever visited the exact site and all relied on regurgitating TV stories and Drudge Report info.  Guys, I appreciate your enthusiasm but to suddenly become “Walter Cronkite” is a disservice to you and your media outlet.  If it’s a tornado or similar incident directly impacting your local area and you have people on the ground, okay.  But to somehow know this lady or others there, or act like you do, is, in a word, sick.  Stay home and watch the game(s) and let the news tell the story as it appears on the wire.  I know you want to stand out as a news leader but that rarely happens on a daily basis so you you’re note fooling anyway.  (By the way, I have not specific hosts in mind as I write this.  However, they know who they are if it’s hitting them in the forehead.)
  3. Because everyone was in such a hurry to be the first to tell us of the doom and gloom via radio shows, TV broadcasts, blogs and the like we the people were lost.  First, 19 people were dead.  Next, 19 had been shot but only a dozen had been killed.  Then, Representative Giffords had been shot and killed.  The killer got away and had an accomplice.  Six bystanders were killed (Though Channel 12 went with four as late as Sunday morning).  This was Sarah Palin’s fault for “targeting” Gifford’s district.  This was an attack by illegal aliens—or those close to the cause.   People, can we all just take a breath and pause so we may do our homework and tell a story that’s at least close to the real happenings?  I know ratings and extra revenue drive most all that media types do today but it is a MAJOR disservice to the general public.  When I heard local talkers were running to their stations to tell me what had just happened two-and-a-half hours away I shook my head.  “There’s nothing they can tell me that the news folks on the scene couldn’t tell me.  Guys, stay home.”  They didn’t.

So here’s what will be linked to this story over the coming weeks—mark my words:

a)    A call for gun control.  When they go there, I want those who demand controls to also focus on cars, pencils, dogs, falling glass and Kung Fu fighters.  All have killed someone along the way!

b)   How dare Sarah Palin target this sweet lady (And all accounts tell us 40 year old Gabrielle Giffords was/is a very caring woman).  Governor Palin targeted that district as a potential win for the liberals.  This strategy, and its accompanying language, has been used since politics made its way across the Atlantic!

c)    Illegal immigration played a role.  Nope; sorry.  Ms. Giffords was a liberal who was fighting for a better way to handle illegal immigration issues in this country and was noted for her tough stance on those who break into America.

d)   Jared Loughner shot her because she was a liberal and he was a conservative.  No, sorry again, they were both democrats.

How about a different approach?  The 22-year-old alleged killer had ongoing behavioral problems and snapped?  The house where he lived with his parents was four minutes from the grocery store and so perhaps he dreamed about his way to be noticed by the masses and what better way than to shoot an elected leader, especially when you can walk there and have a bagel and coffee before you go nuts?

I am not excusing what young Mr. Loughner did on Saturday.  If found guilty, let’s fast track him for a bed with awaiting doctors with needles on the ready.  But, at the same time, we all need to get our priorities straight:  Do we want news fast and furious—even when it’s wrong or are we willing to wait a few extra minutes so we’re not getting gossip in a National Enquirer approach—gossip that causes undo stress on the general populace and details which need serious corrections almost by the minute?

The cable to the national to the local news outlets (radio and TV) will give us what we want.  When it’s real life—this is NOT the way I want my information!

My prayers go out to the wounded and the dead in Tucson and the extended families—I’m just trying to figure out how many people to be praying for…

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January 9, 2011 9:20 pm Reply

[...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by AzShootr, Stoney Blair. Stoney Blair said: Ankarlo nailed it. // Hold on Just a Minute! | Ankarlo.net http://bit.ly/gXDybr [...]

January 9, 2011 9:53 pm Reply

I miss your show. Calm, rational, even-keeled, and not all about you.

Thank you for reminding us what rational perspective sounds like.

January 9, 2011 11:07 pm Reply

Thank You Darrell for injecting some sanity into this mess. You took the words right out of my mouth……sure miss your show !!

January 9, 2011 11:08 pm Reply

I would really like to know why Van Jones and Frances Fox Piven who opened New Years with a call for a “violent and bloody revolution” are getting a free pass with both the press and the law while Glenn /beck and /Sarah Palin, both who want education, ballots and to create new leaders instead of using bullets are taking the blame??

January 9, 2011 11:52 pm Reply

Darrell, Bless you for your words. On top of the sadness and grief I feel for this horrible crime, I am so ashamed at the profane circus that is being performed.

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