Reading the articles about war and journalism this week, I am just so blown away by the fact that people would risk their lives in order to cover wars. That being said, I think it is so completely respectable and I can understand that they believe the public should see what’s going on. Personally, I do not believe I could handle such a thing. To always have that feeling in the pit of your stomach because you know you can never be safe. And not only that, but it is hard to start a life that the average person wants – being in a relationship, getting married, having kids, etc. If you’re always covering some war and are never guaranteed to see tomorrow, why would you start a new life that you might have to leave behind? And then to set off on this journey that you are willing to risk your life for and receive backlash for the type of coverage you got? Yeah no, not my cup of tea. Especially when your President doesn’t even respect what you’re doing for their country.
President Johnson believed journalists were playing stories on the TV that were dramatized events in the Vietnam war – the first war to ever get televised. I can’t give my opinion on whether or not I felt as if they were dramatized, because I was not alive then and I haven’t really seen much footage of it. That being said, did Johnson ever go to the Vietnam war and see it in real life for himself? If not, how can he say that it’s dramatized? He is not out there every single day risking his life as a soldier. He is not out there every single day of his life as a reporter trying to show their home country what’s going on and what their loved ones are going through as they fight.
I’m not trying to say that all journalists who cover the war are right. Because they’re not. A lot of companies do only try to make everything seem more like a movie than real life. Drama is what Americans want, and TV companies cater to what America wants. Objectivity is so hard to have and it’s even harder when you have to report facts that will ruin a different party or sect’s reputation. But a fact is a fact, and journalists should be allowed to state those facts without being criticized by people for thinking they are just reporting their own opinions and biases, not just simple facts and data.