Friday, December 18, 2009

68 Journalists Killed in 2009

It's not something that makes me want to go overseas and cover interesting stories about rape and prostitution. If you click on the title of this blog, you will be taken to an Associated Press article on the Editor & Publisher website, giving you the numbers and locations of killed journalists. None of the 68 journalists killed in 2009 were killed in the United States, but a lot of local foreign journalists were killed in the countries they lived in.

The Shocking Facts:
  • 60 percent increase in deaths from 2008. 68 deaths / 42 deaths
  • 67 deaths in 2007
  • 30 of those 68 were murdered in the Philippines 
 According to the article, these journalists are not all dying in the line of fire. Most of the journalists killed are being murder for doing their job. Nine of the 68 were killed in Somalia during combat conditions. Others were killed for the stories they wrote or for the blogs they wrote expressing their opinions. In Mexico, print journalists died for writing stories on drug traffiking and organized crime. 56 percent of the 68 kills were because of blogging about important stories that television or other print publications have yet to pick up.

When I have my own magazine, that's what it's supposed to be based on; stories that others don't want to cover because of the sensitive material. I know the risks of journalism; it's dangerous. It's not something to get yourself into if you don't expect there to be consequences for your work. And I don't plan on dying or anything, but I do plan to express my opinion about some things that conservative, closed-minded people don't want to hear about. Religion. Abortion. Arranged Marriages. Social Issues. Cultural Issues. Political Stupidity. Your Stupidity! These are just some of the things that I want to write to get your brain working and moving away from being closed-minded. I want to open the minds of the closed-minded. Am I will to die for it, though? Am I willing to die for my opinion? Are you?

(This video contains violent images. Proceed with caution)

It's a tough question, but it's got to be in the back of your mind if you are going to be in this field. As you can see, the numbers are rising. People don't like journalists. They expose you and they tell your business and most of the time it's without remorse. That doesn't mean we should die for it. When one person thinks you should die for writing an article, another person thinks you should be commended for writing that article. But as soon as you put your name in that byline, there's no turning back. The decision is then up to society. There is no journalist protection program.

I don't want to know that my kind are being killed while on duty, but I'm not going to kill people who are staff of the Associated Press because they wrote an article that was depressing. I'm going to take what I read, put it into prospective, and go on with my day knowing that I have one more piece of knowledge that I didn't have before. That's all it is. News. And you deserve to know what's going on in the world.

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