With today's modern political climate, it's clear that journalism has lost its way. Today's reporters need to learn a thing or two from the past, when journalism was more than just a ratings machine. We need to return to the days when the media was the fourth branch of government and the last defense of the people. Here are six things that we need to get back to if we ever want things to get better:
qvist / Shutterstock
Moderate Points of View
Today we're forced to get our news from the Tucker Carlsons of the world. Where's our Edward R. Murrow? News men used to have integrity. They used to report on a story without putting their own personal point of views over top of them. Instead of opinions, we used to get facts and we were better for it. Enough already with the partisanship! Just give it to me straight, thank you very much.
Hard Hitting Journalism
While we're at it, what happened to sticking with a story? With today's 24 hour news cycle people crank out whatever "lead" gets put on their desk because otherwise they won't have enough news to fill all their slots. It's disgusting. What happened to Woodward and Bernstein? Why aren't more of our reporters sticking with a story until they get it right? Why aren't they putting their necks on the line and meeting strangers in a parking lot in the dead of night? We absolutely need to return to the good old days.
Jose Gil / Shutterstock
Fedoras With Press Badges In Them
While we're at it, what happened to a proper reporter's uniform. Today, it's all about fitted blazers and tasteful dresses, but everyone knows how a reporter is supposed to dress. First and foremost, they need to be wearing a fedora with their press badge sticking out of it. This is non-negotiable. They should also be wearing some sort of brownish vest with a collared shirt that has long, slightly puffy sleeves. They should carry around a notepad that flips open from the top, a big camera with a giant flash bulb, and while they don't necessarily need to be smoking at all times, they should at least have a full ashtray by their typewriter so we know they've been up for a long time.
Funny Nicknames Like "Scoop"
Rachel Maddow? Brit Hume? No! Everyone knows that a reporter should have a snappy nickname that reflects how good they are at breaking a story. One syllable names like "Scoop" and "Zip" are preferable, but if they end in "-er" then two syllable names are also acceptable. The closest thing we have to a properly named reporter these days is "Wolf Blitzer" and it makes me sick inside.
Joseph Sohm / Shutterstock
Running To Payphones Whenever Anyone Says Something Explosive In A Courtroom
I feel very strongly about this. If something explosive happens in a courtroom, reporters must all run out and fight for a payphone so they can call their editors. Enough with your cell phones, and social media. Everyone knows the proper way this sort of thing is supposed to be done and barely anyone is doing it anymore. What have we come to?
Starting Wars With Fake News
Oh yeah, remember when that happened? I know it's nice to think that there was a time when things were better, but that just isn't the case. Things are awful now and things were awful then. Fake news has always been around and it probably always will. There were a lot of great reporters in the past, but there were also a lot of really shitty ones we don't remember. What's more is there are also a lot of great reporters doing awesome work today! We all have an idealized version of how things used to be, and these are hardly ever accurate. Of course, modern journalism, like a lot of things, needs to get better. That said, nothing will ever improve if our goal is to return to a past that never actually existed.