Tuesday, July 19, 2005

Am I the Only One Bothered By This?

So I went to various online job sites today, like I always do, and found this one for a producer position at Washingtonpost.com. Don't get me started that an entry-level position should not be called a "producer" but whatever. It was the following job duty that... I found disturbing...

* Researching and producing a gallery of U.S. military fatalities in Iraq and Afghanistan

First, I can't believe they'd be so brazen about that. Gee, the Post doesn't want to have someone capable of finding good stories out of either place? Just fatalities? I go back to my title of this post.


At 2:43 PM, Blogger drummaster2001 said...

there could be a few reasons why they would want images of this.

1) use as propaganda to create more pro-war sentiment
2) show people what war is going to create anti-war sentiment

**i dont know which way the post leans as i am from Jersey and have my own paper

i agree with you in that it is not something to be shown in the newspaper. i would not want to wake up to find these gruesome pictures on the front page while drinking coffee.

At 3:06 PM, Blogger Esther said...

Thanks for stopping by and commenting, drummaster.

As for your first one, do you mean pro-war or anti-war? Cause I think it would do more for the latter.

The Post, to me at least, tends to lean more left... not drastically by any means, but a left-leaning friend interned there and it surprised even him.

I have no problem (well, sort of) of it being shown in a paper or in an online gallery -- but to list it as a duty in a job posting?! That blew me away.

At 4:29 PM, Anonymous Jonathan said...

The Post editorial board supported the war, at least initially. Putting aside the job description, why would anyone have a problem with seeing the faces of and reading about those who gave their lives in Iraq? We were never asked to sacrifice anything for Iraq. Some families lost their loved ones to the effort. Pro- or anti-war, the very least we can do is acknowledge those who paid with their lives. Seems like a pretty small sacrifice to me.

Drummaster, you haven't seen the pictures, so your response is understandable. They are portrait-style photos of the fallen soldiers, taken before they were killed. They look like graduation pictures, with short written descriptions. Breaks one's heart to see how young they are. The gallery runs about once every few months and is very tastefully done, under the circumstances. Too many Americans want their war to be fought neat and clean. No returning coffin shots, no reminders of the human toll.

Esther, I don't think this job is for you (although it would be great if you moved back to the D.C. area!).

At 4:34 PM, Blogger Esther said...

Haha, thanks Jonathan. I'm way past entry level, even for the Post. And that job sure didn't seem entry level. Plus telling me I can't write OR edit...well, then it's definitely not the job for me.

To me, doing that gallery eats away at our resolve and I guess the cynic in me thinks that's their intention -- not to honor the dead. If it was strictly to honor, then I would be okay with it. I don't think that was Nightline's intention, when they did something similar and I doubt the Post too.

At 4:54 PM, Anonymous Jonathan said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

At 4:59 PM, Anonymous Jonathan said...

If our resolve is so weak that it could be eroded by seeing the actual faces of those who died on our behalf, then the resolve was probably not very strong to begin with.

Frankly, I'm surprised to hear you take this position. You have always done a great job of humanizing the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. How is this situation any different?

At 5:14 PM, Anonymous felis said...

Oh Esther!
Another of your beautiful understatements, which I adore so much.

At 6:19 PM, Blogger Always On Watch said...

I get the Washington Post delivered to my home every day. The paper has a regular weekly feature (Saturdays, I think) entitled "Faces of the Fallen." While I strongly favor honoring those who have given their lives in the service of our nation, the anti-war crowd uses that feature to prove the Bush-lied, people-died theory.

The Post editor are definitely anti-war. If they weren't, they would run a feature about how most military families are not angry about the war in Iraq and, instead, are proud of their servicemen and servicewomen.

A few years back, the Post came under criticism for showing "Palestinians," most of whom were aggrieved by their treatment at the hands of Israeli troops; one article focused on the checkpoints and the inhibition of free travel (Never mind the truth behind those checkpoints). In contrast, I have rarely seen many graphic features about Israelis blown to bits by suicide bombers.

At 8:18 PM, Blogger SEAWITCH said...

I have read some of the posts of the fallen at WaPo. They are respectfully done and I think it honors those who died in service to our country. Legacy.com has similiar posts. It is no way like the daily death count they have as the top news story at yahoo.news.

Of course the job description posted could have been worded better.

At 8:28 PM, Blogger Tran Sient said...

I wouldn't have a problem with it if it is respectful. However, I give it about a 50/50 shot that it is agenda driven somehow.

The Post is easily left leaning, not so much on their opinion page, but in what they choose to present as news.

At 10:00 PM, Blogger Esther said...

Wow. I step out for a meeting and poof.... ;)

Jonathan, oh Jonathan...you thought your comment was so good, you had to say it twice? ;) Seriously, I guess I do question the resolve of this country. I have trust issues. But if it's done tastefully, etc., then okay. But in a job description? I still say weird.

Haha..felis... :)

AOW, yes -- I had heard from a young friend who interned there that they seemed a bit too pro-Palestinian -- and he's not even Jewish.

Thanks seawitch...glad it's done well.

TS, I agree.

At 11:48 PM, Blogger beakerkin said...


Drummaster is my nephew in case anyone is wondering.

I have a problem with the media in general. They pick antiwar voices as legitimate. Thus when an eye witness to 9-11 says to the left you are full of it they scream shut up.

I have had that experience too many times. There are plenty of soldiers families that do not buy into the PC idiocy. For the record my brother is now in Kuwait. You also know how far I went to do my bit.

At 9:10 AM, Blogger Gindy said...

I am not surprised at all. It is just a shame they aren't looking for a person to find all of the good things that are going on in Iraq. Good find.

At 1:46 PM, Blogger Sergeant America said...

I am!

At 3:20 PM, Blogger drummaster2001 said...

to answer your question, it could work equally for both of my points.

1) for the first scenario- people would see that insurgents and other suicide bombers are killing soldiers fighting for democracy and freedom, thus stirring people to support the war.

2) for the second scenario- people will see that soldiers are being killed and that is what war is, the ugly side of battle, causing people to turn anti-war seeing the price we have to pay to fight the war in Iraq and terror.

in my opinion, the former has a better chance of using it as propaganda

At 3:29 PM, Blogger Esther said...

beak, thanks for that piece of info. :) My prayers are with your brother. And yes, you've certainly done your part!

Thanks gindy. SA -- :)

drummaster, I hope you're right!


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