Wednesday, July 29, 2009

I Blame OJ.

Yesterday I mentioned that I would be revisiting this nagging media circus issue. I blame it all on OJ.

I was a junior in high school when the infamous Bronco chase took over TV's across the nation. I remember this because I was in the hospital at the time and was actually watching a baseball game when I got interrupted. I was pretty ticked.

I was a freshman in college when the verdict was handed down. That means the fiasco covered 3 years of my life. 3 years!! And it was all televised. Remember? Court TV made their mark and the news media provided an update on the days proceedings every. single. day.

Prior to that I can't say that I remember there ever being any kind of fuss over a celebrity's indiscretions or law enforcement issues. There may have been because I grew up without TV so I may have missed it all - well, not missed it but avoided being inundated by it. But just the same, I don't think it was ever glamourized like it is now.

But I question the integrity of these "public" court cases. The Scott Peterson and Casey Anthony cases are prime examples. Just how impartial can a jury be when every newspaper and television is blaring details about the case that may or may not be official, confirmed or even a shadow on the investigative picture? Nancy Grace gave Casey Anthony a black eye before the police even got to her and while it panned out this time, what would have happened if it hadn't? Would my pal Nancy have given a third of the time to her apology?

I guess my point is that until the public makes it clear that we don't want all the nitty gritty details until they are substantiated, I don't think we can really have justice. Look one more time at Michael Jackson's case. The media made a big deal about the doctor's staff removing boxes from the storage unit. Who's to say those weren't files for completely unrelated patients that were being referenced for completely unrelated reasons? And yet it was immediately all over the "news" and more suspicions were raised.

It's nonsense. If I was a great activist I would stage a boycott of the news organizations. I would slam their in boxes and mailboxes with mail asking them to refrain from glorifying criminals to celebrity status. I would insist that celebrities and sports figures who commit crimes be blacklisted and never allowed to appear on TV, a movie screen, or a sports field until they had done years of community service and proved themselves to be respectable role models worthy of being admired.

But I'm not all those things. So instead I will sit here at my computer and blame OJ. He started it all.

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