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Is It Time For The Media To Leave The People Of Newtown, CT Alone?

Submitted by on December 24, 2012 – 1:56 pmNo Comment
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For the last 10 days or so, reporters, cameramen, and TV personalities have lined the streets of Newtown, CT looking for more details about what took place at the Sandy Hook Elementary School on December 14. They’ve talked to the kids who were inside the school when Adam Lanza entered it with three guns. They’ve talked to the parents of those kids and asked them about the whole experience. They’ve talked to the neighbors of those parents and asked them what it’s like for a tragedy like this to hit so close to home. And, they’ve…well, they’ve talked to just about anyone and everyone to get a better sense of what Newtown, CT is going through right now. In such a small town, it’s turned into a media circus in every single sense of the word.

But, now, the people of Newtown, CT have a very simple message for all of the reporters, cameramen, and TV personalties that are still there: Go home. No, really, go home. Like, now. “We want our town back, our lives back,” one Newtown resident said late last week. “You did your job, now leave us be.”

Do they have a point? Should reporters leave now and allow the people of Newtown to try and regain some sense of normalcy? Or, do reporters have the right, the obligation even, to stay and document what they see in the coming weeks? The truth is, both sides have a point. On the one hand, it seems like things have gotten a little bit out of control in Newtown. People are trying to move on by carrying out funerals and laying victims to rest, and the media are literally getting in the way of that. They’re crowding streets, making it difficult for people to get around, and making a really sad situation even worse by continuously sticking microphones in front of people and pointing cameras in their direction.

However, there is some good that the reporters, cameramen, and TV personalities are doing. They’re shining a light on the lives of the Sandy Hook victims and giving them some much-deserved attention. They’re also digging deeper into this tragedy in an effort to find out what happened and what Americans can do to prevent further tragedies like it from taking place. They’re letting everyone know what it’s like to be a Newtown resident right now.

So, it’s a very slippery slope. But, hopefully, it’s one that’ll get worked out soon. As we move further and further away from December 14, more and more media trucks will pack up and leave. As the funeral processions stop and people get back to trying to live their everyday lives, media members will stop badgering them so much. The circus will be over. But, for now, both sides will just need to tolerate one another for a little while longer. Just until all the facts are straight and all of the stories that need to be told get out. At times, it’s going to be hard for both sides. But, it’ll all be over soon enough.

And then, we can all move on to the really difficult part: Trying to heal and press on.

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