from Toogood Reports
March 16, 2003
For as long as I can remember I wanted to do something noble and honorable with my life.
Finding a profession that would allow me to pursue that goal became a quest that took up much of my teens and early twenties.
The professions I considered were vast and varied, including oceanography (gotta save those baby whales), community activism (whatever the hell that was), theater (to illuminate great truths for the masses) and, if you can believe it, the priesthood (I wasn't even Catholic).
Now that I'm on the verge of middle age, it pangs me to report that I have utterly failed in my mission.
I became a journalist.
I can tell you from 17 years experience that there is absolutely nothing honorable or noble about journalism. How can it be? No profession in which the vast majority of its practitioners are as stupid as your average journalist is can be.
I'll explain. Honor and nobility are qualities that you set out to achieve. You don't just stumble into them. It takes effort. Stupidity, however, just happens. No work involved there. It is its own beginning and ending. Stupid is just plain stupid.
And plain stupid is what most journalists are. They're stupid when it comes to history. They're stupid when it comes to politics. They're stupid when it comes to economics. They're stupid when it comes to the sciences. They're stupid when it comes to great literature.
But most of all, journalists are stupid with it comes to knowing just how stupid thay are. And that is about as stupid as you can be.
Ironically, as stupid as they are, they're too stupid to know that their sheer stupidity makes them too stupid to fulfill what they consider to be their most sacred mission — to tell the truth (parse that last sentence). Now that's just stupid.
By definition, stupid people are incapable of discerning the truthful from the untruthful. Stupid people lack the necessary reasoning ability, judgment and intellectual curiosity to do so. They're too stupid.
Because the average journalist is so stupid, I've learned to not take most of what they say or do or report too seriously. That's unlike many of my fellow conservatives who mistake the stupidity of most journalists for liberal bias. I have to work with journalists every day. Trust me, you're being much too kind when you accuse them of being liberal. They're stupid, that's all.
I can tell you that I have heard some amazingly stupid things in newsrooms during my career in journalism. But probably the stupidest thing I ever heard involved the Second Amendment.
I was working as a copy editor at a fair-sized Atlanta metropolitan newspaper. I don't want to name names but it was the Marietta Daily Journal (oops). One evening a reporter said to me, "You know, I hear a lot about the Second Amendment. People always get upset when they talk about it. What's it about any way?"
A blow to the solar plexus couldn't have been more alarming. I could not believe what this reporter, who, I assumed, made it through high school, college and at least one job interview, had asked me. The entire nation has been arguing about the meaning and scope of the Second Amendment for decades and she hadn't a clue what it encompassed. And this was in Georgia where when you're born they give you a .22 handgun and side holster (pink or blue, depending on your sex) as parting gifts from the maternity ward.
I don't even remember what answer I gave her. Knowing me it was something along the lines of "the right to wear tan shoes with pink shoelaces. Polka dot tie and man oh man."
Now I have nothing against the stupid. Many of my dearest friends are numbered among the intellectually bereft. I have family members who are as stupid as they come but who still manage to lead happy, fulfilling lives. We have great times whenever we get together.
But when stupid starts putting on airs it becomes quite annoying. And that's what most journalists do. They ramble on and on, saying the most stupid things, thinking that they are being so erudite and witty, and ... I think I need a Tums.
Normally, after I write a column, I email a copy to my colleagues in the newsroom. I don't think I'm going to do that this week. What, you think I'm stupid?
|Toogood Reports contributor and "Best of the Web" award-winning writer Perry Drake is a professional journalist in Plainfield, Ill. He is a great American conservative who writes with a unique perspective on the issues of the day. Perry is married and has two children. You can email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.|
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16 mar 2002