Letters to the Editor

'Responsible journalism'

I have expressed my deepest condolences to the family and friends of the Virginia Tech victims. I cannot imagine the scope of their loss and suffering. I honestly believe America would never do anything to add to their suffering, but indirectly we did. The news media did.

The media should have kept these folks in their hearts and minds rather than following their credo, "If it bleeds, it leads." Truly sympathetic journalists would never broadcast the videos or manifesto of Seung-Hui Cho. Instead, the media has given this guy exactly what he wanted: immortality and notoriety.

What did we gain from the decision to release these videos, pictures and written trash? Broadcasting his videos did nothing but pour salt on the wounds of the survivors and did nothing positive for the investigation, the global community or the American people.

We desperately need to redefine what we consider to be responsible journalism. Otherwise, every psycho out there will be guaranteed worldwide, front-page, headline news coverage. In effect we're telling the next madman: the more heinous the crime, the more attention.

Michael Kobata

Fresno

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