For those who don’t know, Marv Bossart was a news anchor here for many years. He was also one of my professors at Moorhead State. Long after I’d given up my theatre dreams (because I honestly couldn’t stand to be looked at after I was raped), I changed my major to Mass Communications. For some reason, I felt that (and still feel) that proper communication would basically solve nearly every big, hairy problem.
I wanted to be a writer–a news writer–a communicator. I wanted to bridge the gap between everyone that hated everyone for no reason other than ignorance. I don’t mean ignorance as an insult here. I simply mean that people have a tendency to form opinions of other people they know nothing about-and the media plays a large role in public opinion.
Marv asked me where my interest was in Mass Comm; I told him I wanted to write-the truth. I said I thought the truth was the thing that journalists needed to focus on. He told me that was wonderful. He said never to give up that dream. Then, he stared off into space a while and said, “everyone wants broadcasting now. They want to be in front of the camera. So, please, keep writing the truth.”
He also said news was for sale now. Journalism was on the brink of extinction. All journalists (except the freelancers) are on someone’s payroll. It isn’t what it used to be.
I never got into journalism. I’m about truth and honesty. No one can pay me to slant anything their way.
It wasn’t just Marv who brought me to this conclusion. It was being in an apartment fire that became a big news story. It was handled for shock value; sensationalism. I wasn’t even in the apartment at the time and yet the media was reporting a woman with my description as dead.
The woman who died caused the fire. At the time, she was 16 years older than me, but they didn’t seem to care about truth or facts. They wanted viewers/readers. I decided I couldn’t be a journalist on a payroll. And I told Marv. And he said, “just never stop.”
I stopped to earn a living for a long time. I stopped because I couldn’t report truth if I was on a payroll. So, now, I tell truths. Mine and those that relate. It doesn’t pay well monetarily, but it pays my soul.
That’s all. Thanks Marv.