As Bad As That Bus Monitor Video Is…

…the editorial from the local newspaper about it might actually be worse.

The paper in question, the Rochester Democrat and Chronice (owned by Gannett), had this today…

As this page has pointed out for years, our culture is in a state of decline in terms of entertainment, politics and public discourse. Parents, all adults, must stand up to crass behavior and set an example for our children, and for one another.

There’s plenty of such behavior to stand up to. Just in the past few days: A journalist for a conservative-leaning website interrupts President Obama during a Rose Garden speech. Actor Alec Baldwin roughs up a Daily News photographer. Musicians Drake and Chris Brown turn a Manhattan nightclub into a battleground after their foul-mouthed back-and-forth over former girlfriend Rihanna ignites a brawl.

Worse: Rather than paying for their bad behavior; they are celebrated. Baldwin remains a popular actor and celebrity endorser. Brown, who has a track record of violent behavior, was invited to perform on the Grammys this year. The Rose Garden reporter’s boss said his minion deserves a raise.

Oscar had our initial piece on the video and the aftermath of it here. Watching that video you certainly can’t disagree with the idea that our culture is in a tailspin. That part the editors had right.

But the examples the paper uses? That’s the best they can do? Neil Munro jumping the gun on an aggressive Sam Donaldson-style question to Obama as he escapes from a questionless press conference? Alec Baldwin tussling with paparazzi?

Yes, Chris Brown is a good example of the coarsening of the culture. Chris Brown is a scumbag. The editorial is one for three.

Neil Munro’s attempt to question the president isn’t an example of that. Reporters shout questions at politicians all the time, and have done so for decades.

Why didn’t Bill Maher come into play? Bill Maher just said Allen West is the leader of the Party Of The Apes. He calls women he disagrees with the “c” word all the time. Bill Maher continues to have a show on a major cable network. That’s not a better example of the coarsening of the culture than Neil Munro or Alec Baldwin?

How about Jersey Shore? How about the Kardashians? How about the beating of newspaper reporters in Norfolk by a gang of feral kids? Or the mayhem in Chicago’s slums?

Neil Munro and Alec Baldwin are our cultural decline in technicolor? If that’s the worst we can find, we’re not in anything like the shape we seem to be.

And the fact that the editors of a medium-sized newspaper don’t seem to have a clue about real problems says even more about our decline – or our ability to fix it.



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