View From The Glen

Friday, August 31, 2012

All the news fit to print....

Because I am a former journalist and newspaper editor, friends often ask me why I don't blog about current events or hot-topic issues. It's true that with a few exceptions, I use this blog more as a personal journal than as a forum for analysis, and it is heavy with references to the kids and our activities. Even those exceptions tend to be issues that affect us directly, like the zero-grade controversy that rocked educational circles earlier this year (this links to my original response but I should note that I have modified my opinion slightly over the subsequent months).

Partly, it's because this blog is for friends and family scattered over the globe and they are far more interested in what we've been up to on the soccer field or the lake than they are interested in my ranting on one subject or another.
Ottawa Citizen
Partly it's because the news depresses me, and when I blog I don't want to be depressed. I'm usually at the keyboard in the evening or in between projects as well, and responding to news in a way that would be unbiased and informed and well-thought-out frankly takes a great deal more time and effort than I am willing to give. In general I find the state of journalism sad these days and find there is too much reliance on sound bites and opinion rather than factual reporting or even deep editorial commentary. If I write as a reporter, I am not going to do a half-arsed job of it.

The Globe and Mail

Partly it's because I want the freedom to say words like arsed without worrying about offending someone. And I don't really want to invite the comment trolls (the ones I see on news sites make me despair for humanity) into my life.

National Post
But sometimes I wish I did more analysis. Every day I read a variety of news sources (and am amazed how important a source of information Twitter has become for me - with links to all sorts of incredible things), and every day there are things I want to say or could say. There are so many stories I am passionate about...some of the key stories that have stood out for me recently are pictured throughout this post. Being a writer means I think best with a keyboard and that's usually how I formulate opinions. If I don't have the opportunity to write about an issue, when something comes up in conversation (like it invariably does at book club) I end up feeling like I am merely ranting, rather than putting forward intelligent and thoughtful ideas.


I made a conscious decision to keep this blog light because I don't believe I can do some of the big stories justice in the short window I have to draft blog posts.
It doesn't mean I don't have an opinion. If you want my thoughts on politics, philosophy, education, religion, or cultural mores, you just have to ask. Preferably while you hand me a glass of wine...if I don't have a keyboard, it's the next best thing!

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