Maybe I wigged out a bit about KSTP’s story of a two-year old girl drowning at an Elk River campsite. Maybe I didn’t. I’m sticking with my opinion either way.
I understand that telling the news is about telling a story, but I think my tolerance for the melodrama has reached its limit. Newscasters are almost comical in their performance, shifting easily from phony grave concern to skippy enthusiasm with the turn of a cue card.
But too often that performance involves children dealing with tragedy whether the children are held in the arms of a distraught parent being interviewed by a reporter or the children themselves being put before the microphone.
The trauma is bad enough. I doubt it is good for kids to be put under the added stress of media coverage, especially staged as props in a story. It seems exploitive and manipulative. More importantly, it adds a layer to the experience that isn’t necessarily genuine.
Can some joker reporter know how a child is dealing with a tragedy? It could be the case that the kid is coping well, but then sees adults falling apart and the child in turn starts to rethink and re-experience the event. All for the camera.
Let kids be kids. Show them some respect. Meanwhile adults should try to get a grip. A very young girl drowned in a river. It is a sad story. Respect it. Stick to the facts.
- KSTP Producing Drama to Hype Local News (alittletourinyellow.wordpress.com)