October 8, 2009

In Your Voice

I don't subscribe to a newspaper. Instead I choose to read it for free online. The Star Press is the local newspaper in Muncie, and at the bottom of every article is "In Your Voice". An opportunity for readers like me to comment on the above story.

Now I suppose some of you utilize this area to voice your opinions or thoughts on the article, and after all that is your First Amendment right to do so. But I for one, despise this forum.

Let's take a look at a few examples.

In today's paper a 27 year old was sentenced to 24 years in prison for having sex with a teenager. The man is engaged and has a child. The classy headline reads. "Sex Criminal: 'I am not that monster'". Now is this newsworthy and relevant, I'd say yes. The public needs to know the system is working. Will we all form opinions from reading this? Absolutely! Should those thoughts and opinions be shared with others? Well...you'll have to answer that one for yourself, but personally I might share my thoughts with my closest friends if it were necessary, but don't worry about finding me standing on a street corner with a bullhorn proclaiming, "CASTRATE HIM!"

Yet 26 individuals chose to comment on this article.
The first comment says "shame on the fiancee for seeing nothing wrong with what he did" (because they're perfect)
The next proclaims "HE IS A MONSTER!" (what a brave soul)
Next someone questions the facts of the case (yeah because they were there)
A series of posts blames the mother (she clearly forced her son to have sex with a teen)
Another mother then posts that if this man ever knocked on her door for her daughter that the next day the headline would read "Mother kills Man!" (Nice!)
The remaining 20 posts range from problems with the system to justification for the crime; from let's hold a public execution to somehow this is the Democrats fault! WHAT?

OK, so I admit this was a high profile case in town, I even knew someone on the jury, so I can understand some strong feelings come to the surface, especially being a father, but let's go to a slightly less serious issue...

"Muncie Streets to get Sweet Salt this Winter"

This article garnered 17 posted comments in the same amount of time.
Naturally, half of them were apparently meteorologists because I read everything from the farmer's almanac to global warming to someone who has a dog that "acts funny" during storms. And then of course there were the expected city budget concerns and...you guessed it...Democrats!!

So what did I learn from reading the comments today, everything from sex with teens to snowfall is the fault of the democrats. Seriously? I refuse to waste another minute on these forums. I appreciate the news, when it is news, and when they report the facts. But I'd prefer to create my own opinions and in most cases keep them to myself. I certainly don't need to hear what everyone else thinks, and I will NEVER have the need to share my thoughts in such a cowardly way. If you're not willing to shout it from the rooftops then don't put it in a public forum. And do your mind a favor, stop reading this filth.

I ADVISE U to never post a comment in these forums, and furthermore I ADVISE U to stop reading them!!


  1. but they're SOOOOO entertaining!!!!!! :)

  2. oh, the newspaper in our last town had a rants and raves column and I HATED IT! (right on the front page too!) It was so negative, rude, and degrading in so many ways. I don't really care what everyone in town was thinking...we stopped subscribing because of it actually. (Half the time the comments were misspelled, had horrible grammar and were based on pretty ignorant views.)
    (by the way, I am good friends with Lee and Brian...just so you know I am not some random lurker!)