1.6/11  Cork Strikes Again - McVeigh

From:    ka2cxj@webtv.net
Date:    Mon, Jun 11, 2001, 7:18pm (PDT+3)
To:    newsfeed@webtv.net, normtaka@webtv.net
Subject:    Cork Strikes Again

Delivered-To:    ka2cxj@mailsorter-bryant.bryant.webtv.net
From:    ka2cxj@webtv.net
Date:    Mon, Jun 11, 2001, 7:15pm (PDT+3)
To:    ka2cxj@webtv.net
Subject:    Cork Strikes Again

From: John Corcoran
Pesky Gadabout, Los Angeles & The World


RE: McVeigh, what else?

I was out of town this weekend. Was there any coverage of the McVeigh execution?
I kid, of course. This weekend, my fingers flew over the remote trying to avoid this latest Media Circus, the crucifixion/martyrdom/ emotion wallowing wall-to-wall coverage of the execution of a mass murderer. How ubiquitous was It? I may have dozed off, but I think "TV Land" re-looped a Dick Van Dyke Show. When Laura Petrie was on a quiz show she was asked: "Does Allan Brady wear his toupee around the house?" and "Are you in for or against the execution of Timothy McVeigh?" And I'm almost positive I saw Tim McVeigh's name etched on the Stanley Cup. One shudders to think how bad it might have been had the execution taken place during sweeps.
Broadcasters are asking for the right to televise executions. No. No! A million times NO!. The shameless, often irresponsible feeding frenzy that occurs over "events" like McVeigh's execution prove that TV news isn't mature enough to be handed that responsibility. Unlike most individuals coming of age, the industry reached Maturity, then gave it away. Perhaps "sold it out for ratings" is a better term. And don't tell me this excessive coverage was a tribute to the suffering of survivors, or friends and relatives of the killer's victims. I do not believe they were served by this orgy. How sad for them--and us--to have to listen to a self-serving McVeigh attorney explain and interpret his client's state of mind. When McVeigh writes "sorry," the attorney says McVeigh means he's "sorry" some of his murder victims were casualties, sorta like innocent civilian victims of war. Take your pop-psych mumbo-jumbo, counselor, and stuff i... I mean save it for your book.   I suspect much of the over coverage of McVeigh was driven by "fear of what the competition might do" rather than by news sense. TV loves its rights, but falls short in the responsibility department. TV demanded and got the right to cover many criminal trials live. When done responsibly, that may prove good and educational. But sure enough, Court TV recently broadcast the names, faces and voices of young teenagers testifying in a first degree murder trial. Legal? I guess. But dangerous, methinks. How does a 14 year-old behave knowing his or her answers are being broadcast nationally? Might it not effect their thinking process, or what they say or how they say it? Should stage fright or the desire to extend one's 15 minutes of fame be a factor in trials where the defendant may be sentenced to life in prison or death?