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NOTE TO FELLOW REPORTERS: LET’S NOT VICTIMIZE LARA LOGAN A SECOND TIME

Lara Logan in Tahrir Square shortly before her attack

First, my beef today with some of the newsies: one had to resign after tweeting Lara Logan was trying to one-up Anderson Cooper, another says she and CBS were “complicit in a news cover-up.”  Others have noted “something fishy” in her lack of details.

My guess is whatever veteran war correspondent Lara Logan is going to do or say, it won’t quite fit what some news people expect of her. Despite the trauma, the physical and psychic pain of a “brutal and sustained sexual assault,  her news peers (and I use the term loosely) now are now examining the handling of her own horrific story. Shame on those who dare to judge her or CBS.

In today’s Boston Herald.com, columnist Michael Graham takes her and her network to task:

“Five days of silence — not even “60 Minutes” coverage of the Egypt story. No mention of the “mob of more than 200 people whipped into frenzy” who attacked their own reporter.

“How is that not news? adding, “I’m with liberal columnist Richard Cohen of The Washington Post,” who wrote, “The sexual assault of a woman in the middle of a public square is a story  . . .  particularly because the crowd in Tahrir Square was almost invariably characterized as friendly and out for nothing but democracy,” Cohen wrote.

“Watching the same complicit media we all saw, Cohen notes most journalists covered the mobs “as if they were reporting from Times Square on New Year’s Eve, stopping only at putting on a party hat.”

I agree with Cohen that most journalists covered the mobs as if they were reporting from Times Square on New Year’s Eve.  (see daily Xpress February 6th,  “…This isn’t Woodstock.)

But these are two separate issues;  Lara Logan’s personal trauma is her personal story and it’s up to her when, how and if she ever wants to discuss it.

IT’S NOT TOO LATE , MICHAEL GRAHAM, TO LEARN HOW TO BEST REPORT ON SEXUAL ASSAULT CRIMES

So who is Michael Graham and why is he weighing in?   Is he dedicated to upholding journalism standards?  Is he an advocate for women’s rights?  Has he been a part of an advanced dialog on the reporting of rape before now?

No! Michael Graham is a radio talk show host and it looks like this is his first op ed article on any of this.  During the past month, while democracy was painfully birthing in Egypt, Graham wrote about Obama’s budget cuts, the Boston mayor’s “jihad” on Wal-Mart, and how his driveway looks like an amateur luge course.  So I guess I have to ask why  Matt Drudge  linked to it high up on our daily news bible?

It would be different if Michael Graham, or any of the current critics, bothered to note the irony of the CBS Logan report appearing on the same day that a landmark federal lawsuit was filed in U.S. District Court in Alexandria, Va., accusing our own Department of Defense of allowing a military culture that not only fails to prevent rape and sexual assaults, but often promotes the perpetrators of those crimes.

Which brings me back to my note to President Obama, our commander in chief. Read the rest of this entry »

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