August - Journalists are Not the enemy #FreePress
Journalists are Not the enemy
One Step Away, Pennsylvania:
Vendor Voices, the importance of street Papers
Q: Why is it important to have a street paper?
A: Viable channels with high-caliber, high-ethics journalism with little influence of money or politics on the message are clearly needed. Clear, open channels for voices from the community to be efficiently disseminated seems to be the original intention of the Founding Fathers and what a healthy future needs from us today.
The timing of this topic, given the revelations from Pittsburgh and Harrisburg regarding decades of suppressed voices, shows the importance of journalism. Should there be outlets strictly focused on religious communities, seminaries, universities, other closed/semi-closed communities, etc.? Would the destructive force of such scandals, which destroy credibility and character and communities, be lessened had there been healthy, viable channels for the people experiencing the dysfunction of those institutions to get their voices heard?
Q: What effect does One Step Away have in your life? In the community?
A: Besides benefitting economically from being an OSA vendor, the existence of One Step Away motivates me to think of new ways to engage the audience, both those who donate and those who merely smile as they walk past. One Step Away serves as a focal point to consider the larger picture of public engagement in the busy lives most American’s lead today.
Q: What can communities, media, the public do differently to get people’s voices heard?
A: I see the solution to that question as the interplay of the economics of time, effort, money, and value.
Communities must choose to support robust systems which embody the value of those voices. If the individual can’t commit the time and effort to the task themselves, pay someone else to do it. If everyone pays a bit, it is not a burden to most individuals and everyone benefits. Paying into a healthy, vibrant, robust media ecosystem, as opposed to the polarized system we witness operating today, is like paying into an insurance policy or paying for a local fire department: when it is your turn to need your voice heard, it is there for you.
Clearly, society in general, and organizations in particular, are damaged when dysfunction in one corner is unknown to the larger group, again as illustrated this week from Pittsburgh & Harrisburg in this latest installment in a disgraceful, multi-decade drama.
People’s voices need to be heard, and there need to be legitimate platforms provided so that our most vulnerable members of society do not get silenced.
All articles appeared on the original press websites and were compiled by The Boston Globe’s We Are Not The Enemy project. Special thank you to all our fellow journalists, news outlets, and reporters.
Thank you, everyone, who supports One Step Away, and other local media. Your support helps our voices get heard and provides meaningful income and personal growth opportunities for those in need.