Who Polices the Media, Feels Good to Be Useful, and Thanks for Coming to Our Country

Wow! An amazing week where I travelled nowhere! I was in the Live Free or Die state all week and that is where I bring you “TK Thoughts of the Week”:

  1. Yet another police shooting made the news this week and the fallout of the video from it caused riots and unrest in North Carolina. I have written a great deal about the issues on all sides of this troubling problem in our country. But this week, I want to spend a few sentences on what role media (of all kinds) plays in making this issue worse not better. The story in NC on the surface is all very bad. “An unarmed African-American man was gunned down by police while reaching for a book.” That was the immediate headline I saw. This headline and subsequent short clip video lead to the community violence. The issue is that there was no due diligence of this situation and the police department (NOTE: lead by an African American man) seems to think that there is a much bigger story to this particular situation. I don’t want to rehash my thoughts on all of the police violence in our country. From all angles, I have written about my high levels of disgust at the entire situation. But I do have a question, if this situation and the full video evidence tells a different story than the immediate clip, does the media have some level of guilt for the subsequent community unrest?
  2. This week I was asked by someone to meet with them and work through a tricky personal problem they were having. After the meeting, it was amazing how wonderful it felt to be helpful to a person who was both appreciative of my thought. It was great to be able to know I was truly transformative for at least one person this week.
  3. This is a carryover from last week but it was important to me so I wanted to share it. Last week, I took an Uber ride while I was in Baltimore. I almost always strike up conversations with my Uber drivers, and in this case, I chatted with Tsega. He was originally from Ethiopia and had been driving for the last 4 months with Uber. He came from Ethiopia after being separated from his mother for over 12 years. In addition to driving, he also was taking classes at a community college. When I asked him what he likes about being here, he said, “Everything!” He said he loved that he can work hard and go to school and that opportunities like Uber where there for him. As the ride ended, I said to Tsega, “Thanks for coming to our country.” His journey, his efforts, and his enthusiasm are exactly what we were built to be an opportunity for. By allowing folks like Tsega a way to come here, they not only have chances to get better, they make all of us better. When you get a chance today, thank an immigrant who decided to come here and be part of our story.

May your weekend be filled with fast horses, lots of smiles, and a touch of bourbon.