Letters: “Put the journalist back into journalism”
May I say your thoughtful writing and editorial integrity is so refreshing. As a career journalist who got his start in the 1970s, when great journalism was taking off, I was appalled by the decline of our profession.
The newspapers that I once revered and admired – the Washington Post, the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, to name a few – now fill their pages and online platforms with articles filled with editorial commentary. Writers often appear on TV talk shows and praise their “hard-hitting” journalistic skills. They promote their books and their “brands”.
There was a time when journalists recoiled at the thought of being part of any story they were writing or receiving public praise from print or television personalities for their work. The only recognition they wanted for good work was from their editors, their press associations, or the Pulitzer Committee. Work was its own reward.
Thank you for putting the journalist back in journalism. Your articles are balanced and factual. You present both sides as they should, without fanfare, bias or passion. You report the news. My God, what a concept! You let readers draw their own conclusions. Unbelievable! While one major newspaper after another has lowered its standards of journalistic integrity, The Christian Science Monitor remains a beacon on a hill, shining light and truth on a world that desperately needs both.
Thank you from the bottom of my tired heart. You give me hope. When I find myself sinking into despair, your writing lifts me up to the light.
Asheville, North Carolina
Over the decades
I have just finished rereading Commitment to Freedom: The Story of The Christian Science Monitor by Erwin D. Canham, published in 1958. The book covers the history of The Christian Science Monitor from 1908 to 1957, as well as a record of world news history at that time.
Growing up with the Monitor newspaper delivered daily, I recognized many names of signatures and correspondents in the book, and it brought back happy reading days.
I particularly liked John Gould and John Allen May from the Family Features page, and their witty writing. And oh, the comics – “The Diary of Snubs, Our Dog”, “The Adventures of Waddles” and my favorite, “Tubby and Buddy” by Guernsey LePelley, which I couldn’t wait to read myself, looking at the drawings until so that I can read for myself.
Much of my education came from reading the Monitor news, as well as the sports and arts pages, which included updates on Broadway plays, ballets, books and entertainment.
The Monitor launched my own writing career. When I was 16, I wrote about my experience modeling on “live” television in Los Angeles circa 1949. Television was very new and I was thrilled when the Monitor accepted my story and paid for it – I think $15!
I continued to write teaching materials for supplication reading in schools, then I wrote freelance for books and magazines – including for the Monitor’s Home Forum page and its metaphysical articles.
Over the years the monitor has taken on several new looks – I guess these are the signs of the times. I am grateful that the magazine is still delivered to my house, now once a week. And I’m happy to share it with my courier, who thanks me.
Newport Beach, California