Thursday, December 18, 2008

Let the Herald do its job

On December 13th the Monterey Herald ran two contrasting stories. One was about a local family facing hard times and living in a motel. The other was about a lady in Southern California who spent $20,000 to build a mini Victorian mansion in her back yard for her doggies Chelsea and Coco Puff.

The clear lines between need and excess prompted four local women to write letters to the Herald expressing their justified dismay about the dog house. All well and good, so far.

However, two of these women went as far as to say that the Herald shouldn't have even printed the dog house story. One called the article a "slap in the face" to local residents and asked "Did you have a purpose in printing the article or did you just not think?" The other was even more direct and simply said the article shouldn't have been printed in the Herald.

Why not? Is it the job of the Herald to only print politically correct stories? Or is it the paper's job to tell people what is going on in the world?

By printing the dog house story, the Herald was not advocating excess. The paper was doing what it is supposed to do - show us the world as it is. Sometimes it tells stories that are heartbreaking, some are heartwarming, and some are just plain crazy.

If the Herald had not run the story, how would anyone know that $20,000 is going to the dogs? If you don't know about excessive lifestyles, how can they be denounced?

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