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A HIDDEN LIFE

March 4, 2013

1. The state or condition of being free from being observed or disturbed by other people.  If you are a public official it is sad to say, but you really don’t have privacy.  There will always be someone trying to dig up skeletons from your past.  I feel like no matter what, people make mistakes and also deserve the right to privacy.  Everyone needs to have a private life outside of their career.  If you are a public figure, you do have more responsibilities and have a duty to do, which gives you a disadvantage in the private life.

2. I believe that the role of the media in a democratic society is to draw attention to even the smallest problems.  They like to over dramatize everything and make people look bad.  Yes there are some positives to the media, but I feel like they mainly use it to show a negative side of our society.

3. Editor Steven Smith said that if Mayor Jim West was interested and trying to pursue underage boys there would be a story, but if not there is no story.  This is a very strong statement.  I also believe that no matter what the investigators would have found out, they still would have created a story.  If West wasn’t interested in underage boys it still would have kicked off a story because West turned out to be a homosexual.  The media always makes a big deal out of people being gay.   Mr. Smith has a point because it is in the communities best interest to know whether or not that their mayor is trying to put the moves on a minor.  The story will then become more important and cause a bigger scene once Jim West becomes proven guilty.

4. Bill Morlin claimed that they had to investigate because if the Mayor was guilty of molesting underage boys, the community should be notified.  Morlin pretty much said that he didn’t want to have the guilt of doing what the investigators did.  If someone else did the dirty work then he wouldn’t feel as bad about it.

5. The only time that I believe a “sting operation” is appropriate is if there are high suspicions of a guilty person.  If there are harmful circumstances that involve innocent people, and if a public figure is lying or hiding a secret life.  The protection of innocent people is very important and should be a top priority at all times.

6. I believe that the Spokesman-Review published so many articles because it was such a big story.  Here we have a Mayor and a well-known public figure who was accused of molesting little boys, chatting on an online dating site called Gay.com, and offering young men  jobs in political areas.  There were many things that popularized this story.

7. Mayor West is not a sympathetic character.  Yes I feel bad that he can’t really have a private life because everyone keeps trying to investigate him, BUT he is also a public figure that has a job to do.  He chose that life, and molesting little boys and trying to get them jobs illegally is not part of his job description.  He should have been a lot more careful and covered his tracks a little bit better.

8. The Spokesman-Review benefited because they got a lot of publicity from “A Hidden Life.”  Mayor West’s life was completely ruined from the whole thing.  His true colors were revealed and his career was then shot to hell from all of the negative publicity. “A Hidden Life” showed the secret life of Mayor West that no one knew he lead.  The citizens of Spokane, Wash. were probably very disturbed and betrayed by the Hidden Life of Mayor West.  I’m sure that they were thankful that the story revealed the real Mayor West.

9. I feel like the community benefited from the Spokesman-Review because they are now aware of who their Mayor really is.  The person who was hurt the most was Mayor West because his reputation was completely ruined because of all the things that were revealed about him and his personal life.  I do believe that the outcome was worth it to an extent.  Mayor West was completely hurt and ruined by these random people and he was cornered by all these investigators.  I think that the outcome was worth it, but I also think that they could have gone about the whole situation with a different approach.  They could have confronted him and didn’t have to make it as public as they did.

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One Comment
  1. Do you think hiring the third party to create an identity on gay.com addressed the paper’s ethical obligations?

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