Check out this fascinating article in the New York Times about corruption and political oppression in the burgeoning Chinese news media industry. It ends on this hopeful note:
Even as they acknowledge the industry’s low repute and the dangers that often accompany their jobs, many journalists said they would stick with the profession, which they see as the best hope for their country’s peaceful development.
Fan Youfeng, 38, a reporter with the Hebei Youth Daily, was chased out of Henan Province after uncovering a scandal involving the handling of a coal mining disaster there.
“I’ve already paid a high price for this job,” he said, recounting how he had been forced to flee his previous newspaper. Asked what he would do if his investigative work made him a target again, he said: “It doesn’t matter. China is big, and there’s got to be a place for someone with a conscience.”
Kind of puts things in perspective. Sure, we have our Arkins, but even outrageous bias and ignorance pales in comparison to systematic bribery and blackmail. Our friends on the left side of the blogosphere could benefit from a little perspective, too. How about sending a copy of this article to the next one who goes off on a “Bush’s war on the press” jag?