Reporters who don’t read the news

If you were a reporter, wouldn’t you feel it necessary to actually be somewhat familiar with current events? I don’t mean memorizing everything around the world, but maybe learn at  least the basics of the story you are supposedly investigating?

Recently, a video reporter for the TMZ website tried an ambush interview with Republican presidential candidate Marco Rubio at an airport. Did he ask about politics, foreign policy, or economics? You know; the sort of things presidents actually are responsible for? No way. He asked about Cecil the Lion, no doubt hoping for a sensational or controversial response from the ambushed candidate. Now neither Rubio nor any other candidate has any special knowledge or insight into the event, and, as president, would almost certainly never deal with it, so there is no earthly reason their opinion should be sought. Of course, reporters can ask what they like, no matter how idiotic. But at least they should have a nodding acquaintance with the background.

The reporter asked Rubio about Cecil the Tiger. It would have been wonderful if Rubio had said “He’s grrrrrreat!”, but he went along, gently correcting the idea that Cecil the Lion was a tiger.

Well, just a slip of the tongue, right? Sorry, there is no excuse for so basic a mistake. None.

Thousands of articles have been written about this incident in the last week or so, and every one used the word lion to describe the animal in question. I am not aware of any that ever used the word tiger. And even if every article had mistakenly claimed Cecil was a tiger anyone with a basic education should have known this was impossible. The only way to kill a tiger in Africa would be to go hunting in a zoo, because tigers live in India and Southeast Asia, not Africa.

Yet the reporter asked about Cecil the Tiger.

Where do they find these guys? Are they capable of shame?

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