In case you missed it, The Boston Globe published two tremendous pieces of accountability journalism on Sunday:
- Jenna Russell and Jessica Rinaldi reported on the Hingham Police Department’s massive — and questionable — response to the home of a suicidal young man whose distraught parents had said was suicidal. Despite the parents’ pleas to back off, the police went all-in. And Austin Reeves, 26, ended up dead, most likely by his own hand.
- The Spotlight Team found that the Veterans Administration hospital in Manchester, New Hampshire, was providing terrible care, with flies in an operating room, blood or rust on surgical instruments, and such poor treatment of veterans with spinal injuries that they ended up permanently disabled even though their conditions could have been corrected by surgery. Two officials have already been removed because of the Globe’s reporting.
I point these out because this is important work that simply wouldn’t otherwise be done at the regional level. The national media — especially The Washington Post and The New York Times — are doing an outstanding job of holding President Trump to account and digging into the Republicans’ various proposal to dismantle the Affordable Care Act. In such an environment, it’s vital that we not overlook what’s happening in our backyard.
Advertising will never pay the bills for journalism to the same extent that it did before rise of the internet. If we’re not willing to pay, we’re going to lose the watchdog function that journalism plays in a democracy. We pay for a number of local and national news sources, including the Globe and the Boston Herald, and I hope that you do, too.