Indiana Daily Student

Ed Fitzmaurice

Comments about Christianity absurd

Comments about Christianity absurd I’m writing in regards to Steve Salter’s infantile “opinion” letter that was published in the Jordan River Forum on April 12, “Christian Easter an artificial holiday.” What I found particularly amusing, apart from its childish wordplay and atrocious scholarship, was the inherent hypocrisy of the letter itself and the alleged message. A few things first though. I can only assume that Mr. Salter has read one book on the issue of Jesus as a holy man. Perhaps two. “The Jesus Mysteries” is where he clearly draws the majority of his talking points, and possibly “Jesus the Magician” (though I doubt it). While I sympathize with his overall point, any competent historian will tell you that Freke and Gandy, the authors of “The Jesus Mysteries,” are not competent historians. I won’t even begin to discuss the intellectually insulting level of gross misunderstanding of history Mr. Salter shows. A piece of advice to Mr. Salter: Let we real historians handle these issues. Not somebody who has simply read the sorry excuse for history that is “The Jesus Mysteries.” On the whole, however, Mr. Salter is truly exceptional in his craft. Though his cunning use of words like “AmeriKKKa” and “primitive religion” he not only managed to insult at least one-third of the world’s population in rather offensive terms, but then proceeded to insult the majority of the other two-thirds by describing nearly all other major religions with the same brush. He then asked that we all “grow up” and advance “spiritually.” A truly brilliant stratagem. As an avowed agnostic, I must say that it is exactly the kind of spiritualism that Mr. Salter espouses that makes me take a step back and realize that if we all embrace each other, I’d have to be associated with people like Mr. Salter. No thanks. Ed Fitzmaurice Senior

Media concentrates on certain murders to make money

I’ve been tempted to write the IDS regarding Ayesha Awan’s columns before, but the March 2 column “The less important” really required some alternative analysis, particularly on its understanding of American media. It seems to me that Ms. Awan, as well as much of the United States, does not quite understand what the media is. The media is not an impartial judge that reports on items for their merit alone. Quite the contrary. The media is a business. They report on what will make them the most money. What will make people watch their programs over anybody else’s. She cites cases like Laci Peterson, Natalee Holloway and Chandra Levy, saying that the reason they received news coverage is because they are “white pretty princesses.” She conveniently ignores the media blitz that occurred around Erica Pratt in 2002, a 7-year-old African-American girl who chewed her way to freedom before anybody even knew she was gone. She also ignores the recent media frenzy over William Ownby and Shawn Hornbeck. That’s three examples against her hypothesis without even using the Internet. Coming back to the point, she fundamentally misunderstands why it is that the media reports certain cases. In the case of Levy, it was because a young intern on Capitol Hill disappeared, who happened to be having an affair with a congressman. That’s news regardless of sex, color or creed. Peterson – a young woman, 7 months pregnant, goes missing on Christmas? From suburbia, and her husband was cheating? That’s news. A girl goes missing in a popular spring break spot? For most parents in the world, that’s important news. But sadly, women and children going missing from a crime-riddled area is not news. It’s what happens in crime-riddled areas. It has nothing to do with the relative value of human life, nothing to do with newsworthiness. It all has to do with money. The media stands to make far more money off a nine-month drama ensuing from the Scott Peterson case than a two-day spectacle about a woman killed in Gary, Ind., that leads nowhere. And that difference, ladies and gentleman, is what will determine what we see in the news. Ed Fitzmaurice Senior

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