brokenclay.org/journal

Deconstruction of the News

Here are two goofy news items that caught my attention:

SUV driver knocks down woman in wheelchair in a parking lot
Wheelchair-Bound Man Suspected Of Shooting Wife As She Drove

Let’s look at these in a little more detail:

CLEARFIELD “? Clearfield police don’t know why a 64-year-old woman in a wheelchair was in a parking lot Monday evening.
But they do know the driver of a sport utility vehicle didn’t see her when he put the SUV into reverse, said Greg Krusi, Clearfield assistant police chief.
The impact knocked the woman down and out of her chair. She complained of pain to her whole body and was taken to Davis Hospital.

What is the purpose of the first sentence? Why is anybody ever in a parking lot? Is it somehow the woman’s fault she was hit—as if she had no business being in the parking lot?

SAN DIEGO — A 45-year-old wheelchair-bound man was arrested on suspicion of wounding his wife by firing two gunshots into her chest as she drove on Interstate 5 in Clairemont Mesa, San Diego police said Thursday.

Riding with his wife in a van, the man pulled a small-caliber handgun and fired on her as she drove on the southbound I-5 near Balboa Avenue just before 5 p.m. Wednesday, Sgt. Rich Nemetz said.

The woman pulled off the freeway and drove to the 4300 block of Berwick Drive, where a passer-by called police, Nemetz said.

The woman was taken to a San Diego hospital, where she was treated for two gunshot wounds to her chest, Nemetz said. She is expected to survive.

The man, who is paralyzed from the waist down, was arrested, Nemetz said.

The couple, whose names were not released, had apparently gotten into an argument just before the shooting, Nemetz said. It was unclear what they were arguing about.

Here, the wheelchair/paralysis appear to have absolutely nothing to do with the story. Why didn’t they tell us how tall the man is? His hair color? His skin color? His taste in music? Maybe we’re supposed to be amazed that a man who uses a wheelchair is capable of a) being in a car and b) holding a gun.

Where is journalism school when you need it?

Katja

1 Comment

  1. mdmhvonpa

    Hey, where is all the other important detail! Were they right handed or left? Blue eyes or brown? Blond hair, black, bald? White, black, asian, latino. Christian, jewish or muslim (etc…) I mean, if being confined to a wheel chair is important, is not the rest of this?

    Reply

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