I’m going to be honest here. When Rolling Stone wants to discuss music and performers that are going on tour, they are one of the better music magazines out there. When they want to get on a soapbox and preach their message about [fill in the celebrity drenched cause celebre du jour here], I tune them out. If I want to watch political propaganda, I can watch MSNBC or Fox News. Rolling Stone has made a habit of being frightfully myopic at times with their choice of covers and the most current one astounds me.
Rolling Stone has chosen to profile Dzhokhar Tsarnaev on the cover. The young man who allegedly participated in the bombings of the Boston Marathon. Thousands of people have spoken out in outrage over the magazine’s coverage of this individual. The article is supposed to be an in-depth piece offering how a bright young kid could suddenly become a terrorist.
Never let it be said that Rolling Stone won’t bleed it’s particular form of journalism with out offering some form of defense. Editors for the magazine released a statement shortly after they realized what sort of public relations firestorm they unleashed upon themselves. On a side note, my eleven year subscription to the magazine was cancelled yesterday.
“Our hearts go out to the victims of the Boston Marathon bombing, (only because we got caught pandering our opinion in poor taste and at a bad time.)and our thoughts are always with them and their families. The cover story we are publishing this week falls within the traditions of journalism and Rolling Stone’s long-standing commitment to serious and thoughtful coverage of the most important(in our opinion, because we believe we don’t just push music, but prostitute our own agenda for money.) political and cultural issues of our day. The fact that Dzhokhar Tsarnaev is young, (and of an appropriate philosophical bend that we approve of.)and in the same age group as many of our readers, makes it all the more important for us to examine the complexities(more pandering for dollars) of this issue and gain a more complete understanding of how a tragedy like this happens.”
We all remember what happened, and we remember how the Boston Bruins were the first team that the city could lean on to help them through this tragedy. Players like Andrew Ference and Shawn Thornton took point on helping the city recover (Ference’s wife and children were very close to the attacks when they happened.) The team as a whole stood up and helped the city heal. In all that pain and grief the Bruins organization helped us become and remain ‘Boston Strong’. It also led to one of the finest performances of the national anthem ever.
The Bruins led the way to help in any way they could. Players like Brad Marchand donated their box in a raffle that generated nearly a quarter of a million dollars. The NHL followed Boston’s lead players from all over the league pitched in and helped where they could. Players from Massachusetts and Manitoba, Charleston and the Czech Republic came together to help a hurt city rise up and be proud again. That Rolling Stone would attempt to use this in order to sell magazines around the world is nauseating.
Boston’s mayor Thomas Menino was just as incensed as I am. He sums up the opinion of a lot of New Englanders and Americans in general. He is absolutely right, Rolling Stone no longer deserves the readership of those who were hurt, and those who rose up and ran into chaos to help them.