Not much has been going on other than that Steve and I argued about abortion — in light of the Super Bowl ad — a bunch. Obviously, since we are on the same side of “the issue” and almost completely, totally agree, the argument lasted two days.
Then, I got bored, so I tried to pick an argument with Brian too.
Totally awesome strategies for arguing that are sure not to piss people off and will definitely win the day:
-call everyone a “moron”
-swear a lot
-tell someone that they should “try to show just a little critical thinking and media literacy”
Yes, I did use the phrase “media literacy.” Ugh.
Speaking of the media (nice transition, nice!), I think I may have actually made my first difference as a journalist.
Nearly a year ago, when I first started covering my beat, a bunch of towns got F grades from Smoke-Free Marin for not doing enough to stop second-hand smoke. The one town I cover blew it off; I believe a phrase used was “anti-smoking Nazis.” They said that banning smoking in apartment complexes was dumb and its the people’s choice and not the role of the government, etc.
I wrote an article reporting what they said (transparency, people should know what their elected officials say and do, and all that) and their arguments against banning smoking in multi-unit apartment buildings. I also wrote about why towns do pass ordinances banning smoking in multi-unit buildings. [Essentially, if you share a hallway or an air ventilation system in a large building and someone’s smoking in their own apartment they might as well be smoking in yours, and you wouldn’t even know it. And the proximity of windows and patios in densely packed apartment complexes makes it impossible to say one person’s air is separate from another person’s.]
Now, what they choose to do with this information is a question for the elected officials and the public of that town. But, they should at least have all the information.
The next meeting, one of the councilmembers said that he had learned some new information from the newspaper (yay! that’s what newspapers are for!) and wanted to reconsider the issue.
Last night, they introduced the idea of some kind of a ban on smoking inside multi-unit apartment complexes. There will be a public meeting to gather input and consider the issue.
Because I wrote something that informed and educated people. I think that’s how this shit is supposed to work.