Well Known Religious Reporters Moving To Other Topics.

People who write for newspapers are not secure in their jobs these days.  Everyone who follows the newspaper business knows the circulation and ad revenues are declining.

If you were a writer reporting on religion, you might wonder if maybe religion will be the next thing on the chopping block.  According to the link below, several of the nations longest serving writers on religion have moved to other parts of journalism.

But, it isn’t just budget problems the haunt the topic of religion, it is the nature of the topic itself.  In the case of Christianity, there are estimated to be more than 30,000 denominaions.  Every one of them has come into existance for one reason, it is right, the others are wrong.

This  being the case, there is inevitably criticism of writers who cover religion.  “Why don’t you give more coverage to the branch of the faith that knows what it is talking about?” ask people from every faith.   That coverage of religion is biased comes in from many denominations.

The impossibility of successfully dealing with this accusation of bias is, reportedly, a factor in the loss of some seasoned members in religious reporting.  With 30,000 denominations, each with only limited tolerance of the others, the futility of working to eliminate the charge of bias is obvious.

Newspaper management may be wrong in not paying enough for and encouraging reporting on religion.   Certainly, it is a topic a broad section of our society finds very interesting.


13 Responses

  1. entech

    “Why don’t you give more coverage to the branch of the faith that knows what it is talking about? ”

    Take heed, Jon, and give more coverage to Islam, Shinto, Hindi, Buddha and the Great Green Tree Frog of Northeastern Australia.

    I guess there is so much to know about the universe after these 14.7325 million years (come next Thursday) it would take thousands of sects/cults and denominations each with a tiny glimpse of the truth to know even a small part of it.
    I think cosmologists probably know a bit more because they actually look out at it with the starts to guide them. The sects etc. look inwards with some old writings to guide them of in wards.

  2. Beau

    “With only limited tolerance…”?

    My guess is that there is more tolerance amongst any number of Christian denominations than perhaps you may have for just one.

    How free-thinking is that?

    1. entech

      I like guessing games.

      My guess is that Jon has more tolerance for Unitarian Universalism than many Christians have for other Christian denominations.
      I think it would be more than a guess to say more than most have for Jehovah’s Witnesses.

    2. Beau 5:15 “amongst any number of Christian denominations..”

      If memory serves, there was a lot of discussion among Christians about Mitt Romney brand of the faith–some saying they could not vote for such a false version of Christianity.

    3. In 300 or 1300 a teenager who had a living grandparent was growing up in a world not noticeably different from that of the grandparent. the times were changing but too slowly for anyone to notice.

      1. Bill “In 300 or 1300 a teenager who had a living grandparent was growing up in a world not noticiably different from that of the grandparent.”

        I wonder if it seemed that way to the grandparent. I have the impression parents and grandparents all thing the next generation is no darn good.

        1. entech

          O Tempora O Mores, Cicero wasn’t speaking of “The youth of today” when he bemoaned the Times and Morals (customs). But a long time before and since the “upcoming generation” has rarely been seen with any great and enthusiastic favour.

          Perhaps it is something to do with getting older, compounded by becoming a parent. I was married over 40 years without being lucky enough to have offspring, I seem to have a much more realistic view of my youth than people I have known most of my life. What they worry about and complain about is sometimes quite modest compared to them as the young people I knew 50 or more years ago. I wonder if parenthood destroys memory, makes it selective or just casts a cloud or two over things.

  3. wolfy32

    It reminds me of a conversation I had with my parents on the age of the planet and human development.. My dad believed in this:

    It was an explanation for how humans could live 930 years in genesis and why people kept getting younger and younger generation after generation. (Up until now at least).

    Yet, the science yet again pokes many holes in the theory. Plus, the theory itself creates religious paradoxes..

    These theories are things people buy into and believe (passionately) they’re right.

    I’m not saying I know the answers, I belive evolution and creationism are both right. However, that doesn’t make me anymore right than anyone else.

    People are pinning their hopes for forever in the bible. And although I do believe there’s more than we can possibly imagine to the universe, I realize the possibility could also exist that religion is like the movie “The Island (2005).” In which clones are convinced that they want to go to paradise and in reality paradise is the place they go to have their organs harvested to keep their “original / sponsor” alive. The movie didn’t do well, but provides a look into religion. Is the need for something greater, simply to create volunteer specimens for some sinister purpose?

    Faith that all eternity is a good place to be… Not a bad place.. But, if an eternal war between good and evil exists, what does that say about eternity?

  4. Katherine

    If I ran a newspaper, I would encourage columnists with expertise to write more. Anyone who can develop expertise, and share it with clarity, should be published. Whether that expertise is based on a presumed truth, or what some like to call a scientifically proven truth, it can be valid and informative. Culturally, we need more information about each other to understand each other. One hopes we could even develop some sympathy/empathy for someone else’s beliefs.

  5. entech

    The topic is the reducing number of religious reporters, a parallel here is the reduction in comments when there is no sin and no guns in the topic. Although someone can introduce them and get it going it remains that when the original topic is just interesting most of your commentators are not interested.

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