As for how long he’ll remain on the air, Robinette says he’s not sure. He has no immediate plans to stop, but at various points he spoke wistfully of retiring and leaving the city, pursuing his love of painting in some distant, less-troubled landscape. He also says he was approached by a delegation of local businessmen (whom he declines to name) about running for mayor next year when Nagin’s term expires, a suggestion he says he quickly dismissed. At times the city and its multitude of problems—staggering violence, dysfunctional politics, economic woes—seem to overwhelm even Robinette’s crusading temperament. And, hanging above it all, is the unrelenting specter that New Orleans remains in peril, unprotected by the incompetence of those Robinette rails against each week. The aftermath of Katrina reopened emotional scars from the war that Robinette thought had finally healed, and he’s not sure he’d be able to endure another big storm. That the city will flood again, Robinette has no doubt. “We’re basically Gulf-front property already,” he says with resignation. “People still don’t realize how close the sea has come.” But as another hurricane season gets under way, Robinette remains at the microphone, fighting a battle he sometimes thinks is already lost. And in the warm and verdant city outside his studio window, the trees are filled with the song of birds.
04:13 PM - July 17, 2009
A Man in Full
Four years after Hurricane Katrina, New Orleans broadcaster Garland Robinette is still fighting mad
Stop using ‘Brooklyn’ to mean hipster neighborhoods - Elite-oriented outlets typically only cover the borough’s most affluent, Manhattan-adjacent neighborhoods
The Reporters Committee is about to start suing people to help journalists - Katie Townsend joins the organization as its first litigation director
How a Nebraska newspaper kicked off a major prison sentencing scandal - The Omaha World-Herald found that hundreds of inmates were being released early
On media freedom, United Nations plays by its own rules - Months of international crises raises the stakes for reporting on the UN, but investigative journalists remain without a right to information
Keep calm and write a headline worth reading - Ease up on the exaggerations because someday you may need those explosive adjectives when a truly big story lands
Email blasts from CJR writers and editors
“Amid a months-long battle with administrators for editorial control … the Playwickian’s faculty adviser was suspended for two days this week”
Apple included language in its first Transparency Report to say that it had not been subject to a Section 215 Patriot Act request. That language is now gone.
Buzzword, buzzword, buzzword. Isn’t the buzzword on your mind now? Perhaps it is on other people’s minds? Read on or you’ll be clueless, dated, and without any friends in the world. Buzzword again!
The British reporter-turned-editor has made good on her promises to bring politics to the magazine, win some very big-deal journalism awards, and secure the most interesting exclusive interviews
Greg Marx discusses democracy and news with Tom Rosenstiel of the American Press Institute
Who Owns What
A report from the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism
Questions and exercises for journalism students.