Journ Student Jess

Student journalist looking for feedback on assignments and journalism in general

Posts Tagged ‘politics

The day DOMA was struck down (an intern’s perspective)

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Courtesy Photo | Colorlines.com

If I had known how Wednesday, June 26, was going to end up, I might have packed a lunch or drank more coffee. I would have come up with a posting schedule for articles, lined up interviews and contacts, drank more coffee. I should have been more aware of the potential news happening in the nation’s capitol, as nine justices ruled on the Defense of Marriage Act and changed the lives of so many.

I’m not sure what news site I was reading at 11 p.m. that day but when I announced the breaking headlines to my editor, I knew I had my assignments for the day. So began a feverish race to call the local congressional offices, get a hold of the Tri-City Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Pride group leaders, updating a multimedia element regularly while being sent on a goose chase of an assignment.

I have been home for a few hours now and as I seem to have mellowed out a bit, the gravity of what today means is starting to hit me. I was only six years old when DOMA passed but understood by 18 what California’s Prop 8 did and how I felt about it. It was wrong. To deny the right of two people, who love each other and want to make a commitment for the rest of their lives, is wrong.

MacKenzie Burger | For MLive.com

I am getting pretty tired but feel the need to get my point across. Today, I spoke with people who disagreed with the Supreme Court justices and others who felt they did the right thing. Some people called me to talk about disapproval and said marriage is between one woman and one man. One person in particular told me plans of proposing to their partner of 13 years as soon as marriage is legal in Michigan. In my head, I respect all of those opinions and believe I did my best to write in an objective and thoughtful manner.

But in my heart, I am rejoicing. Prop 8 has been overturned and the shock waves of DOMA have only begun. There is a vote ahead, an important one and I plan to make sure mine counts for equality.

Here are the stories I worked on today regarding the Supreme Court’s ruling on DOMA:

Supreme Court Defense of Marriage Act ruling draws reactions from Bay City, Midland and Saginaw residents

Saginaw, Midland elected officials give their takes on Supreme Court’s Defense of Marriage Act ruling

Saginaw ACLU-affiliated attorneys say Supreme Court ruling ‘the right end result’

 

Here’s a cute picture of an owl to celebrate! Click here to read it’s story of being saved by a Saginaw police officer.

Courtesy Photo | MLive.com

Written by hayne2jr

June 27, 2013 at 2:37 am

What I’ve learned about elections, so far at least

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It was a long second day at the Saginaw News. I was supposed to work a night shift but showed up at the office bright and early. My editor figured since I was there, I might as well be writing so I got in on the latest action in Saginaw.

Turns out the Buena Vista Schools district shut down operations as of last night, letting go of all their employees and terminating all benefits. MLive’s education reporter (and fellow Chippewa) Lindsay Knake spent hours finding new angles and sources for the ongoing controversy before covering the school board’s community meeting later that night. It was also an election night for Hemlock, Swan Valley and my hometown of Midland so I was called in as reinforcements.

Thanks to Twitter, I learned Huffington Post had picked up the story about the Buena Vista schools closing and informed my editor. We quickly found other links to make an aggregation post, combining articles and sources from various publications across the nation. I was pretty pleased with the end result, which changed frequently throughout the process due to updates and more coverage. To read the full article, click here. 

Later that night, I talked with city and county clerks in Midland and began watching the election results page for any early precinct calculations. Yesterday I posted an article about a new technology bond initiative, introduced by the Midland Public Schools, that aimed to put an iPad in the hand of every student in the district. That proposal, along with a $54 million sinking fund renewal, was not passed by voters, with more information about the results here.

At the end of the day, I started to reflect on working Election Day in 2012. It was a very important and very hectic night working in Bay County; many precincts had trouble tallying votes and key sources were not picking up phones to comment. I remember leaving the county building around 4 a.m. with another reporter, walking back to the office to pound out a couple stories and being told to go home and get some rest by my editor. But only until 8 a.m., when the stories needed to be done to publish on MLive’s river of content.

Thankfully, I am working from home tonight and am able to make a quick getaway in order to sleep. Of all the things I have learned about working election nights, it is this: do not underestimate a good nap and an even better cup of coffee. Have a great night, readers!

 

Written by hayne2jr

May 8, 2013 at 3:51 am