The Right Questions

–The NYT initiated a news blackout about one of their reporter held hostage by the Taliban—A New York Times reporter has just escaped the Taliban after having been held hostage for 7 months. The NYT asked news organizations to not report on the item because they said it would endanger his safety. So for the last few months there has been no word about his kidnapping or his fate. Since his freedom, however, there has been discussions about how much freedom the press is to have, how did dozens of organizations covering news manage to agree, was there really cause for a news blackout, does a news blackout hurt anyone, was it warranted in this case, why was it abided? Of all the questions raised, thus far at least, no one has raised what may be one the most important one, why was a journalist treated differently in the press than any other hostage, any aid worker, UN official, doctor, or citizen being held hostage? Why does the life of a journalist appear more valuable than that of any other hostage? Why wasn’t there equal treatment? Asking the right questions is usually a prerequisite to getting the right answers.