Humanitarian crisis

Published: Monday, Aug. 11, 2014 - 9:08 pm
Last Modified: Wednesday, Aug. 13, 2014 - 8:56 am

The most overworked, trite expression in journalism today is "humanitarian disaster," hereinafter referred to as HDs.

Just how many HDs are there? Immigrants crossing our southern border are an HD. The refugees on an Iraqi hilltop are an HD. The Ebola outbreak is an HD. Syria is an HD. The children in Honduras and Guatemala are an HD. The Ukraine is an HD;. The Gaza war is a HD, etc, etc.

This is not to say these any of these are not serious, but please stop describing everything as HDs. Tell me what you see. I can draw my own conclusions.

Somehow, overlooked is the performance of the U.S. Congress which clearly qualifies as an HD. How did the press ever miss that?

Maybe humanitarian crises should be graded like hurricanes: on a scale of 1 to 10? Or, maybe editors should demand better writing from their reporters

-- Robert N. Austin, Sacramento

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