Gene's Blog: Pulitzers and Sacred Cats

Gene's Blog

Democracy dies in darkness, the Washington Post reminds us on it's app each day. Then there's Edmond Burke who once said that the only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing. 

Or in this case, a pair of women.

Jodi Kantor and Meghan Twohey of the New York Times helped the paper nail down the 2018 Pulitzer for public service for their expose on movie mogul Harvey Weinstein. The Times, along with the New Yorker, did extensive work on his years of sexual harassment, a story that helped fuel the #MeToo movement. The public service award is considered the most prestigious of the honors Pulitzer hands out each year.

And here's to the Milwaukee Press Club for beating Pulitzer to the punch. The local media organization (full disclosure: I'm a member and also part of the group's board) announced months ago that its annual Sacred Cat would be going to Kantor and Twohey. The Cat honors national reporters and yes, it's truly feline-inspired. The Cat is our mascot, the mummified remains of which stand as a silent guard over the bar at our headquarters, the Newsroom Pub in downtown Milwaukee.

This is the second straight year we've chosen our Cat only to have the fine folks at Pulitzer validate our selection. Last year, it was Washington Post reporter David Fahrenthold who won for national reporting, only after accepting our group's invite.

The Cat (as well as the Headliner Awards honoring local news makers) will be given out as part of the annual Gridiron Dinner May 11 at Milwaukee's Intercontinental Hotel. It's your chance to see and hear the winners in person, as well as to watch as we honor local journalistic endeavors at the professional and college level. 

Even though it's a bunch of news people, it's really a lot of fun. Honest.

Those who love good, solid reporting and who respect the work it takes to excel at it could do far worse than to spend a night with us to celebrate all that's right about the news business. Lord knows it's held in contempt by way too many because, well, in too many cases good reporting doesn't always fit in the viewer/listener/reader's echo chamber of choice. Reporting done right needs to be acknowledged and encouraged.

Feel free to join us.  Democracy dies in darkness. The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing. On May 11, raise a glass to two women who did a lot to end abuse and harassment, who triggered a movement that continues today.


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