In a journalism class I took last semester, I had the opportunity to see Philly’s beloved CBS 3 news anchor, Larry Mendte, in person. After “forgetting” to come into my class the first time he was scheduled to visit, disregarding emails that my professor sent asking him to reschedule and some “nasty” emails sent to him by my classmates, he finally showed up. Even though he was two months late and he may not have been wearing socks, I was charmed by him, just like many of his loyal viewers were. He talked to us about how he made his way to the top, how much he loved journalism and how dedicated he was to his profession. So when I saw that he was being charged with a felony, I was shocked.
After being charged with intentionally accessing a protected computer without authorization (he snooped through former college Alicia Lane’s emails), the media said that Mendte was fully cooperating with the FBI. I thought that was good of him, since it was obvious that he was wrong, and he is such a prominent public figure. In an article I read today by Ronnie Polaneczky, she brought up a good point about Mendte’s behavior. Why was he being commended for doing something right (cooperating) after doing something so wrong?
In the past few weeks, Larry Mednte has gone from a beloved news anchor, to a felon, to a guy who is just trying to do what’s right. By reading different articles written by different journalists, we can see him as a completely different man. Which one should we pick?