Discussion / student replies | Reading homework help

Answer the question below related to Case Number 9-C Cincinnati Enquirer’s Heroin Beat in the Discussion

Evaluate the Cincinnati Enquirer’s decision to cover the heroin and opioid epidemic as a public health instead of a criminal issue. How might the Enquirer’s reporting influence how the community understands and addresses the heroin and opioid epidemic?

One paragraph I will upload case study in pdf 176-177  No citations or quotations


Student replies 

4 sentences each 

1.When a newspaper or news outlet decides to cover a tricky topic like the heroin and opioid crisis, the reporter has to be careful. This epidemic has ravaged our entire country from New York to California, and has without a doubt left people with a different worldview. Watching countless young lives be taken away by these drugs has caused some people to take a hardline stance against this. They are saying lock these people up and throw away the key. The Cincinnati Enquirer made the decision to cover this crisis as a public health crisis, rather than a criminal problem. When you are dealing with people on these types of drugs, you cannot just look at them with a singular non-changing type of view. You have to open up and help the public understand, because not everyone does heroin and opioids. Sometimes these are the best people that make the worst choices, and they don’t always deserve to be treated that harshly as criminals. Reporting with this different approach might help to draw back the criminal stigma when it comes to these drugs. It would be a good eye opener to the public if reports started to surface about how to help your loved one on these drugs instead of an arrest report including all the opioid busts. This situation goes to show why its dangerous to have a singular worldview.

2. The Cincinnati Enquirer made that decision to cover the heroin and opioid epidemic as a public health issue because addiction is not a crime. it takes two people to commit a crime. The people that it takes to commit a crime is the suspect and the victim. The heroin or opioid addict is not committing a crime because he or she is putting his or her life in danger. If the heroin or opioid suddenly got in a vehicle and drove down the road and got someone hurt then that would be a crime because there is a victim. Dealing with heroin and opioid addiction as a public health issue will save money and prevent prisons from filling up. The Enquirer would influence the community to help addicts get proper rehabilitation in order to break the addiction. If that happens then the addicts will not get themselves or someone else hurt.

3.Cincinnati Enquirer’s decision to cover the heroin and opioid epidemic as a public health issue instead of a criminal issue is just what it is. People get addicted to opioids through doctors mainly, because there are plenty of crooked licensed doctors prescribing these drugs to people. Sometimes even when these people don’t really need these medications, the doctors still prescribed them anyways. Terry DeMio’s approach to this story was well thought out and inspiring. She said the key to doing these is credibility and trust. The people have to understand that she and her newspaper care about them as people and not just a story. Since her community trusts her and her newspaper, they are more willing to let her inside their world for a more accurate representation of them. In her article she goes on to describe what some of the defendants look like when they walk into the courtroom after being arrested for heroin, and she says they look as if “their bones will poke through their skin. Their eyes sunken, their hair a tangled mess. Some are unsteady on their feet. Others scratch at sores on their arms.” To me, that sounds like a public health issue rather than a criminal issue. I think this huge story that DeMio has put together will have a positive influence on her community, because they see how unhealthy their neighbors and friends have become. They hear about the overdoses and how they affect their families,just like the two sons, two moms, one week portion of the article where they go on to describe how broken the mother was when she found out her son had died of overdose.

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