Are Women Really Better Communicators? KDLT's Jen Wahle Thinks So.

One of my proudest moments in the dozen or so years I was affiliated with the Tempest was when we put together a parody issue of the Argus Leader. Instead of the usual half-ass job we were famous for, we actually all put in a ton of time and energy to make it just right.
We made fun of columnists such as Terry Woster and Dave Kranz, and completely copied the Argus layout and writing styles. Their precursor to Link had just been introduced, so my main job was imitating then-music editor Bob Keyes. Besides a few not-so-good-natured digs at a few local bands, I even poked a little fun at my friends at KRRO.
I’ve always wanted to be involved in a follow-up to that infamous issue, but I concluded last week that there’s really no need. Our daily paper is unintentionally hilarious on its own.
Here’s an example. Last week they ran a front page headline regarding the attendance of various free events held recently in our fine city. The story itself is fine, but the claim that over a half million people attended either Jazzfest, Lifelight, and the air show is so ridiculous that it should never be used as a fact in a newspaper article.
I’m not saying that any of these events are not noteworthy, or that they don’t attract a lot of people. But the press release mentality of those involved in all three events results in numbers that in no way represents reality. As I’ve said many times before, I believe they hired their counters from the Million Man March.
Not that our downtown leaders are any better at accurately counting people. It seems like every event held downtown, from Hot Harley Nights to Germanfest to the Augustana Homecoming Parade, have led to newspaper stories claiming that almost everybody in the eastern half of the state has squeezed into a three block radius downtown. Uh, no.
Just when I finished laughing at that ridiculous story comes another laugh riot, this time on the front page of the Life section. In a national story lamenting the lack of men entering the television news business, Argus writers added some local flavor that should have never made the final edition.
There were some locals that provided a bit of reality in their comments – namely, the beautiful Shannon Stevens from KSFY. Of course, she could say about anything and I’d still be staring at her luscious legs.
Leave it to KDLT’s Jen Wahle to use the same clich├ęs that plague their nightly broadcasts. While admitting that low pay was one factor keeping men from going in to that somewhat glamorous field, she ruined any credibility with this statement, “it’s a good profession for women because women are natural communicators.” Uh, right.
That may be the stupidest remark I’ve heard from somebody employed in a field that routinely says stupid things. I’ve never bought into the “women do this and men do that” line of thinking. People are people, and their qualities and expertise has more to do with their individuality than what combination of X’s and O’s mommy and daddy’s chromosomes put together.
Yet Ms. Wahle didn’t stop there. She went on to say, “we have a lot of women on camera in this market that are very good role models for young women…they all work to get out into the community and make a difference”. Ugh. Sure, the three television stations (and all of the radio stations) do their part in various charitable functions. Really, though, how much of this is done so they can show their employees doing good deeds in news reports and commercials? And is this really a man vs. woman scenario? I give Shawn Cable a lot of grief, but to be fair he’s involved in as many of these functions as any local female reporter.
Since Ms. Wahle wants us to go back to an earlier time when men and women had their assigned places in society, I’ll play along. Hey Jen, why don’t you go back to the kitchen? Ok, that’s too harsh. Here’s a piece of advice – maybe you should just stick to reading the teleprompter. Analysis is obviously not your strongest suit.

Comments

danugh said…
I hope you're not kicking Jen out of town... I think she's kinda hot.

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