Clark Kent Leaves the Daily Planet
October 24, 2012 2 Comments
Clark Kent is calling it quits. After working for years at the Daily Planet, he’s throwing in the towel because, (gasp!), he still has the gall to want to write real news.
In Superman issue 13 (which hit shelves today), Clark says in one panel that “I’ve been a journalist for barely five years now. Why am I the one sounding like a grizzled ink-stained wretch who believes news should be about — I don’t know, news?”
It is a sad state of affairs when even fictional reporters can no longer tolerate the state of the press today. Like so many of us who went to journalism school with aspirations of telling stories that matter, changing times and struggling media companies ask that many journalists instead write about the latest hairdo a singer sports on the red carpet rather than talk about abuses of power by corrupt government officials.
Sure, a growing number of the population feels bombarded by bad news lately. Most people, whether casual consumers of the press or journalists themselves, would rather not have to write disturbing stories about mentally unbalanced gunmen who walk into movie theaters and shoot down unsuspecting victims. Still, there are a lot of great stories that go untold because now reporters have to spoon feed America the sugar-coated fluff pieces that sell publications or drive traffic to websites.
When Clark went to j-school, hero that he is, I’m sure that he also wanted to deliver hard-hitting stories that inspired everyday citizens to stand up and make a difference in the world. He believed in the good in humanity, and he wanted to see them become better versions of themselves because they were educated and shown what issues really need to be affected by change. Instead, like many journalists today, he’s forced to write another water-cooler piece about Lady Gaga’s weight gain or whether or not Rihanna and Chris Brown should reconcile after what’s proven to be a tumultuous relationship (to say the least).
But now that Mr. Kent is leaving the Daily Planet, what will he do? Is he still going to be a reporter? Will he join the Peace Corps to feed children in struggling countries, take to the streets to clothe the homeless or will he take the helm at a start-up company so he can tell the stories he actually wants to tell? These are questions every reporter is asking these days as they struggle to balance the myriads of tasks they’re asked to accomplish on a pauper’s salary.
Yes, Clark deserves something more and I wish him all the best. But I’m confident that as he makes other tough choices after leaving his longtime employer (like how to afford healthcare), that whatever he chooses to do he will ultimately inspire the world to stand up for truth, justice, and the American way. Because no matter what, he knows we can all do better.