How did you first get into journalism and writing?
I always loved to write. My first writing job? I lived in Lisbon, Maine, and wrote freelance for the Brunswick Times Record. I started that gig as a “stringer” in 1986. I didn’t do it full time until a few years later when I got my real start in broadcasting. That was 1989. Eventually, I left television and became an award winning morning show host. After decades of writing part-time and doing full-time radio, I worked my way back to print journalism.
What is your approach to journalism? Why do you write and what do you hope to accomplish with your articles?
I’m naturally curious. Pretty much anything I can understand, I want to know more about. My personal fascination is for issues and people that seem misunderstood. I like everyday heroes. People who put food on the table, get the lawn mowed and are nice to their families and people at work.
I also like to write about things in our society that get in the way of that everyday decency. And I like to write stories about the people who stick up for the everyday Jane or Joe who are just trying to get by. Sadly, there’s no shortage of villainy in the world. When I witness wrong doing, I like to shine a spotlight on the unnecessary obstacles created by either stupidity or selfishness in the hopes that those impediments might be dismantled. I like it when wrong-doings are exposed.
At the end of the day – everyone’s story deserves to be told. I like to tell that ordinary story. And to write about the good guys who make happy endings.
What do you think are the most important issues that we face today, and why?
Climate change is number one. Lots of big bad guys in that story and lots of small victims. I wrote from the gulf coast’s Hurricane Katrina in 2005 and from the Camp Fire in Paradise just before the pandemic. Words fail even the best journalist when we witness the folly of mankind and the shortsightedness of greed.
Social justice issues are a close second. What good is saving a human sustainable environment if we can’t be decent humans?
We need to be nicer to trans kids and meaner to oil companies. The world would be grateful.
Which publications and journalists do you follow?
I follow the Washington Post, New York Times, Mother Jones, Rolling Stone, the Nation Magazine, MS Magazine, and the Smithsonian. I love Jim Hightower and his Hightower Report. I’ve loved Jeremy Scahill since he blew the lid on Blackwater and he’s done nothing but great journalism for decades. I’m a big Rick Smith fan. And Randi Rhodes is sharper than a tack. Rush Limbaugh ejected her from the networks because he was pathologically allergic to the truth, but she’s still out there bringing fantastic news and commentary that keeps people sane. (Seriously, can you get a better endorsement than Rush Limbaugh hated what I do?)
Why is it important for people to support independent media outlets like the Bucks County Beacon?
This is a simple question. The truth is essential to a functioning society. If everyone in your home lied to you, you couldn’t get a decent grocery list written, let alone prioritize your happiness. It’s the same for self-governance.
My husband is a monthly contributor to Bucks County Beacon – not because he feels the need to give back some of my paycheck – but because he believes in the high level of quality the paper demands from me, and my colleagues. He’s proud of the work we do. I am too.