PROMPT: “Good Night and Good Luck” addresses the moral courage of iconic journalist Edward R. Murrow in countering corporate resistance to his exposure of the malevolence of Senator Joe McCarthy. Indeed,Murrow’s moral courage in the face of powerful opposition is the hallmark of what this entire course has been about. We have seen this issue throughout the films we have seen and discussed: Judge Ernst Janning, who made the wrong moral choice; Sophie and Hans Scholl, who made the right moral choice; Mose Wright, who made the right moral choice; Mr.. Wright (in “Rosewood”), who made the right moral choice; etc.
This prompt gives you the opportunity to weigh in on a real life journalistic dilemma loosely related to the Murrow story. It was briefly discussed in class. A former student about 20 years or so ago was working as a TV investigative reporter in a small market city. Through diligent work, he discovered substantial corruption among some local influential business leaders. He brought his findings to his managing editor at the TV station and asked to report it on television. His investigation was entirely accurate and flawless.
His editor congratulated him on a job well done. Then he told him that some of these business leaders were major advertisers to the station and would likely be very upset at this report. He also said that if the withdrew their advertising, the revenue loss could result in layoffs, implying that even this young reporter could be in jeopardy. The managing editor then said that the reporter could run the story if he really wanted to, but that he strongly advised against it.
You (once again!) are a close friend. He turns to you for advice. He tells you that he went into journalism because Edward R. Murrow inspired him. But he feels severely conflicted, because this is a really good job. He asks you to write a 7+ page letter to him suggesting what he should do, with all supporting reasons, using the class films (and anything else you would like) as support.”
7+ pages, use the ideas from the film Good Night and Good Luck (2007) and be sure to reference it throughout the essay. Also include or reference moral conflicts in films such as: Judgement at Nuremberg, Rosewood, Thelma and Louise, or Sankofa. Message me any questions
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