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Isn't It Depressing?

Wednesday, 19 September 2012 12:00 By Maya Schenwar, Truthout | Message
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Maya SchenwarMaya Schenwar, Executive Director of Truthout. (Photo: Truthout)When I tell people what I do for a living, the most common response is, "But isn't it depressing??" My response: "Of course!"

Grappling with the news every day is an emotional sky-dive with a rickety parachute. But for each of us on Truthout's staff, it's a jump we must take.

When Truthout reporter Mike Ludwig told me he wanted to cover the brutal "gas rush" that has brought a fracking epidemic upon Ohio, New York and Pennsylvania, it was because he felt compelled to do so: he grew up in Ohio, and - watching his childhood stomping grounds fill up with fracking rigs - he couldn't simply stand by. Truthout's lead investigative reporter Jason Leopold has described his decade-long pull to report on the horrors of Guantanamo: "There's something about the crimes committed by the Bush administration in our name that haunts me." And at 9:30 p.m. a couple of weeks ago, when I flipped on a local Chicago news station and heard a gaggle of corporate apologists squawking about the greed of public schoolteachers, I couldn't help staying up half the night to hammer out a column in defense of the teachers' rights and those of their students.

Truthout's content relations editor, Leslie Thatcher, once put it this way: "While our task will never be completed, neither may we ever desist." We can't not do this work. It's not because we love to wallow in the murk of disaster and political frustration. It's because we believe ardently that a more equitable, more humane world is possible, and we must expose the murk in order to climb toward that brighter future.

You, our community, are our partners in this journey toward justice, because you care too much to sit idly by. Only with your active participation can we continue on this path. Can you join with us today by making a tax-deductible contribution toward our work?

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In Solidarity,

Maya Schenwar, Executive Director

This article is a Truthout original.

Maya Schenwar

Maya Schenwar is Truthout’s Editor-in-Chief. Her book, Locked Down, Locked Out: Why Prison Doesn’t Work and How We Can Do Better, will be out from Berrett-Koehler Publishers in October. Follow her on Twitter: @mayaschenwar

Previously, she was a senior editor and reporter at Truthout, writing on US defense policy, the criminal justice system, campaign politics, and immigration reform. Prior to her work at Truthout, Maya was contributing editor at Punk Planet magazine. She has also written for the Guardian, In These Times, Ms. Magazine, AlterNet, Z Magazine, Bitch Magazine, Common Dreams, the New Jersey Star-Ledger and others. She also served as a publicity coordinator for Voices for Creative Nonviolence. Maya is on the Board of Advisors at Waging Nonviolence.


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