Grief and loss are are without a doubt human experiences. Regardless of class, creed, sex, race, etc, we all deal with grief and loss during our lifetimes.
Rebecca Soffer and Gabrielle Birkner both dealt with unexpected losses at an an early age; their respective parents died when both women were still relatively young. Together, they founded the website, Modern Loss.
They also write a book about loss and grief entitled Modern Loss: Candid Conversation About Grief. Beginners Welcome.. Interviewing a variety of people, the message is clear: grief and loss are emotions that are both difficult and complicated to deal with.
While the book is well written, the quality that makes it stand out is the humanity of the stories the interviewees tell. They come from all walks of life, but they know all too well what the pain of grief and loss feels like.
I absolutely recommend it.
Freedom of the press is the corner-stone of any legitimate democracy. It is also one of the first freedoms to be curtailed or removed completely when a dictator or an autocrat comes into power.
On Thursday, a gunman killed five employees of the Capital Gazette newspaper in Annapolis, Maryland. According to the news reports, the accused gunman held a grudge against the newspaper. In 2011, the gunman, Jarrod Ramos was accused of stalking a former high school classmate. As any newsroom would do, they reported the story for their readers.
While this story again brings up the issue of gun control and mental health, I think the bigger issue is the question of the security of freedom of the press. It’s not exactly a secret that you know who openly disdains and criticizes the press with the exception of a few newspapers or channels that cater to his views.
While the accused certainly has blood on his hands, I have to wonder if the open war on the press is in a small way, partly to blame for the murders of five innocent people.