All posts by Sarita Kelly

Podcasting

The audience is anyone who is new to podcasting like myself and the goal is to show how great podcasting can be.

I’m new to podcast. Shameful, right? I knew they were around but never really listened until two years ago when I was introduced to Roughing the Podcast via Twitter. The host, Di Murphy and Ted Glover go back and forth about all things related to the Minnesota Vikings. It was great to listen to them and the knowledge they had about the Vikings and football in general.

After I listened to a few shows I feel down a rabbit hole of podcast. Not just about sports though. I was listening to radio podcast, political podcast- I tend to listen few and far between to them, and comedy podcast just to name a few. What is great about them is that they provide great content without reading. I do love to read, but when I’m in the car or at work I can’t whip out a book or a magazine, and I can get the same content while driving or at my desk.

While I have a new found appreciation for podcast, I have found some that just aren’t good. In The New Rules of Marketing & PR on page 312 they talk about “show preparation.” I have heard podcast were the host weren’t prepared and it within the first five minutes the show is ruined because the host have no idea what they are talking about.

But overall, podcast have been a great discovery for me and I feel that if you are new them like I was, I suggest picking your favorite topic and start from there. Happy listening.

Bridge Safety

With the recent collapse of the pedestrian bridge Miami near Florida International University this brings to the spotlight once again bridge and road safety.

With recent reports stating that an engineer observed, “some cracking that’s been observed on the north end of the span.” How safe was the bridge to begin with and why were workers allowed to work on the bridge when there was cracking in the bridge. The cracking in the bridge should have been enough to halt any other work beside the repairing of that crack.

This brings to mind the 35W bridge collapse that happened here in 2007. There bridge was deemed “structurally deficient.” That meant that there was work that needed to be done, more importantly it was deemed, “fracture critical,” and that means that “the failure of just one vital component could cause the whole bridge to collapse.” And that vital component did fail. Again, once there were obvious signs of failure for 35W the work that was going on at the time of the collapse should have stopped. They should have closed at least one part of the bridge to start the repairs.

With the Miami collapse this just shows that there is still so much work to do with the infrastructure in this country. Last year, 172 bridges in Minnesota are structurally deficient or fracture critical. With such a high number bridge safety in Minnesota and this country should be a top priority. We use pedestrian and vehicle bridges every day and we trust that they are safe. But with those numbers, just in Minnesota alone, shows we have a long way to go.

Florida shooting survivor’s receive death threats

The Stoneman Douglas High School shooting is a tragedy but it is now turning into a bigger one. The far right extremist who show support of the second amendment are stating that the survivors of this mass shooting who are speaking out in favor of tighter gun laws are “crisis actors” who have been hired to push a political agenda.

These extremist are now going a step further and sending death threats to these families who are speaking out in favor of tighter gun laws.

The Hogg family has been the center of these conspiracy theories because the father worked for the Florida FBI division. The far right extremist feel the FBI is becoming increasingly anti President Trump and is focusing on how the FBI office had a tip about the shooter weeks ago, but did nothing.

While the author did a good job of explaining how these stories came about and how they are spreading through social media, he didn’t really go into much detail about the Hogg family. There are a few quotes from the mother and son, but other than that it is left alone.

I feel like the author should have went into more detail about how the shooting has affected them. He should have asked them how they are dealing with the death threats? He could have asked do the regret speaking out? Especially since the reason why her husband left the FBI was due to the early onset of Parkinson’s disease which no one knew about until now because he was “embarrassed.”

Giving more context to how these threats are affecting the Hogg family in addition to how and where the threats started from would have made the story stronger. Just solely focusing on where these conspiracy theories came from is one sided and gives them more attention. What we need to be talking about is the community and how they can start to heal and what is next in regards to the gun reform debate.

Restorative justice

Restorative justice takes a different approach to justice. Instead of the traditional “do the crime, do the time” approach they want to bring one thing that is not often seen is sentencing, forgiveness.

I first found out about restorative justice in 2013 with a case from Florida. Conor McBride was dating Ann Grosmaire and had been arguing for two days straight, but it ended with McBride shooting Grosmaire point blank in the face while she was on her knees. It was a tragic end to the life of Grosmaire but also for McBride who ended up driving to the police station and turned himself in.

McBride had become apart of the Grosmaire family. He lived there on occasions when he wasn’t getting along with his parents so it was a hard thing to come to grips with for Ann’s parents. While on her death bed, Ann’s father allegedly told him to forgive Conor. While that seemed preposterous at the time, Ann’s father started to think of her words and think of his faith.

It wasn’t an easy decision to make but Ann’s parents did forgive Conor, but also found out about restorative justice and how it takes in to consideration the offenders accountability and if the families of the victims, or the victims themselves, are willing to have a civil face to face it will be arranged and possibly taken in for their sentence.

While this is rare for a murder case, they are often used in misdemeanor offenses. I feel like this would be a great thing to do. In the New York Times article they do say that offenders are less likely to reoffend when offered this program. Being able to be face to face with the person you hurt gives a human emotion to the crime, and because most crimes are “faceless” looking your victims in the face can really have an impact on the criminals.

 

 

Work and school colliding

I have a part-time job blogging  for a site for the Minnesota Vikings and it is amazing. I get to go to football games, go to training camp with a press pass, go to various events that are help by the team and players, and interview players and coaches. I get to combine my love of sports and writing which is great.

One would think that blogging would come naturally since I have been doing it for six years but when the Alex told us we could blog about a wide variety of topics I panicked. Its not that I don’t know what to do, I always have a topic to write about. Even if that topic causes heartbreak constantly, I know what to write about. Open ended anything always freaks me out a little so hopefully I will do well with this.