The Newseum opens in Washington

May 17, 2013 | By Jim Stovall | Filed in: news.

Gannett’s splashy new monument to journalism, the Newseum, opened in Washington yesterday. For the most part, I think, the reviews are good. (Check out this interactive guide at USA Today. And here’s the review.)

(My old friend from Navy days, Thomas A.K. Kai, was there and sent me a link to the pictures he took, one of which is above. Tom has about 40 good photos of the place both inside and out.)

The place, visually, can’t be missed, and its size and location will make it a tourist magnet. I certainly plan to try to get there the next time I am in D.C.

The hope is that people who know little and care little about the profession of journalism will show up and, after the visit, know more and care more. The memorial to journalists who have been killed doing their jobs is particularly appropriate and should not be missed by anyone.

Good journalism disturbs, unsettles and threatens people in authority. It frightens people who hold on to easy assumptions about the world in which we live and the people who inhabit it along with us. Whatever the technological and format changes that await us in the near future, I hope that there will be people who take on this calling in this very dangerous world. So, good luck to the Newseum and to those who visit the place.

One note: The giant marble slab that contains the words of the First Amendment on the outside of the building comes from just down the road from where I live in Blount County, Tennessee.

Jim Stovall (Posted April 13, 2008)

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