Despite what others might think, this blog is not a manifesto of my hatred for the University of Miami. This blog started because it was required for a news blogging class I am taking this semester. We were assigned to write a blog about something we are passionate about, something we would enjoy writing about multiple times a week for the 16-week semester. While other people chose blog topics on technology, lifestyle, and fashion, I chose to do a news blog focused on campus crime.
I am a staff writer at The Miami Hurricane and copy chief at Distraction Magazine. And while I completely support both of these publications, they are funded by the school and, as much as they would like to deny it, have their hands tied to report on certain topics. A call to the media relations department will reveal that any story that doesn’t paint the university in a positive light will be denied. The Miami Hurricane used to publish my blogs every Monday on their site but they’ve rescinded our agreement because they think it’s a liability now.
When the university screws up (a frat is suspended for an unregistered party, underage students are hospitalized for alcohol poisoning, or students boast their sexual promiscuity on film), student media will not cover it.
But if a tree falls in the forest it still falls even if no one can hear it or, in this case, no one is willing to report on it. If student media or even The Miami Herald won’t report on these topics that doesn’t mean they do not happen. And when I blog about them I do not make them happen or any more real.
My sources are not hearsay or rumor. I get my blog topics from incident reports that I pick up every week from the Coral Gables Police Department. (For those not in COM250 it is perjury to lie on a police report.)
I love this school. My grandparents met at UM and were the first couple to ever be married on campus (in the garden right behind the Lowe Art Museum). My grandfather was a Phi Delt. My grandmother was a Tri Delt. She was actually president of her sorority and over 50 years later my little sister is part of that same chapter. My father worked at UM for over 20 years. I grew up a few miles away from UM. I would bike ride around Lake Osceola and swing on the benches at the Rat (the old Rat). I remember cheering for the ‘Canes at the Orange Bowl every employee weekend and watching Willis McGahee’s knee snap backward during the Fiesta Bowl. I used to have the biggest crush on Ken Dorsey when I was in fourth grade. I will always hate Ohio State.
But I love this school, so much, that I will still love it when underage students drink too much and UMPD looks the other way. I will still love this school even though they unjustly bust students for having 0.5 grams of marijuana. I still love this school even though in 2001 a student was hazed to death in the lake.
(I hate that these things happen at UM but maybe by writing about them and people learning about them it will make a difference.)
I love this school so much that I am not afraid to blog about everything related to it, even the negative stuff. I thought other students would want to hear about everything that happens on campus, especially things that are not being reported by student or mainstream media. I was wrong.
A few negative comments on my blog and reprimanding emails will not scare me or make me stop. When people screw up they should be held to account even if they’re wearing orange and green and pay $58,782 a year to go to school here.
I am not a traitor and I do not hate my school just because I am the only person willing to report on the negative things that do happen. For those that think they don’t happen, well, they’re in denial. That’s fine but don’t try to censor me.