Wednesday, July 17, 2013
ROLLING STONE COVER STORY: SHAMELESS
Dzhokhar Tsarnaev. Boston bomber. Magazine cover. Despicable. Rolling Stone magazine
achieved what they set out to do when they decided to put Tsarnaev on the cover of its recent
issue. They struck cords, ruffled feathers, and got under the skin of many of us, but most of
all, Rolling Stone got the attention it wanted. Twitter, Facebook, and just about every other
vehicle on the social media highway is buzzing about its cover.
With emotions still raw and the wounds of so many still healing, Rolling Stone decided to
glorify a person who was determined to see mass destruction in Boston on April 15. He and
his brother wanted to kill and maim people to avenge the deaths of muslims who had been
killed by the United States in the wars of Iraq and Afghanistan. Innocent people were killed
and lives were shattered forever.
How do you think the parents of Martin Richard feel about Tsarnaev getting rock star attention
from Rolling Stone? He killed their 8-year old son, Martin, and severely injured their daughter,
Jane, 7, whose had to endure 11 surgeries already.
How do you think Jeff Bauman feels as he continues to learn to live without the two legs that
were blown off by the bomb the Tsaranaev brothers constructed and set off?
This decision by Rolling Stone is truly shameless. There was no good or decent reason for it.
But when people and companies are desperate they will do almost anything to save themselves.
The Internet has crippled the print industry. Newspapers are dying and magazines have become irrelevant. It's sadly ironic that Rolling Stone is using the thing that helped their demise to
try to resuscitate the magazine. Rolling Stone is trending today thanks to tweets, Facebook, and
nearly every talk show that's blabbering about it because it's a "hot" story. Sad.
Mass killings by crazed people will continue as long as media outlets continue to feed the
monster. Low-life psychos with no hope for the future, see magazines like Rolling Stone deifying these shameless human beings and they'll decide to go down in a blaze of glory, committing
heinous acts while becoming part of history.
As warped as they are, they understand the message magazines like Rolling Stone are sending:
You want to be glorified and get on the cover of a magazine, just kill people. A lot of them.
It's sad, it's harsh, but it is true. And it's probably true that Tsarnaev is smiling and laughing in
his jail cell because he has achieved rock star status to many in the world today. His fan club,
those idiots who stand on the streets and yell for the cameras, "Free Tsaranaev" are also grinning
We live in a sick, twisted world. The executives who made the decision of putting Tsaranaev
on the cover had one thing, and one thing only on their minds: themselves. They didn't do the
right thing, but rather the right thing for them. They wanted more hits, more views, and more
sales of their magazine, which we know, equals more dollars in their pockets.
This has become the way of the industry and Rolling Stone magazine isn't the only one guilty
of it. Last year, TIME magazine, which is also bleeding money and has become somewhat
irrelevant, put a very attractive woman on the cover with her grown-up kid sucking on her
breast. When I saw it, I thought it was an April Fool's joke or something, except nobody was
laughing. Twitter was abuzz, Facebook on fire, and all the talk shows were spewing about the
the picture of the hot mom with the lips of her child on her breast.
TIME magazine accomplished its goal: They got people talking about their cover and their
magazine, which was the first time in a long time anybody had even mentioned TIME magazine.
A few weeks ago, Sports Illustrated, once the gold standard in the magazine industry, put
Dennis Rodman on its cover for its, "Where are they now"?, issue. Unless you've been living
in a cave, we already knew where Dennis Rodman was: Making a fool of himself over in
North Korea trying to talk politics with a dictator who has committed more crimes against
humanity than Facebook has users. Yep, Sports Illustrated chose to put Rodman on the cover
because they knew it would be talked and tweeted about.
It's sad, it's really sad that executives have to make decisions like this. The one concerning
the Boston bomber is the worst to come down the pike in a long, long time. I didn't read
Rolling Stone very much before Wednesday, you can bet I will never pick it up after this
despicable decision to put that loser on the cover.