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Good Morning Nanty Glo!
              Monday, September 17 2001

Our inferiority complex

Sensing that you may need relief from "Topic A," I'll change the focus of the discussion at least somewhat today; if you think we need to return to last week's events and continue processing them, please let me know. Also feel free to "talk among yourselves" by sharing thoughts and comments on this email Forum about whatever's on your mind.

Though this entry won't address terrorism and the state of the war, it is an outgrowth of watching last week's coverage on television. One of the more mundane thoughts that struck me, but one that would have immediately suggested a topic for this forum under any other circumstances, was the national networks' coverage of the crash of United Airlines Flight 93 near Shanksville, Somerset County. I did hear and read on network web pages the words "Somerset County" several times, but never heard mention of Johnstown once. The closest the media could get to pinpointing the crash was "85 miles East of Pittsburgh." I can't in my wildest dreams imagine the same media describing a disaster happening less than 15 miles from Scranton or Lancaster as "85 miles (or whatever those respective distances would be) from Philadelphia."

So why the aversion toward Johnstown, our fair city? The whole city came to a halt after the ill-fated plane almost crashed at its airport and then went on probably less than a minute's flight time to its destiny in the Shanksville strip mine. That was reported in the Tribune-Democrat, of course, but ignored in the national media. Of course "we" are part of the Pittsburgh/Tri-State Area, but so are Wheeling, West Virginia; Steubenville, Ohio, and Cumberland, Maryland (and why isn't it the quad-state area?). It seemed to me doubly reprehensible that NBC was one of the perpetrators of this slight. Johnstown's WJAC is one of its longest-running affiliates, having gone on the air in 1949, long before KDKA-TV became the Pittsburgh CBS affiliate or WPXI became Pittsburgh's own NBC affiliate (1957). Greater Johnstown is still more than a quarter of a million people, still a major metropolitan center despite its many losses since the closing of the big steel mills. One thing it doesn't need is to be ignored and passed over when there are legitimate places to recognize and mention it.

Does anyone have a theory to explain this? Am I making something out of nothing? Have you observed other ways in which we seem to remain "invisible" to the world, or be overlooked?

Webmaster Jon Kennedy

Husbands, wives

I think men who have a pierced ear are better prepared for marriage. They've experienced pain and bought jewelry.

—Rita Rudner

Sent by Mike Harrison

Thought for the day

Don't call the terrorists fundamentalists. Religious people don't hate. People who hate enough to do such things are a small minority identifying themselves with any religious affiliation but in reality they are not followers of any religion but their own egos.

—Dr. Joyce Brothers on MSNBC

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