I went to Washington, D.C. last weekend. I visited to Smithsonian Air and Space Museum, National Gallery of Art and American History Museum. Of cause, I walked through the National Mall and I saw the Capital Hill, Washington Monument and Lincoln Monument. I went up to an observation room of Washington Monument and looked down to the city from there.
I had stayed in Washington, D.C. for three days. When I was walking to subway station from my hotel to get on the train that I would go back to New York last day, I found a new museum named “NEWSEUM”. I had three hours to get on my train, so I stopped to visit at this museum.
NEWSEUM exhibits the history about Journalism in the U.S. I found here that the modern journalism was one of the most important “inventions” by the U.S.
American journalists started the movement that they were reporting their own article by themselves’ getting stories. They write articles with their own experience and their own responsibility. They try to reveal the facts that government or powerful people hide for their interests. For example, Vietnam War was finished by New York Time’s releasing a government’s classified document. The Watergate scandals that led to the resignation of former President Richard Nixon were released by Washington Post’s reporter. Their activities affected the government and politics.
I think that Japanese journalists were influenced by this movement in 1970s. For example, former Prime Minister Kakuei Tanaka was forced to quit by revealing his illegal money politics by a Japanese journalist. After that, many journalists reported many case of political corruptions.
On the other hand, this kind of journalism has dark side. Some journalists want to sell their articles, so some of them make untrue sensational stories. Therefore, American schools educate media literacy for children. Media literacy is an ability of objective and logical thinking for all kinds of media.
These days, a lot of journalist activate on the Internet. They are called “blogger”. This is a new type of journalism. I think American people leads this movement also, and this movement is spread out all over the world.
Why can the journalism be improved in the U.S? I think that the reason relates to their splits of state's founding. It means liberal democracy. They are very proud of it and they think the important thing is civilian power. Journalism is an aspect of this in the U.S. I thought about that while visiting at this museum.