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Just a Thought - I'm not sneaky when I record

I’d like to address an issue – for lack of a better word – resulting from the recent unpleasantness that occurred during the county Health and Welfare Committee meeting on June 12.

Specifically, I was asked if I was the one that secretly shot the video and then placed it online. It depicted a commissioner’s back and was held down low. You really couldn’t make out any of what was going on. It was no better than an audio recording.

When I was first asked, I didn’t think much about it. I answered it honestly and went on about my day. Once I had time to think about it, I was slightly offended to think anyone would accuse me of doing something so sneaky.

For the record, I am not the one who did that. I would never do that.

First, if I had wanted to video the meeting, my camera would have been sitting on a tripod in the room for all to see. I don’t do sneaky. I do record audio for future reference, if needed. To do that, I push “record” and sit it right in the middle (or as close to it as possible) of the table and walk back to my seat. Everyone sees me do that.

Also, if I had a video recording of that meeting, I would not send it to anyone or place it on Facebook. I don’t work for Facebook. I’m not emotionally invested in Facebook. I know some people would die without Facebook in their lives, but I’m not one of them. I don’t need its validation.

Much like the pictures I take and the articles I write, any video I take would be presented to my editor for his consideration. I would have gone with his determination on what to do with it. Whatever he decides, I go with.

I would like to say my years as a reporter have been uneventful, but that’s just not the case. I’ve had angry people at wrecks threaten to assault me, one firefighter threaten to confiscate my camera (no authority whatsoever to do so and we both knew it), death threats from an article I wrote, false accusations by one person attempting to get me in trouble at work (I still do not know why), etc. The list could go on and on of unpleasantness. However, this was my first occasion to be verbally insulted during an open meeting by a county commissioner.

I did have one city alderman threaten to get me fired if I didn’t stop writing articles that did not meet his approval. If memory serves, he said he’d hate to see a single mother be jobless but that was entirely up to me.

That conversation was in private. My reaction wasn’t what he wanted to hear – an outright negative and request denied.

He did make an attempt the very next morning to get me fired. That was years ago, and I’m still here. He’s no longer an elected official.

Standard reporter Lisa Hobbs can be reached at 473-2191