Easy, tiger

Journalism really makes me laugh sometimes. Even though I study it in college I still scratch my head at the way it all works. We report facts – the news – and present a balanced view based on all sides of the story.

This week a teenager was mauled by a tiger in Dublin Zoo.

The BBC story reports that she was 19. The RTE story reports that she was 16. News24 reports a zoo director saying that the woman and her friend were “carrying alcohol in soft drink bottles so we can make the assumption their judgment was impaired”.

The papers have been dominated by Dublin Zoo making staunch defences of their security policies and trying to explain that tigers are wild animals and will actually bite people who stick their hands in to the cages.

What a waste of paper.

The main function of journalism for me is to report what is in the public interest.

So the public interest angle for me on this story is not that a woman’s hand was bitten by a tiger and she is now recovering in the hospital. The real story is that this utter toe-rag of a human being and her only-slightly more sensible pal are the flashing beacon representing all that is wrong with society.

I don’t even need to see these people to know what they look like – unkempt, undignified and without education or common sense.

The type of people who wander around public places with coke bottles full of alcohol are the type of people whom our people in power should be dealing with rather than placating. When this woman is out of hospital she should be brought to court for trespassing on private property. Okay so it’s a token charge but let’s make a bit of an effort here.

Why Dublin Zoo has to defend themselves against an idiot who climbs a six foot wall and blatantly does something they are not supposed to do is beyond me. I can only assume that she has some sort of learning disability because even leaving aside that she probably is bereft of common sense and education, surely there must be some logical part of the brain that equates tigers to danger.

But the stories on the front page of our newspapers are dull as dishwater. No condemnation of this moron and a wider condemnation of a State that still has not managed to reign in these boils on Irish. Have I got the wrong end of the stick here?

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