Reporter’s Corner: Finding the light in local news

I follow the reporting of a small, little media company called “Good Good Good” which produces a quarterly print newspaper that only prints – you may be able to guess it – good news.
The Good Newspaper doesn't talk about the injustices, the problems or the fears of the world – in their opinion, there are enough people already doing that and doing a pretty good job keeping the world updated on crucial issues.
Instead, The Good Newspaper prints stories that show the triumph, the care, the heart and kindness of humankind.
I think its an honorable undertaking – one that sometimes daily and weekly papers can't always accept.
When we report the news within our local community, we have to do so fairly and justly. We can't pick and choose the 'pretty' news that gives us feel-good warmth. Sometimes, the news is full of arrest reports, tales of drug busts, government shake-ups and similar content.
But it's not always like that.
I feel that we, the staff writers of the Monticello News and Jefferson County Journal, are pretty good at finding good news of our own.
In a world where 'the media' is an ominous word that looms before bad news of politics, terrorism, global pitfalls and environmental fears, finding a bit of good news is like finding a sunny spot on a cold day.
While our newspaper does report on criminal arrests, break-ins and the occasional strife within local government meetings, our papers are also chock-full of good news.
Like, putting the spotlight on teachers who have dedicated over 20 years of teaching to local children, or the local group of kids who are volunteering to help those impacted by a natural disaster. Flipping open our papers, you may find a page filled with crime news – but you'll also read a lot about community fundraisers, about the joy a recent festival brought, ways adults are being active in the lives of local kids, kudos to our area's first responders and the contributions of a local organization to our community.
In this issue alone, yes – we have a whole page of crime-related content, but if you continue to look, you'll also find our paper spreading the word about community events or a special evening of fundraising for a local organization.
We have:
• A whole page of schoolchildren proudly showing off their new books from their school's book fair, as well as an acknowledgment of the good deeds done by a school guidance counselor who purchased books for some of the in-need kids at his school.
• A picture of children playing with puppies at the animal shelter's recent Blessing of the Animals ceremony.
• The birthday celebration for a remarkable local man who is not only a soon-to-be 95-year-old, but also a World War II veteran of the United States Navy.
• The story of local people learning more about the basics of our government's Constitution and our own personal freedoms.
And honestly, so much more!
We may not be The Good Newspaper – but I think we hold our own pretty well when it comes to finding the light that keeps our local community glowing brightly.
What's your own “Good News” story? Send us a Letter to the Editor telling us what good thing happened to you recently – did the good deed of a neighbor brighten your day? Was a recent opera house production extraordinary? Did you witness an act of kindness while in line for your daily coffee?
Send us a note, tell us what happened!