It is hard to find someone you know you politically disagree with who you can respect when discussing politics. Most people are uninformed buffoons who will snap up every kernel of propaganda drenched candy corn they can get.
It is much harder to find a journalist who reports on politics that I think most people on both sides of the aisle respect. Gwen Ifill was a very fair, honest and intelligent journalist. Using the past tense in that sentence fills me with some honest degree of sadness. I respected her and will miss her intelligent contributions to journalism.
When I saw the news today of her passing, I was shocked. I knew she was away from her normal job on PBS, but had no idea. The way in which she never said a word about the suffering she was going through on air, the way in which she never showed a hint of difference in who she was despite her difficulties…you have to greatly admire it. I certainly do. She never made the story about her. She didn’t want to be the show. She wanted to be the vehicle to get to the story. She embodied what a journalist was supposed to be. She sought facts, fairness to all sides of the issues and would not suffer fools. Never did she seek to become the story.
I am almost positive she was a liberal. However, the fact that I can’t be positive speaks highly to her fairness. You would be hard pinned to find a time when she showed abject favoritism or unfairness. All journalists have opinions. Few have ones you can’t discern within the first minute of a story. With Gwen, she was seeking to get you to think, not try and get you to agree. I will miss that.
I do not fear the future for our country, but I am saddened by our national loss. We need a functioning press of respected, intelligent and unbiased reporters. We didn’t have many yesterday. We have one fewer today.
God bless you, Gwen Ifill. You will be missed. My prayers to you and your family.