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Kirkwood High School Newspaper Reacts to Lockdown, Compares KSDK to Kanye West

Categories: Media

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"Wait, how did I get dragged into this?"
Ian Madden calls KSDK-TV (Channel 5) rude, intrusive and unprofessional after the station prompted a 40 minute lockdown during an investigation into school security.

"Maybe next time KSDK decides to cover something this important, they'll ensure the people the story impacts aren't too offended to listen," Madden writes for the Kirkwood Call, the high school newspaper.

See also: KSDK Investigation on School Safety in Kirkwood Reveals Journalists Are The Worst

Madden breaks the incident down by harkening back to the 2009 MTV Music Video Awards, when Kanye West intercepted the microphone from winner Taylor Swift.

Kanye's assertion that Beyonce's video for Single Ladies is among the all-time greats may be true, Madden says, but his repulsive stunt distracted from his message. So, too, did KSDK's poorly-executed undercover investigation shift the focus of the story from school security to journalistic ethics.

"Kirkwood lost all respect for the messenger, and KSDK's goal -- to communicate a crucial message -- was lost as well," he says.

KSDK quickly apologized for the lockdown, adding it was not the station's intention to cause a real security incident. Madden characterized the apology as: "KSDK is sorry if you are offended, but here is evidence that they are right and you are wrong."

"KSDK's apology failed to address the emotional impact such a terrifying experience can have on a community," Madden says. "I only hope they addressed as a staff the potentially devastating effects of undercover reporting."

Watch the apology and the report here:

Madden's editorial offers valuable insight into the minds of students who've seen strengthened school security in the aftermath of mass shootings across the country. Kirkwood went on lockdown just last month when a custodian heard light bulbs breaking and thought they were gun shots.

See also: 9 Investigative Reports KSDK Should Work On Now After That Epic School Safety Story

The post-Sandy Hook generation seems far more aware of the threats of violence in their school than the post-Columbine generation before them, and Madden criticizes KSDK for failing to ask students how safe they feel at school as part of the investigation.

"In today's charged atmosphere surrounding school shootings and the greater likelihood that one will occur, the result of KSDK's decision to go undercover -- the lockdown -- triggered even more panic and fear than it may have several years ago," Madden says.

Follow Lindsay Toler on Twitter at @StLouisLindsay. E-mail the author at Lindsay.Toler@RiverfrontTimes.com.


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16 comments
Pattie Van Horn Murphy
Pattie Van Horn Murphy

Well folks if you feel safe with people being able to walk into your child's school so be it.. I think you should be talking about security of your children!!

Mark Sullivan
Mark Sullivan

you seem to forget two crucial facts, Bill McClellan of the Post Dispatch mentioned them. At Sandy Hook, the gunman blasted his way in, anyone in his way when entering he shot and killed. The other shootings, including Virginia Tech, the shooter was internal to the campus and had access to the campus, the same with every other school shooting. Feeling a bit retarded now? I hope so, because this report of KSDK does not reveal that, not so much as a mention. The schools that KSDK says "are doing it right" the person at the desk is basically cannon fodder. Once they've died, and they would be the first, few if anyone will stand in his/her way. KSDK uses a consultant, what is a consultant anyway? A paid yes man, his job is to agree with whatever he's paid to agree with. If you have ever been to KHS Campus, you will find there are several buildings and the office is in the middle of all these buildings. KSDK did not mention this in their report, KSDK did not mention that their reporter did not answer his phone when it was called, nor did KSDK state that this person is a reporter with them when asked by the school, they intentionally caused a lock down because they are that pius. They intentionally wasted everyones time, the students, the teachers, etc... Nor did KSDK feel remorseful about the fear they struck into the hearts of students and parents. What KSDK did was irresponsible and piss poor journalism, they wanted to insert fear, they want use fear to terrorize everyone into submission. The student newspaper has better reporting than KSDK, and these kids have an opinion. And they wrote what they feel as students

Mark Sullivan
Mark Sullivan

Pattie you seem to forget two crucial facts, Bill McClellan of the Post Dispatch mentioned them. At Sandy Hook, the gunman blasted his way in, anyone in his way when entering he shot and killed. The other shootings, including Virginia Tech, the shooter was internal to the campus and had access to the campus, the same with every other school shooting. Feeling a bit retarded now? I hope so, because this report of KSDK does not reveal that, not so much as a mention. The schools that KSDK says "are doing it right" the person at the desk is basically cannon fodder. Once they've died, and they would be the first, few if anyone will stand in his/her way. KSDK uses a consultant, what is a consultant anyway? A paid yes man, his job is to agree with whatever he's paid to agree with. If you have ever been to KHS Campus, you will find there are several buildings and the office is in the middle of all these buildings. KSDK did not mention this in their report, KSDK did not mention that their reporter did not answer his phone when it was called, nor did KSDK state that this person is a reporter with them when asked by the school, they intentionally caused a lock down because they are that pius. They intentionally wasted everyones time, the students, the teachers, etc... Nor did KSDK feel remorseful about the fear they struck into the hearts of students and parents. What KSDK did was irresponsible and piss poor journalism, they wanted to insert fear, they want use fear to terrorize everyone into submission. The student newspaper has better reporting than KSDK, and these kids have an opinion. And they wrote what they feel as students

Shawn D. Monroe
Shawn D. Monroe

Where is Mr. Homer Hall? He would have never let us publish this mess in The Call when I was a journalism student.

Shawn D. Monroe
Shawn D. Monroe

Pattie....they didn't "Catch" anything, but caused hysteria. KHS is safe, when idiots don't try to pull stunts like this, you see what happened. LOCKDOWN, POLICE SWEEPS.... as soon as an intruder was recognized, the school did what was necessary. The bigger problem is that we actually have to protect kids in this manner from crazies.

Shawn D. Monroe
Shawn D. Monroe

This article is HORRIBLE. Again, journalism at its worst. How can you speak on one situation, while bringing up a totally different situation? What exactly does Kanye have to do with this story? Bringing down another person to try to prove your point is not good journalism.

Kelly Ferrick
Kelly Ferrick

This is from the Kirkwood Highschool newspaper, written by a Kirkwood student. Their is nothing ridiculous about them having a voice in what happened to them. And no where in the article is blame being placed. And as a Kirkwood parent, I don't appreciate the tactics that were taken for the newstory. They could have still had a story when the reporter got by the secretary without causing the school to be locked down by KSDK and the reporter refusing to admit they had sent a reporter into the school.

Roy Jacobs
Roy Jacobs

All this reporter did was walk into the school. Went to the office, left his business card and walked out the building. Why was the reporter allowed to walk out of the office with out a proper school escort? Not the reporters. fault, not the students fault, it was the fualt of the school. Now the school wants to blame the reporter. The reporter found a pretty easy flaw in school security.

Sharon L Dunn Kurt
Sharon L Dunn Kurt

Patty Van Horn Murphy, do you really want our schools to be like prisons? Do you really think this reporter was concerned for the students safety. This is no different then if this reporter entered a movie theater, or bank or school and yelled "fire" just to check their safety protocol. What he did was dangers oh and stupid.

KITTY
KITTY

Kudos to Ian Madden for exposing KSDK's sleaziness in news reporting. Now he needs to do one more thing: Encourage EVERYONE to boycott KSDK!

Cindy Haferkamp
Cindy Haferkamp

Right Pattie Van Horn Murphy..What if it was a person who was really there to do harm?

Pattie Van Horn Murphy
Pattie Van Horn Murphy

This is ridiculous! Kirkwood High should do a better job of protecting their kids!! Stop blaming the reporters that Caught You and fix it..

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