The mass shooting in Buffalo, New York, is a tragedy that brings more and more sadness as we learn about the people who were needlessly killed by a self-proclaimed white supremacist.
It is understandable for those who were present for the shooting or had family members and friends killed in the attack to need time to process this horrific event. But the CEO of Vox Media, whose brand encompasses Vox, SB Nation, Eater, Polygon, New York, and The Verge, sent a memo to employees on Monday seemingly making the tragedy all about them.
In the memo, CEO Jim Bankoff stated non-essential meetings would be canceled or rescheduled for a few days. In addition, he asked other managers to do the same and staff can "take the time and space that you need."
In the wake of the Buffalo shooting, Vox Media C.E.O. Jim Bankoff sent a memo to employees on Monday morning saying that he's cancelling/re-scheduling non-essential meetings for a few days and asking others to do the same so that staff can "take the time and space that you need."— Jeremy Barr (@jeremymbarr) May 16, 2022
Naturally, the idea of journalists who were not directly affected by the shooting needing a break from doing their jobs on a big story was met with mockery by Twitter users.
I’m sorry but if you weren’t personally affected by the tragedy get up and go to work— Alexander Bradley (@DonTywin75) May 16, 2022
Dear lord, people in this country have become soft.— Carol Scott (@itzblue) May 16, 2022
Ah’mazing. Journalists too fragile, too emotional to do their actual job…cover the news. Just incredible.— Mark Ashworth & the Wreckoning Bros Podcast (@marklarflash) May 16, 2022
My god... https://t.co/pk1aLCi4gl— Stephen L. Miller (@redsteeze) May 16, 2022
How to make yourself the victim of a mass shooting when you weren't anywhere in the vicinity of it: https://t.co/0CeeLm1075— Matt Walsh (@MattWalshBlog) May 16, 2022
Reporters who can’t emotionally handle the news. https://t.co/9zTMzDgW0S— Leighton Woodhouse (@lwoodhouse) May 16, 2022
While it is a good idea to maintain the morale of your workforce, examples like this expose one's sense of inflated importance to take the day off from your job as a reporter to "process" an event that you did not experience. Covering the news can often be depressing given bad news is what people want to know about the most. But it is also voluntary, no one is forced to become a journalist, and if hearing about bad news is enough to take off of work, you should find a new profession. Maybe learn to code.