To start with, I am not writing anything political here today. Just thought I'd let you know.
And also, I am not going to post a link to a photo or a story (which you will understand later).
That said, I am going to relate a story, as provided by a certain online publication which I will also not mention (again, I will explain later my reasons).
A woman was walking around Washington, DC last week. She likes to take pictures. She is from nevada. So, here she was, minding her own business in the nation's capital, snapping away. Innocent. Right?
Of course it was. I take tons of pictures all the time. Some for work, some for friends, and some just for the hell of it to see what comes out.
But then, as she was trying to get close to a national monument but was unable to, she spies a young couple. She wonders if he is about to propose. He does. Oh how sweet.
And that would be it. A little snooping, a curiosity to see what is going on around her. We all do it.
Then, later as she looks at the pictures, she see how's lovely they are. She decides she is going to try and contact these people. She wants them to have this lovely reminder of a special moment.
Okay, not really bad there. I even thought for a brief second of helping share the information within my community of friends who might be able to get in touch with these folks.
Then I thought for a few seconds more and came to a different thought.
And here is where I and many around this world will probably come to a disagreement.
This woman, this photographer, this innocent person who then took a definite step across a line of decency, blundered. I will not ascribe any nefarious purpose to her actions. SOme might, but I prefer to think she did not think things through.
Many people don't (and, as I said I will not link this to any political correlations).
This young couple, in a very, very private moment, were intruded upon. Innocently enough.
But then this photographer, without regard to their privacy, invaded it by putting out a picture of them on the web, via this publication, who is quite disreputable at times (my opinion here), published it. And thousands are now circulating this picture around the world, for all to see.
The photographer states she couldn't get close to the monument. Why? And if she couldn't, how did they? Maybe because he got special permission. Who knows. But if she couldn't get close to them, there had to be a reason.
And if they were that far from typical prying eyes, maybe they wanted to keep it a private moment. They have that right. They did not capture their proposal and put it on YouTube. They did not have anyone else there to share the moment. The moment was theirs. And theirs alone.
Who is she to have invaded their private moment?
And who is she to have published the picture of this private moment, without their consent. The institution that this young man belongs to refused to publish the picture because they did not have the consent of the couple. And they were right in doing so.
Then she goes to this publication, who (again in my opinion) are quite disreputable, and they publish without consent. What gives them that right? The people involved are not public figures. They are private citizens exercising their rights to privacy. There is no "news" to be had, no information to be gleaned and disseminated to the public in the picture.
This young couple was not engaged in any criminal activity. Nor were they doing anything that involved the world at large. Nothing they were doing related to news of any kind. Except maybe the personal kind, involving family and friends.
Maybe one or both are still in the process of a divorce. Maybe one or both of their families disapprove. Maybe their friends don't approve. Or maybe everything is right in their world and they are as happy as two people can be that have found each other. But this is no one's business but their own.
I will not further invade their privacy by telling you the details. These are readily available thanks to the photographer and the publication. But I will respect them their privacy. I will not tell you the name of the photographer nor the publication involved.
My point here is that people do not think things through. They live in their own small little world and do what they do only as it affects them. Without regard to others.
There is way too much of that kind of thinking in this country, in this world.
We all need to start thinking about what we do as it affects other people. Base our ideas of action on our own existence, yes. This is only human nature. But if our actions will affect others, we need to decide how before we act.
In the situation being discussed here, this photographer should have thought about how her invasion of this young couple's privacy would affect them. I'm not saying she didn't, I am just presuming that she did so without thinking about this. She could have made a plea, with the details only, to find this couple and give them the photographs. There was no need to publish the photo. That is where she crossed the line from this being a story of love and sweetness and all the warm emotions she assures us are her motives. That is where she made it into an invasion of privacy. And the publication who went ahead and published the photo are as equally guilty of invasion of privacy. They should have followed suit with the institution who would not publish the picture. They should have respected the right to privacy. They should have kept the picture taker from crossing that line.
But they, like the photographer, only thought of their own interests and not those of the young couple. They thought only of sensationalizing a personal story.
We all need to think about what we do if others are going to be affected by our decisions. If we decide to take action, regardless of others, then that is our prerogative. But we should be willing to sustain the consequences of our actions.
I know you are all expecting me to make this political. But I said I wouldn't. Those of you who have read my writings before will be able to make any connections I have left out here. Those of you who have not should only take away from this what I have explained.
Thsi photographer was wrong in publicly exposing this couple's private moment. The publication was wrong (and in my opinion more culpable because they should know better).
As usual, you may agree with me or disagree. That is your prerogative. This is just me, as always, Thinking Out Loud.
Have a great day.