Where is the accountability in news reporting? NBC ran a story this morning with the headline, “beating of US Student spotlights violence in Mexico.” Matt Lauer led into the story stating, “Tens of thousands of college students will be taking off for Spring Break in the coming weeks, one of the most popular destination is Mexico, but with drug related violence on the rise in Mexico the US State Department has again issued a travel warning.” The reporter was LIVE from the beach in Cancun. She started her story, “it all feels very care free, but the fact is we are not far from the ongoing violence of the Mexican Drug War. This morning one young man’s story exposes the potential dark side of what’s usually a laid back week. “The story continues with images of college students partying and drinking. Then the reporter sits down with aspiring law student Zeke Rucker, The caption below reads Spring Break Safety, Concerns for Students heading to Mexico. What happened to Zeke on Spring Break is awful. After a night at the clubs Zeke “feel asleep” on a lounge chair outside by the pool. He remembers nothing of what happened next. Zeke was found by the pool bloody unconscious with multiple skull fractures. To this day the case is unsolved. There are no suspects, and no idea what happened. Zeke’s dreams of law school were put on hold while he recovered.
Now, what happened to this kid is horrific. So, before everyone starts commenting on how I’m being insensitive please understand my heart goes out to Zeke and I’m glad he has recovered. But I’m so tired of the media reporting half-truths and spinning stories to promote fear and boost their ratings. The chances of this kid’s beating being Mexican Drug Cartel related are 1% at best and here’s why. Security at Barcelo Tucancun is good. While it is a party hotel during Spring Break it still remains a budget friendly property for families the rest of the year. You can’t come on the property without a Barceló wristband identifying you as a guest. It is likely however that Zeke got drunk, flirted with someone’s girlfriend and got beat up by jealous boyfriend. If you wanted to accurately report Zeke’s story it should have read don’t drink so much you can’t make it back to your room. Spring Break safety in Mexico is the same as it is here. Be aware of your surroundings, don’t drink so much you’re not in control, and don’t go out at night alone.
The travel advisory is not even for Quintana Roo, the state that Cancun resides in. While the reporter finally made mention that there was no such advisory in effect for the Cancun area, she then proceeded to tell us how unsafe Puerto Vallarta is because some cruise ship passengers got robbed. Never mind Puerto Vallarta is 1552 miles away from Cancun. I wonder how many people were robbed in Houston last weekend. Over 21.5 Million people safely visited Mexico last year. It’s time for the media to start reporting all facts and stop promoting propaganda.
Shame on you Today Show.- Jacque
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