Thursday, December 11, 2008

It was just a matter of time…

For as long as I have considered myself to be an accomplished author, a juxtaposing journalist – a perennial penner of prolific prose, if you will – I knew that one day my general disregard for all things politically correct would catch up to me.

It didn’t happen when I wrote about illegally hunting from under a deck; not when I articulated my hatred for those who recycle paper, nor when I engaged my latest sporting venture.

Those all could have easily led to what happened recently: Somebody threatening legal action against the mighty Jake Donahue … for something I wrote!

You see, those first three examples were articles I penned or activities I’ve engaged in under the sheer umbrella of eliciting a response – whether positive or negative, I indeed crave the attention of my peers: not exactly a surprise to those who know me.

However, this recent tirade was far from that. In all actuality, I was more excited about my latest journalistic endeavor than creating any of my memorable sports columns. I have never written a news article, and this month was my first.

Moreover, I’ve always been a steadfast pupil of the school: Go Big or Go Home.

So when our student body president resigned from ASNIC in October, (citing “personal reasons”), for the first time in my newspaper career I felt the need to actually investigate further. Rumors flourished about the true reasons leading to his resignation, and the most commonly heard gossip proved to be the sole nugget of truth I sought.

I used this nugget to gain the trust of somebody very close to ASNIC, and thus discovered the true reasoning for Austin Folnagy’s resignation: smoking marijuana on a leadership conference in Portland. My anonymous source was fantastic, and gave me ALL the information I needed to get started on my first ever investigative article.

I attempted to contact the new president of ASNIC through an e-mail, and he ignored me. I sent a list of questions I hoped he could answer, either by e-mailing me back, meeting me in person or simply calling me. I let him knew that an anonymous source gave me all the details about what really happened.

Alas, no response.

I phoned his advisor – nothing. I finally got hold of the vice president for student services, who told me that because of some FERPA law, he could neither confirm nor deny any disciplinary action was taken.

I was pissed.

(This law he was referring to has suddenly been brought to my attention as something that only protects grades – and thus a bogus excuse from the administration to limit their involvement in this story. I still need to research that…).

Needless to say, certain people did not wantCube me to write about the true reasons that led to Folnagy’s resignation. What’s more, I finally received my response from the current president just three days before the article was set to print: He was announcing his resignation!

This whole thing just took a crazy turn.

You see, the entire ASNIC senate was on that trip in Portland where Folnagy smoked weed. My source told me that Folnagy was not the only one, either. So now I had ANOTHER ASNIC president resigning for “personal reasons,” and thus piqued my interest extremely.

However, as this new president would not communicate with me, I was left with only being able to write a short infobox of information concerning his resignation.

Personally, I think this all led to one of my best-designed front pages.

However, now somebody is threatening legal action for this hodgepodge of debauchery. I didn’t realize that stating the facts could lead to being sued. What’s worse, this is the first time I truly am 100% confident in every single word I wrote. Both my articles were printed exactly the way they should have been, and I will not back down.

Printing a retraction would probably get me out of this entire mess. But what would I retract? There is nothing for me to apologize about, for I simply STATED FACTS. Should I write an article of apology, stating that it’s not my fault our student government is full of retards who can’t smoke a joint out of state without getting caught? Or that I’m sorry our student presidents are not clear enough in their continuing resignations?

One thing I truly am sorry about is that these people have the gall to come after me.

If I end up going to court, I will win. I actually hope I go to court so I can prove to the entire college that I am not some dim-witted, fly-by-night managing editor only seeking to produce a collegiate tabloid.

I am right. It’s sometimes rare, no doubt, but this time I am irrefutably, undeniably 100% correct.

And I will not lose.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Police Ride Along

I rode around with a cop for 4 hours Friday night and got some pretty cool pictures (for me, anyways…). But it turned out the cop I was scheduled to ride with was actually a buddy of mine from middle school, whom I hadn’t seen in like 10 years.

But, oh wait, it gets even better…

A week before my ride along, he pulled a dude over in his car for something serious. When he asked for the kid’s ID, he was given an Oregon drivers license that showcases the name: JAKE DONAHUE.

I guess this kid stole my old license and was buying beer with it all year, then tried to pose as me before getting arrested – by the same cop I was scheduled to ride with!