P.O. Box 20302
Springfield, IL 62708
August 22, 1995
The State Journal-Register
One Copley Plaza
Springfield, IL 62705
To the Editor:
I would like to congratulate and thank the State Journal-Register for remembering that journalists are supposed to investigate stories, not just report them.
I am specifically referring to the recent discovery of a young boy's body and a local psychic's claim that she helped in that endeavor ("Psychic Alexander takes credit," August 16).
Channels 20 and 49 both aired interviews with this "psychic" as part of their top story that night. Neither even offered the possibility that she had perhaps not been as helpful as she claimed, even though both your paper and WMAY radio noted that she had given several incorrect predictions. Instead, both stations reported what she claimed, without bothering to investigate those specific claims or "psychic" claims in general. Indeed, they both lived up to my statement as printed in your article: "The coincidental hits turn into media coverage, while erroneous predictions are quickly forgotten."
Had a politician made outlandish claims, surely those stations would have questioned them, but when a woman claims to have solved hundreds of crimes because she was struck by lightning, those same news programs happily ignore the most basic tenets of journalism.
One of the main reasons the Rational Examination Association of Lincoln Land (REALL) exists is to disseminate information to the public and media. If anybody would like more information on psychics or related topics, they can contact REALL at P.O. Box 20302, Springfield, IL 62708.
David Bloomberg, Chairman
Association of Lincoln Land