UI Murder Suspect Eating at the Mad Greek Restaurant Is Not Newsworthy
Commentary by Andy Pope
Editor’s Note: Earlier this month People Magazine reported Bryan Kohberger, the suspect in the University of Idaho murders, had eaten at the Mad Greek restaurant in Moscow, Idaho, where two of the victims worked. The owner of the restaurant had disputed the report.
For me, the issue is not whether or not Bryan Kohberger ate at the Mad Greek restaurant.
He is a vegan. Vegans are likely to order vegan burgers in restaurants that provide them. It’s likely he ate there, at least once or twice. It’s also likely nobody even noticed anything weird or different about him.
So I don’t know if Kohberger frequenting the Mad Greek can be proven or disproven. People Magazine says their sources are reliable. Oh? Have they proven it? Why do people believe the great People Magazine over the person who actually owns the restaurant?
But like I said, whether Kohberger ate at the Mad Greek is not the issue.
The issue — as far as I’m concerned — is that Kohberger has waived rights to due process for six months. A Moscow, Idaho, resident would hope that the media would lay off our fair city for six months.
Instead, the media has turned on their focus on Moscow. They have done this for the simple reason that the public is craving the information and they have to keep it happening — in order to keep making money off of it.
What is in reality a tragedy that has affected us all — a bulk trauma from which we of Moscow need to recover and heal — is being increasingly portrayed as a dramatic soap opera in national media.
This is all across the board, by the way. As I filter through the sources, I find no distinct difference in integrity among any of them. The thirst to sensationalize glares equally among every video on my YouTube display.
Personally, I’m laying off Kohberger news for six months — except for an occasional peak here and there. I see no reason to indulge any of this until he is back in court. Besides, if I persist, I’m only in danger of posting something much more strident within the next few weeks.
The trajectory of the past two months strongly suggests that the situation for the people of Moscow Idaho is not going to get better. It’s going to get worse. And someone among us — at some point — is going to have to speak out.
Andy Pope is a freelance writer currently residing in Moscow, Idaho, where he is a member of Moscow First Presbyterian Church. His work on social justice has appeared in Classism Exposed in Boston, Berkeleyside in Berkeley, California, and also in the Bay Area newspaper Street Spirit, where his regular column, Homeless No More, encourages those making the transition from homelessness to housing. An accomplished pianist and lifelong musical theatre person, Andy is also the author of “Eden in Babylon,” a musical about youth homelessness in urban America.