Thursday, September 20, 2007

Media Frenzy

If you get run over by a Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railway freight or passenger train you might get a minor mention on the state page of the newspapers. The TV news stations might give you ten seconds of time between their sex crime stories, unless your car is still on fire and then you get 15 seconds.

But if you are run over by the new Rail Runner commuter train you will get a full page front story with a color picture and four minutes live coverage on the TV stations. What is it with this media frenzy over a visionary new way of getting around the Rio Grande Valley? If a train hits a car with a loss of life it is a terrible thing, but why is it more terrible if the new Rail Runner is involved? There have been trains going down that same track since the 1880's or so and we have always been taught to look both ways when crossing a track.

Could it be that the media sense that some people think the Rail Runner is a dumb idea that costs too much? It is a progressive move to build this new infrastructure and maybe our arch conservatives just don't like the idea that it wont pay for itself. Well, no public transit pays for itself. And neither does the commercial trucking industry, which we all build highways for. But that doesn't mean they should be done away with either. They serve a larger public purpose in our economy.

1 comment:

DRP said...

The Rail Runner is a good idea for NM. AZ is working on commuter trains between Tucson and Phoenix, which are long overdue and badly needed, and will be popular with the people.