For the last few years I have been preaching about the plight of journalism, banging the drum to sound the alarm for anyone who would listen.

I have repeatedly pleaded for all of us to support our local newspapers. I have brought attention to mass layoffs, restructurings and sales in the industry. I have lamented what the vultures have done to community newspapers across the country.

For the most part, like many others who take on this fight, I’ve failed to make much of a dent. And the losses keep coming.

Just this year (so far): CNN cut 100 jobs…


Photo by mike gieson from FreeImages

Memory is a strange thing. Never blessed with a photographic memory, as I have gotten older, I realize what I do remember are bits and pieces of things that when put together paint a picture of a day.

Even those that change the world. Even one as monumental as 9/11.

I don’t remember, for instance, if I was supposed to be off that Tuesday or simply working a later shift. What I do remember is I was sleeping in — something I could do as a young man that I could never do today.

I was awakened by my girlfriend…


Left to right: NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, Afghan President Ashraf Ghani and Defense Secretary Dr. Mark T. Esper prepare to speak in Kabul, Afghanistan, Feb. 29, 2020, regarding a joint declaration that could result in all foreign troops leaving Afghanistan within 14 months. NATO photo.

A country is rapidly falling apart and helicopters are evacuating the last Americans from the embassy.

We’ve been here before. Anyone with a rudimentary knowledge of history has seen that image, but this isn’t black and white, and this isn’t Vietnam. This is the reboot.

As of this writing, reports have Afghan president Ashraf Ghani fleeing Afghanistan and the Taliban demanding the “unconditional surrender” of the government. America’s longest war finally heads to the inevitable conclusion that should have been so easy to see 20 years ago.

But it was a different time, and it wasn’t fashionable to question then…


For a few fleeting moments prior to Major League Baseball’s all star break, it all started to come together for my Phightin’ Phils.

The lineup was finally healthy and the bats were making contact. The suspect bullpen found some footing as young Ranger Suarez was finding success after being plugged into the team’s closer role. The Phillies had battled to a 45–45 mark, and due to the chaotic nature that is the National League East, had, even at .500, found themselves within shouting distance of first place.

Never at a loss to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory, however…


Photo by Keith Syvinski from FreeImages

Do I have your attention?

Once upon a time, when people browsed through a newspaper page by page, headlines were designed to catch the eye. To convey a taste of what the article was about and draw you in and read the full story.

In today’s world of feeds and apps, headlines may be the only blurb a reader takes away. So I didn’t bury the lede. I gave you the whole thing at the top.

Your local news source is not in good shape. It is dying.

What makes me say this?

I read a fascinating article the other…


Photo by Bob Smith from FreeImages

Conan O’Brien bid farewell to late-night television this week (at least for the moment) and in many ways, it feels like the end of an era.

He debuted late in the world Johnny built — 1993 — as the replacement for David Letterman. The “Late Night” host, long considered Carson’s natural successor for the “Tonight Show” gig, had just been “Leno-ed” and was taking his talents to CBS.

Lorne Michaels contacted O’Brien, who had worked on “Saturday Night Live” as a writer prior to writing for “The Simpsons” with an idea to produce the new Late Night. …


Like many with an interest in sports, I was captivated by a pair of feats that bracketed the week: Phil Mickelson’s PGA Championship victory last weekend and the win by Hélio Castroneves in Sunday’s Indianapolis 500.

Mickelson had last won a major in 2013 and at 50 was starting to turn up on the Champions Tour — the PGA’s senior circuit — often a sign of acceptance by golfers that the PGA Tour is a young man’s game. His 6-under on the Ocean Course at Kiawah Island made him the oldest golfer to win a major. …


A lot of words ran through my head Wednesday as hooligans breached the Capitol: Sedition and insurrection among them. A few I won’t repeat. I’ve become quite fond of “putsch,” it has a certain fitting Germanic flair.

But I’ve held off putting into words my reaction to the events of that day. Far more of a hothead in my youth, I’ve learned over the years to wait and let cooler heads prevail, even when that head might be my own.

Looking back now, with the benefit of time, I realize my primary reactions are anger and sadness.

The sadness, that…


As I get older, a lot of memories start to become “generic.” By that, I mean that I remember attending assemblies in elementary school, but not necessarily specific ones. But one I do remember sparked a life-long love affair with minor league baseball.

We had just watched a Phillies “season in review” film in the “All-Purpose Room” — part cafeteria, part assembly hall with stage, part gym — when the “Sillie Phillie” emerged from behind the screen. He was some sort of red, Phanatic-like creation that served as the mascot for the Reading Phillies. …


​I spotted an article the other day where someone lamented the quickest way to shut down a discussion on the pandemic was to refer to “the new normal.”

How true, though I would argue “out of an abundance of caution” is a close second.

Any way you slice it, we are tired. Just how tired likely depends on where you live and how close to home COVID-19 has hit.

Here in West Virginia, we began to reopen the economy in late spring. Many were apprehensive, but it went fairly smoothly. I’m not a big fan of Gov. Jim Justice, but…

Christopher Six

Newspaper refugee sharing original commentary at christophersix.substack.com and the best in journalism daily at paper.li/ChristopherSix#/

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