“Yes, I’ll admit it, your photograph paints a lucid picture of the shit storm we find ourselves in,” the editor said. “Unfortunately we can’t use it, as it shows a violent confrontation between the police and the people that makes it look like we live in a police state.”
“But that’s the point. Over the past four years our country has been transformed from a beacon of democracy into an fascist autocracy,” the photographer said. “If your newspaper’s mission is to show the truth to your readers, you have to publish this image. It’s your duty as part of the fourth estate.
“In normal times, I would agree with everything you’re saying, but these are not normal times,” the editor said. “These are extraordinarily abnormal times, and the fourth estate is dead. We can’t publish this photo if we don’t want the government to shut us down. We have no choice but to pacify the demands of those in power.”
“Then I have no option,” the photographer said, “but to post this photo myself on Twitter and Instagram. It will probably get more views than it would if you published it in your newspaper. This is the problem in our country. People like you cower and do that madman’s bidding instead of revealing to the world what is really going on.”
Written for these daily prompts: The Daily Spur (photograph), Ragtag Daily Prompt (lucid), Word of the Day Challenge (storm), Your Daily Word Prompt (choice), and Fandango’s One-Word Challenge (pacify). Also for Fandango’s Flash Fiction Challenge. Photo credit: Corey Agopian at Unsplash.