The Stayton at Museum Way, Fort Worth’s resort-style retirement community, recently hosted the legendary Watergate journalist Carl Bernstein for the community’s Red Carpet Speaker Series™ event. Special guests and residents of The Stayton had the opportunity to hear firsthand about Bernstein’s unique experiences throughout his career as a journalist, author and political analyst. He discussed the current state of journalism and the need for contextual reporting as well as his personal perspective on the increasing dysfunction within America’s governmental institutions. He addressed the way lessons of Watergate resonate to this day and defined good journalism as “finding the best attainable version of the truth.” Bernstein’s books, reporting, and commentary have exposed the inner workings of government, politics and the hidden stories of Washington and its leaders. He believes journalists today, as well as the public at large, should ask the tough questions and focus on the common good and national interest when seeking facts. However, it is not enough simply to publish facts; reporters should do the research required to have context behind the facts as well.
“The Stayton was pleased to host such an iconic reporter and impressive individual. This was a remarkable event for our guests and residents to enjoy,” said Scott Polzin, executive director at The Stayton. “From the very opening of his presentation, we were all captivated by what Mr. Bernstein had to share regarding journalism today, the investigative reporting he and Bob Woodward did that led to President Richard Nixon’s resignation and his take on journalism today.”
The Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist/author spent time meeting with the guests before and after his presentation, allowing time for photos and signing copies of his books, including All the President’s Men and The Final Days. Due to the timely press conference Hillary Rodham Clinton held regarding the use of her private email account and the fact that Bernstein’s A Woman in Charge has become the standard biography of her life, he also spent time discussing his perspective on her background and the way she rightfully owed everyone an explanation about this issue. Bernstein allowed time for Q&A with the audience after his presentation and concluded by discussing the most important role of journalism today: to determine what is news or should be deemed “a story,” with the essential factor being context.
“It was insightful and fascinating for all to hear directly from one of the two key investigative reporters of the historical Watergate story. Then having the chance to hear Bernstein’s perspective on the timely issue surrounding Hillary Clinton added another layer of relevancy and interest to this speaker series event,” said Polzin.