Tuesday, May 8, 2007

Luxor Bomb Question

Andy in St. Joseph, Mo., wrote:

Do the casinos fear that the story of the bombing murder on the Luxor Parking lot yesterday will be bad for business? In any other city in the U.S., the authorities would have media crawling all over them if someone set off a bomb in a parking lot. Are Las vegas media going to allow this to be suppressed? Have they really lost perspective and see it as a non-story? Have they been merely subdued?

Now, I'm no stranger to critiquing the media, so believe me when I say that the media was all over the Luxor, MGM Mirage and the Metropolitan Police yesterday. Newsweek, in fact, sent in a stringer to Vegas from L.A. because I was out of town. It was played large on the front page of the Review-Journal as it should have been. So I don't really understand the question.

I think what we have here is an unusual murder in an unusual location, but I don't think there's that much more to it. And interesting how if the media is careful not to sensationalize, they're accused of wimping out. A bomb went off, a man is dead, there's one witness, the cops are working on it. There's only so much the property can say -- it's not their fault or their investigation, it's the cops and ATF -- and from what I can tell, the MGM Mirage folks are painstakingly answering every phone call and email. In fact, one of my sources emailed me just to make sure the Newsweek stringer was legit and not someone pretending to take my place.

While you may think that the media would be more aggressive if it was, say, in the parking garage at the Hancock Building in Chicago at 4 a.m., I tend to doubt it. You do with what you have. The flip side of this is, if it had happened in a parking lot in Henderson, Nev., you all would probably never have heard a thing about it and Newsweek surely wouldn't have sent someone to fill in for me. Not to mention, if it was a shooting or a stabbing in the Luxor lot, it wouldn't have been much of a thing, either.

I could be wrong. But I can't see where anyone's acted inappropriately in all of this.

That said, looks like I'll be offline for most of the day.