‘The enemy’: Notes on the Germanwings crash

Cunning Hired Knaves

The media coverage of the Germanwings crash is shocking. I had 2FM on in the car on the school run and Tubridy addressed the issue of mental health.  Clearly the broader coverage -about the co-pilot’s supposed mental state and constructed history of mental health- poses difficulties for RTÉ’s usual light entertainment/lifestyle coverage, since it has been placing major emphasis, for some time now, on mental health and matters such as suicide and depression. Tubridy expressed concern that the coverage and debate might have the effect of giving people with mental health problems “a bad name”, but took pains to emphasise that what had happened in the case of Germanwings was a “freak” occurrence – he repeated the word “freak” twice. I went into the filling station and had a look at the newspaper headlines – the stand was a mix of “maniac”, “depression”, “jilted”, “murderer”. Apparently the co-pilot was…

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