How to Get In and Out of Journalism Alive

There are two ways to "get into" journalism. One: Go to journalism school and rise through the ranks of the establishment. This is dumb. The other way: Fly off to a war zone and start reportin'! This is also dumb.

The New York Times—a place full of people who pursued Journo Career Path #1takes a look at the case of Amanda Lindhout, a wild and fancy-free young would-be journalist who saved up money from a waitressing job in Canada to fly off and report from Somalia, freelance. Hardcore! The she was kidnapped and held for ransom and "abused" for 15 months. Not so cool!

So the story is all, "on the one hand, [blah blah journalism training and preparation and a big news organization are all so important and you can't have amateurs running around, blah blah], and on the other hand, [obligatory nod to the pep of the young go-getters]." But all the wavering is unnecessary. To be a journalist, you don't need fancy training, or fancy technology, or a fancy news organization, or fancy "intelligence":

[Amanda Lindhout's] limited finances also restricted the number of armed guards she was able to hire. Journalists from large news organizations will hire up to 10 gunmen, a private army of sorts, at a total cost of $300 to $1,000 a day.

All you need to be a journalist are plenty of guns.
[Related. Pic via]