Viewers debate Sean Penn's journalistic ethics

Penn's failure to ask El Chapo questions about his crimes, then submitting the story for his approval is not journalism, says a viewer

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On Sunday's 60 Minutes, Sean Penn told Charlie Rose that he considers himself an "experiential" journalist - one who doesn't need to hold El Chapo accountable for his cartel's reputation for brutal murders and drug trafficking.

"Mmm, yes you do...that's what journalism is," quipped the host of Comedy Central's "The Nightly Show," Larry Wilmore. "That's like showing up for your first day at Taco Bell and saying, 'I don't make tacos.'"

One viewer objected to Penn giving the Mexican drug lord veto power over the story's publication:

Failing to ask obvious questions, regardless of the circumstances, then submitting the interview for the gangster's approval - Penn can call it what he likes, but it is not journalism.

Posted by David Ransom on Friday, January 15, 2016

Some viewers dished out low blows:

60 Minutes took some of that heat as well:

And there were a few zingers for Charlie Rose:

This interview seems less about Sean Penn's meeting with El Chapo than it does about Charlie Rose accusing Penn of being...

Posted by Adam Zanzie on Monday, January 18, 2016

Unfortunately, Charlie Rose didn't "get it". Penn's point was that "journalism" is not doing what it is meant to do - inform - and in this case, he was talking about the war on drugs. Rose failed.

Posted by Jackie Newberry on Monday, January 18, 2016

But some viewers did not fail to forget Penn's portrayal of Jeff Spicoli in the 1982 film, "Fast Times at Ridgemont High":

Amateur or not, the actor managed to find and talk with one of the most wanted men in the world -- and that, one tweet pointed out, is more than can be said for professional journalists and law enforcement on both sides of the border:


60 Minutes' "Fan-tastic" Post of The Week: