The Declarer (Floyd McWilliams' Blog)

Sunday, March 14, 2004


Today's San Jose Mercury News web page has the following teaser in the portion of the page that one can see without scrolling:


Debating Walmart

Gilroy must decide if retailer does community more harm than good.


No one could accuse the Merc of bias for this neutral formulation, could they? But what if we substituted another subject for "the retailer"?


Gilroy must decide if adult bookstores do community more harm than good.


Doesn't roll off the tongue quite so easily, now does it? Try this:


Gilroy must decide if allowing the sale of The Communist Manifesto does community more harm than good.


I think quite a few people would object to that. How about:


Gilroy must decide if Mormons do community more harm than good.


I don't like that one at all.

The Mercury News would be well served to report facts, rather than trying to shape stories to suit its prejudices.


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