Sunday, August 01, 2010

I can't say I'm surprised...

First, read this article. Can you tell what's missing? The holes aren't just in the article either––almost every comment that mentioned any of those holes has also been "moderated." The Deseret News echo-chamber apparatchiki once again behave with all the journalistic integrity of Stephen Glass.

Enjoy this sampling of comments that the moderator felt were allowable:

LJ | 7:46 a.m. July 30, 2010
I also choose to remember the good in people. Thank you Deseret News for showing respect to George's children and grand children at this sensitive time.

JBs | 7:54 a.m. July 31, 2010
Good post, Tony. And a very classy way to handle this, DesNews. Thanks!

dung beetle | 8:33 a.m. July 31, 2010
Yes, George lost his way and the Lord and the Church lost a great servant when he would not retrace his footsteps. He has to deal with the consequences. We can mourn his losses (and ours) without remembering the ugliness. Let the Trib deal with that - they do it so well.

daizy | 10:45 a.m. July 31, 2010
This is nothing to make an issue of. Stop this!

countrygirl | 6:12 p.m. July 31, 2010
my sympathy and prayers go to the family of Elder Lee. There are so many positive and uplifting thoughts floating around 'out there', so I choose to think positive and uplifting thoughts. When I leave this earth, I would sure love it, if people remember the good things I might have said or done. I too have a very dear person in mind, who was instrumental in teaching my husband the Gospel and thereby changing his life forever for the better, this person some not so smart things later in his life, but that doesn't detract from the good he did for us and others. God knows our hearts, he knew us before we were born.

Californian#1@94131 | 7:37 p.m. July 31, 2010
The Trib and most of its forum posters never miss a chance to heap mud on anyone or anything Mormon, and some of the posters here ought to go and stay over there.

Just lovely. I particularly like the shrill demand from "daizy." On the website, it's impossible to see what got her so upset, since almost every comment that even mentioned the "issue" she so disliked is now no longer there. Simply put, it is not the responsibility of journalism to "choose to remember the good [only]," to never remember "the ugliness," or "to think positive and uplifting thoughts." Nor is the suppression of pertinent information "classy." To report facts is not to "heap mud," and the facts (that the ex-General Authority in question was excommunicated and later convicted of molesting a little girl) absolutely ARE something "to make an issue of."

The article was not a eulogy. It was a NEWS item, printed in a publication that is still (ostensibly) a NEWSpaper. The omissions in the article were not minor––they were like writing a book on the Bush administration, but never mentioning 9/11 or the Iraq War.

It is disappointing that the Deseret News has chosen to behave as though there is no elephant in the room, because now that elephant casts a substantial shadow over the question of their professional ethics.

I like the adage that (good) "fiction uses lies to tell the truth." Too often, the Deseret News does precisely the opposite.

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