What to do about NPR’s national political correspondent Mara Liasson?
This is a regular issue raised by some NPR listeners who object to Liasson’s second role as a contributor to Fox News. They say that she, like Fox, tilts to the right.
“Would you please consider letting Mara Liasson go?” wrote listener Michael Duba in what is typical of the several complaints that come in almost every time Liasson does a story. “Her affiliation with the Tea Party channel and willingness to just go along with whatever is said by others on the fake news shows she appears on has ruined whatever small remaining shreds of credibility she had left.”
If you have no cred with the left, you have no cred, as far as the left is concerned. For an NPR listener, that makes her not merely incredible, but unsustainable. So what then was her point in twitting this?
Biggest antifa rally in history. https://t.co/ypa46PvYx1
— Mara Liasson (@MaraLiasson) June 6, 2020
Was this pandering to the idiots who, despite the gravest of sincerity, lack the grasp to realize that calling a group “Antifa” doesn’t make them anti-fascists? Or was this her snarky reference to all the children trying to push the absurd notion that soldiers in World War II were fighting fascism and, so, Antifa today somehow takes credence as their descendants? Or did she mean it, with neither irony nor snark involved?
After the “news” fiasco at the New York Times over the publication of the Tom Cotton op-ed, with staff complaining that “Running this puts Black @NYTimes staff in danger,” an assertion that apparently makes sense in the twisted minds of indoctrinated children, the Times capitulated to the angry whims of their dumbest people. James Bennett’s big score was turned on its head, no matter how many clicks the op-ed got
Now it’s the Philly Inquirer’s turn to be taken over the Flies. They ran an op-ed under the headline “Buildings Matter, too.” The argument was sensitive and woke, as one would expect. The buildings being destroyed by rioters and looters were the buildings owned, needed, used by the same people for whom the protesters cries. Even if buildings don’t matter as much as people, that doesn’t mean they don’t matter.
Does the destruction of buildings matter when black Americans are being brazenly murdered in cold blood by police and vigilantes?
Trying to blunt the simplistic binary that’s seized every iota of the twitter generation’s consciousness wasn’t to ignore the most serious problems, but expand awareness of the banal reality that actions had consequences that would harm many, including those they were pretending to save. In other words, it was an extremely sensitive op-ed toward the marginalized.
Except for the title. Buildings matter, too? Oh no, you don’t. Black lives matter, and it’s untouchable. Why not put on blackface or wear your Klan hood while eating black babies while writing that headline, Stan Wischnowski.
Stan Wischnowski, the top editor of The Philadelphia Inquirer, resigned on Saturday, days after an article with the headline “Buildings Matter, Too,” on the effects of civil unrest on the city’s buildings, led to a walkout by dozens of staff members.
The day after the Inquirer article was published, the paper’s top editors, including Mr. Wischnowski, who had worked at the paper for 20 years, issued an apology that appeared on its website.
The apology now appears in an Editor’s Note preceding the column.
Editor’s Note: A headline published in Tuesday’s Inquirer was offensive, inappropriate and we should not have printed it. We deeply regret that we did. We also know that an apology on its own is not sufficient. We need to do better. We’ve heard that loud and clear, including from our own staff. We will. A detailed explanation of how we got this so wrong can be found here.
Don’t buildings matter, too? Who cares, when the real issue is the violation of the sacred words. And it cost Stan Wischnowski his job, which has been given to a quasi-sexual one-legged woman of color 2019 Oberlin graduate to be named later.
Not too long ago, I urged support for newspapers. They did the heavy lifting of finding and reporting the news that a guy like me would then parse for meaning. Without factually accurate, and somewhat complete, reporting, we’re left with the national media providing such deep contextual thoughts as
What is white privilege? What questions should white Americans be asking? Two academics weigh in
Is this news? It is now.
In my fertile imagination, I picture Stan Wischnowski in a meeting following the outrage, thinking to himself,
“I’ve spent my life believing in equality, in thinking hard about how to best achieve it and best serve everyone, particularly the marginalized of my city, and they’re going to burn me at the stake for this idiocy? Fuck it, let these blithering idiots burn it all down and then figure out how to dig themselves out of their hole. I don’t need this shit.”
It’s not that there is no news in the papers anymore. There is. But there is no longer a pretense of it being real, factual, accurate or complete, at least where the staff gets to walk out when an idea they feel endangers them, violates their sacred words or challenges their binary belief of good and evil. If “buildings matter, too,” was so traumatizing, so horrific that it cost the “top editor” his job, how the hell can a newspaper possibly have a headline that “All Cops Aren’t Literally Hitler”? But they’re not.
Update: Who could have seen this plot twist coming?
The @nytimes announced today that James Bennet, Editorial Page Editor since May 2016, is resigning effective immediately. Katie Kingsbury, who joined The Times in 2017, has been named as acting Editorial Page Editor through the November election. https://t.co/84QX4OrrcG
— NYTimes Communications (@NYTimesPR) June 7, 2020