Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Did the reporter miss something big?

WASHINGTON - NOVEMBER 05:  Thousands of people...Image by Getty Images via Daylife

On Nov. 5, The Record ran a front-page story on a protest by 10,000 people in Washington over health-care reform. Some of the protesters confronted Rep. Steve Rothman, who was leaning toward voting for the measure, the newspaper's crack Washington correspondent, Herb Jackson, reported.

Jackson wrote that among the signs he saw was one with the words, "No socialism."

But I had to watch "The Daily Show" to find out that some of the protesters were sick crackpots who equated health-care reform with the Holocaust. One of the signs shown on Comedy Central was an extremely large photo of a pile of bodies at a German death camp under the words, "National Socialist Health Care, Dachau, Germany, 1945."

Did The Record's reporter only cover the confrontation between Rothman and residents of his district? Did Herb Jackson see the death camp photo sign and not report it? Were The Record's editors concerned showing the photo would reveal the protesters for the sickos they are and that readers might question the sensational Page 1 play of the story? Has The Record -- which has lost many readers in recent years -- made any attempt during the long health-care reform debate to separate fact from the lies, myths and frightening distortions we've all heard or is it just trying to sell newspapers?

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