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Sunday, July 17, 2011
Where is the father, the pastor, the counselor?
I plowed through Mike Kelly's cliches on Page 1 today, his unanswered questions and his wasted paragraphs on how Damian Williams got from Teaneck to Bound Brook on the day he was shot dead, and I scanned the full page of text and photos on A-6, the continuation page.
The Record columnist spent weeks "investigating" Williams' life after the 24-year-old was killed on March 19, but he doesn't say a word about the man's father, the family's pastor or school counselors.
Kelly show here, as he has many times before, that he feels more comfortable dealing with cops, prosecutors and coaches than exploring the emotional and psychological details of family life.
Hey, Editor Francis Scandale, do you read any of the Page 1 stories before they're published or do you just go by faith?
The columnist also shows that he gets no assignment editing before his stuff is sent over to the news layout desk and then the copy desk for headlines and photo captions.
And why does Kelly allow the news editors to sandbag him with that ridiculous photo, showing a smile that carries all the sincerity of a used-car salesman?
More Christie pain
At least readers have a lead A-1 story from Staff Writer Lindy Washburn detailing the pain awaiting low-income Medicaid patients under Governor Christie's mean-spirited budget.
On the front of head Assignment Editor Deirdre Sykes' Local section, her hand-picked Road Warrior columnist, John Cichowski, has his fourth straight piece on the Motor Vehicle Commission in five days.
No forced busing
NJ Transit's trains and buses bump and grind along, raising hundreds of complaints from commuters, and Cichowski is unmoved. I'm not leaving the office, he mutters. I'm not leaving the office.
What a coward Columnist Charles Stile is, putting the words "mean-spirited" in quotes to describe Christie's line-item vetoes of Democratic spending.
How many times did he and other reporters use the Christie-sanctioned words "reform agenda" without quotes in his stories and columns on the governor's budget in recent months?
A bloody butcher
On the Better Living front, Restaurant Reviewer and Columnist Elisa Ung profiles Pat LaFrieda III, "New York's most famous butcher," who is "the guy behind the country's most acclaimed steaks and burgers" and who is "held in high regard by so many top chefs ...."
But when you read on you find out 75% of the beef LaFrieda sells is raised with antibiotics. Eat too much of that and the antibiotics your doctor prescribes won't work.
Ung doesn't even mention whether the cattle are fed animal by-products -- kitchen scraps and bits of dead animals.
However, she's careful to say all the beef is "humanely raised."
Yeah, Ung, that's right up to the instant -- just inside the slaughterhouse door -- when a bolt is shot into the animal's brain to kill it and it's hoisted by its rear legs for skinning and dismembering.
He's died in '01
Also on the Better Living front today, Staff Writer Jim Beckerman reports the paper's former shopping blogger is to shoppers "what Dale Earnhardt Sr. is to stock car racing. A champ."
The elder Earnhardt died in a crash during the Daytona 500 in 2001, but there are plenty of stock-car champs who are still around, Beckerman. Try Jimmie Johnson next time.