Today, I cancelled my subscription to the Washington Post. While I have had a long problem with the Post’s lack of independence in journalism, I kept my subscription because of its variety and local topics. However, its occasional left-leaning slant boiled over today as I read the front page article of a high school senior’s antics in 1965. The article was about the likely Republican presidential candidate’s high school pranks. While it included several disputed points as if they were fact and although we know very little about the current president’s past, I am not sure that the shenanigans of an adolescent nearly 50 years ago matters at all. Furthermore, I can’t image that it would make the Style section, much less Page A1.
The real problem with the article is that it is such a departure from the mainstream thinking that it reeks of manipulation. The placement, tone and coordinated pairing articles on the same page appear to support a political objective and candidate. Is it a mere coincidence that the article’s first paragraph suggests the “troubling incident” was linked to a student’s sexual orientation, and then another article (immediately to the left on page 1) discusses the President’s evolution on gay marriage? A look at page 2 confirms the coordination with an article suggesting that the Republican candidate is a bully. Whatever happened to the real news — the economy, the falloff in job creation, workers leaving the job market, the deficit, and so on.
Was this biased reported an isolated incident? No, it is happening at an increasing rate and at other newspapers too. The placement, tone and coordination of the articles should require a “paid for” disclaimer – but there is none to be found. As a result, I could finally read no more. So, like so many others before me, today I cancelled my subscription to the Washington Post.