Backpedaling and defensive

Backpedaling and defensive

The Boston Herald is sticking by its story that Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia made an “obscene gesture” after the Red Mass in Boston over the weekend, even though everybody agrees that it was not obscene, but that it’s generally regarded as a gesture of contempt. The Herald has created a tempest in a teapot.

Their cross-town competitors at the Boston Globe have joined in by saying that the Herald is full of it.

Looks like the Herald reporter, Laurel Sweet, thought she had a good story that would get national play by embarrassing Scalia. Yes, it got national play, but all it did was embarrass Sweet and the Herald, making them look petty and provincial.

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Written by
Domenico Bettinelli
  • Pat Purcell, the owner of the Herald, should be ashamed.  So many of his female reporters and columnists are making a joke out of the newspaper.  Their competition is the Globe.  It should be a piece of cake to be more truthful than that newspaper…

  • I haven’t been following this story at all, but have a different concern from reading this post – why should even a mere “gesture of contempt” be tolerated from a supposedly impartial jurist?
    This, together with his recent comments about his son serving in Iraq and having pretty clear views as to just who is entitled to a court hearing and who isn’t, make me expect a bunch of recusals in future cases.  (Somehow I doubt it, though.)

  • Anonymous: That’s when the DC Red Mass is celebrated. Different dioceses do their own Red Masses.

    Michael: Why does a jurist have to be impartial about someone telling him he can’t practice his faith in public?

  • “A man giving his name as Mr. Pasiencier demonstrates hand gestures on Hanover St. yesterday.”

    The photo of the North End guy “demonstrating hand gestures” cracked me up…talk about the Herald’s desparation! wink

  • Ah yes, the ‘impartiality’ argument. Other synonyms would be ‘inclusiveness’, ‘diversity’ and ‘treating all people the same’.

    In my place of work (a newspaper – surprise!), management takes this to its logical conclusion: we are all responsible (except management, of course) for everyone’s missteps.

    If Joe screws up, a memo is sent out to all employees stating, basically: “We all have to do better…” When I questioned why all are being taken to task for Joe’s failings, I got the standard media management response: “We have to treat everybody the same!”

    On its face this sounds very correct – equality and all that. But it is absolutely wrong! You don’t treat everybody ‘the same’ – you treat everybody equitably. Which is not the same (so to speak) thing at all.

    If Joe screws up, you talk to Joe – not to Tom, Dick and Harry who didn’t screw up. But of course what this points up is management’s gutless failure to take their responsibilities seriously. We are all guilty. We are all responsible. And, of course, if we are all responsible – then no one is responsible.

    Except perhaps President Bush – he’s responsible for everything… Sheesh!