July 26, 2012 in Letters, Opinion

Put judgment in context


Recently, there have appeared in The Spokesman-Review a number of letters to the editor complaining about the publication of political cartoons by Michael Ramirez. Making our president look ugly, ridiculous, stupid, evil, etc., have been put forth as reasons to curb publication. I think these criticisms, true or not, miss the point.

While the point of public journalism, The Fourth Estate, is to inform, educate and entertain, being a product of mortals, there is no way this can be done without the intentional or unintentional effects of bias. An attempt to achieve total even-handedness or please everyone is not only impossible; it leads to the abrogation of the purposes of journalism, a morass of negativity. A positive stand must be taken and elucidated.

Only from the point of view of such a stance are there legitimate grounds for the exclusion of socially destructive, irredeemable, and conscious-lowering material such as the work of Ramirez.

Peter Grossman


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