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Tuesday, July 26, 2005

A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to Credibility (Updated)

Last week, one of my posts was linked by Samantha Henig on the Columbia Journalism Review Daily blog, which would have been nice if my post hadn’t been utterly mischaracterized by Henig. See, she linked to a post that discussed teaching black American history as a separate class from the rest of American history, but her entire post was centered around bloggers “foaming at the mouth” about Ebonics--and she cast me in with that same group.

Context?

But the correctional didn’t come soon enough. We’re not the only ones who caught wind of the July 17 piece, and (not surprisingly) not everyone out there took the time to realize the true thrust of the article—namely, that only one woman was saying Ebonics should be included in the program. Bloggers (and most likely local readers of the paper) were quickly foaming at the mouth.

So for all of the writers for local newspapers who think their articles won’t make an impact, check out the furor sparked by one misleading piece in the San Bernadino County Sun: furor, furor, furor, furor, and more furor.

ResurrectionSong was linked as “more furor.”

I emailed Henig last week, clarifying that my post did not once mention Ebonics and was related to the greater commentary only because the same article that I referenced was referenced by quite a few others. In fact, I first found the article linked on Michelle Malkin’s site but was less interested in the Ebonics story than I was the (to me) atrocious idea of treating black American history as somehow separate from American history.

As of this morning, I’ve neither heard from Henig nor seen a correction on CJR Daily. I’ll be generous and assume that she didn’t receive the email, but that doesn’t change the larger, more humorous, fact that her post was about a misleading article in the San Bernadino County Sun. Humorous, of course, because she must not have even bothered to read my post, instead relying on the fact that it was linked by a few of the bloggers who were writing about the Ebonics issue (links that I reciprocated as I noticed them, still never mentioning Ebonics).

I’m personally happy that Ebonics won’t be a part of the program discussed in that original article, but that neither changes my opinion on splintering up American history by racial groupings nor makes my post any more about Ebonics than it was before.

Update: Ms. Henig has responded and responded quite well. Well enough, in fact, that I wish I had waited another day to have written this post.

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