It wasn’t all that long ago that the media had an editorial section to segregate opinion from news. There would still be plenty of bias injected into the news coverage, but straight editorializing wouldn’t normally show up in the news section.
The Obama administration, as with so many other leftist subversions of institutional norms, seemed to mark the dividing line when the media ceased to even pretend to be anything other than a leftist messaging operation. By the time the Trump administration came around, the divisions between news and editorializing were being self-righteously torn down. The entire paper was a series of political rants with one point of view.
So it’s about time for the New York Times to do away with op-eds. Other papers are sure to follow as they usually do the Times which will now call its op-eds, ‘guest essays’.
Kingsbury celebrated the long history of the Op-Ed page, recalling a quote from one her predecessors, former New York Times journalist John B. Oakes who helped create the opinion page:
“Diversity of opinion is the lifeblood of democracy. … The minute we begin to insist that everyone think the same way we think, our democratic way of life is in danger.”
“A half century ago, Times editors made a bet that readers would appreciate a wider range of opinion,” Kingsbury added. “We are making much the same bet, but at a time when the scales of opinion journalism can seem increasingly tilted against the free and the fair, the sober and honest. We work every day to correct that imbalance.”
While entirely missing the point of what Oakes was saying. And thereby demonstrating his point.
Katie Kingsbury got her job when James Bennet, who, for all his personal failings, actually oversaw a dynamic editorial page, was forced out for entertaining a “wider range of opinion”.
The range of opinion has now narrowed sharply.
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