LETTER: Nelson Star opinion mislabelled as news

From reader Scott Burrows....

After reading yet another of your page three editorials mislabelled as News, I’m sharing a slice of advice given to me as a young reporter by an old salt at the Vancouver Province: “A good editor has to be tougher and smarter and fairer than his reporter.”

It’s good advice, no matter if you toil for a rag that steers right of centre, or a mile left, as is the case with our little Star, a bona fide hotbed of advocacy journalism, which is of course journalism dressed up and sold as something more than what it really is, which is lazy reporting compounded by indifferent editing in a pattern of obvious bias.

Wednesday’s piece quotes at length several of the protesters who recently gathered on Baker Street to complain about the Kinder Morgan pipeline expansion and sign a petition circulated by NDP MLA Michelle Mungall, who gets eight of the 26 column inches to tout her brand and malign a political foe in Christy Clark.

Here’s the rub: If you want to attack conservative values by passing the megaphone to a special interest group, go ahead, but don’t play dumb and tag it News.

Real news requires an opposing viewpoint of equal weight, or at least an effort to contact somebody willing to provide one; without a counter element the reader is left with nothing but a self-serving, one-sided view of a complex issue (witness Will Johnson’s effort of July 21, in which our local citizens of colour were invited to scold their white neighbours for our “hatred” and “hostility” as part of a “dialogue on race” with no input from the hateful, hostile white folk, mind you; why complicate the narrative?)

For the record, I make my living in the traditional resource sector and I support the Kinder Morgan expansion, as do a great number of rational, responsible, hard-working Canadians, many of whom have settled in the Kootenays and together have poured millions of dollars into local economies and federal coffers, which, in turn, enable the rainbow of charitable organs and social welfare programs that prevail in these parts.

That said, I’m unoffended by those who stand opposed, and tolerant of their views.

My beef is with the Star.

If it’s news, call it news. If it isn’t, don’t.

To do so is to assume to know better than your readers, and that makes you look dumb.

Scott Burrows

Nelson

Just Posted

BREAKING: Ammonia leak shuts down Nelson Curling Club

It’s not yet clear when the leak was detected

Four points for Fawcett as Leafs win 7th straight

Nelson edged the Fernie Ghostriders 4-3

What’s Up: Things to see and do on Family Day

There’s plenty of fun to be had across the West Kootenay this coming long weekend!

Seven Nelson rec projects granted Columbia Basin Trust funding

Nelson’s baseball and tennis clubs were the big winners

Sanchez leads Leafs to 6th straight win

Nelson held off Spokane 3-2 on Friday

B.C. students win Great Waters Challenge video contest

Video, mural and song about saving the salmon claims the top prize

Pavelski’s 31st goal helps Sharks top Canucks 3-2

Vancouver one point out of second NHL wild-card spot

East Kootenay illicit drug overdose deaths lowest in B.C.

Local expert credits harm reduction efforts; declares support for legalization of opioids

Eight cases of measles confirmed in Vancouver outbreak

Coastal Health official say the cases stem from the French-language Ecole Jules Verne Secondary

Ontario police field complaints over Amber Alert for missing girl, 11, found dead

Some said the Amber Alert issued late Thursday for Riya Rajkumar disrupted their sleep

Former B.C. premier Gordon Campbell accused of sexual touching

Accuser went to police, interviewed by Britian’s Daily Telegraph

B.C. couple attacked with acid, slashed with knife in Vietnam

Warning, graphic images: Man has burns on 80 per cent of his body, slashed with knife

Northern B.C. First Nation clan says ancient tools found at pipeline work site

Archeologists from the Smithsonian Institute estimate one of the stones found dates back up to 3500 years

Names keep adding to vaccine petition started by B.C. mom

Maple Ridge mom started campaign to make vaccination a condition of attending school

Most Read