Friday, November 04, 2005

CBS' Public Eye Spanks Drudge

If you're not reading the CBS Public Eye, an effort devoted to providing more transparency at CBS News and other media outlets, you're missing out on some very interesting analyses, like this one. Don't you just love it when Matt Drudge is taken to task for his hyperbole? I do and wish there were more criticism like this.

[Update: I just want to remind readers that everything posted below is from the CBS Public Eye.]

From the Public Eye:

>The Drudge Report today is featuring some comments made by CBS’ Andy Rooney on the “Imus” program this morning and it's getting some traction in the blogosphere. Here’s the one sentence that Drudge puts on his site:

>“I have a problem with the term African American ... The word negro is a perfectly good word. There is nothing wrong with that.”

>That happens to be an incorrect quote, one that serves Drudge’s need for hype.

>[...] The discussion began as host Don Imus was referencing a frequent guest, Congressman Harold Ford Jr. (D-TN) and noted that Ford is African-American. Here’s the transcript:

>Rooney: “I object every time I hear the words ‘African-American,’ you know? I don’t know why we have gotten caught with that.”

>Imus: “Yeah, I don’t either.”

>Rooney: “I mean, am I an ‘Irish-American?’”

>Imus: “What should I say, just ‘black’ right?”

>Rooney: “Well, I don’t think there’s anything wrong with ‘black.’ Growing up, it’s funny how words get to be opprobrious. The word ‘negro,’ perfectly good word. It’s a strong word and a good word. I don’t see anything wrong with that. Mostly it’s not necessary to identify anyone by skin color. But I don’t care for ‘African-American.’”

>Imus: “I won’t use it anymore.”

>Drudge makes no comments, simply leaves snippets of the exchange hanging out there at the top of the page to give his many visitors an inaccurate impression of Rooney’s meaning. [...]

>His use of the word “negro” is what is striking many the wrong way, but he’s arguing for the strength of the word and remarking on the negative connotation it carries. He’s not advocating its return to the American lexicon.

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