Unsurprisingly the bold front page headline of the Saturday December 15, 2012 Milwaukee Journal Sentinel was the lede for their story on the massacre in the elementary school in Connecticut. And they quoted from President Obama’s speech from the White House yesterday. BUT they changed the whole meaning of his words by editing the quote…shortening the quote…and it’s a significant difference in content.
The MJS lede is ‘HEARTS ARE BROKEN’. The President’s quote is ‘OUR HEARTS ARE BROKEN TODAY…’. MJS uses that quote later in the body of the story (well except they left the ellipses out). But those two similar quotes mean entirely different things. The headline quote doesn’t come near to conveying the way the nation feels today…not by a long shot. So shame on MJS for projecting a very different message than what was meant and what is being felt.
And to compound the matter…MJS ended the story with a final quote from the President’s speech and once again truncated it without notice and again conflicted the meaning and sentiment in the quote. Here it is and the portion in italics is the portion omitted:
“Among the fallen were also teachers, men and women who devoted their lives to helping our children fulfill their dreams”
And it is after all the American Dream these children lost…no not just the victims of the shooting who paid with their lives…but the survivors who will never ever forget December 14th…who can never ever feel safe at school again…who may never truly heal.