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Friday, February 24, 2006

The Rest Of The Story

I know the reporters at Collegiate Times, Virginia Tech's student newspaper, are still in apprentice mode. So they shouldn't be judged too harshly when one of them files a report that misses half the story. And I understand that it is Black History Month so we are supposed to be deferential (I just finished watching a news segment on a local Greensboro TV channel about a 74-year old black school bus driver ...?)

Fine.

But I think the Times could have been more accurate in its description of one of Tech's recent guest speakers. Professor Angela Davis was on campus to talk about Martin Luther King and to trash George Bush. Here's how her biography is presented by the reporter:
Activist Davis speaks about Black History Month
Saira Haider, News Assistant


Professor, social activist and third-party vice-presidential nominee Angela Davis ... (link)
By God, a true American hero. Well, not exactly. Angela is actually an avowed marxist and the "third-party" she represented in both the 1980 and 1984 presidential elections was the Communist Party USA.

A minor point not worth mentioning, I suppose.

The fact that she was on the FBI's "Ten Most Wanted List" in the 1970's after it was discovered that a firearm she owned had been used to murder a California judge and three other innocent people and the fact that she had fled didn't seem to rise to the level of biographical information either. (link)

No. We get "professor, social activist and third-party vice-presidential nominee ..." like she is someone for whom we should offer respect, even admiration.

Angela Davis deserves our contempt and the denunciations she's been receiving for the last thirty years. And the editor at Collegiate Times needs to give its novice reporter a tutorial in Reporting 101.