Baum Blasts Times’ Temerity

Not to pick unduly on The New York Times, but its editorial of 11 January, referring to “the visceral evidence that the groups have made the country a far more dangerous place,” is beneath the dignity of a great newspaper. What, pray, is visceral evidence, and how does it trump actual evidence that the country is a far less dangerous place? Ditto Bob Herbert, who seems to have phoned in his column of the same day — “A Flood Tide of Murder,” from 1989 . . .

If we were serious about reducing killings, he writes, “we’d have to radically restrict the availability of guns” among other things. Well, we have reduced killings by a great deal, somehow by doing the exact opposite. Again, one doesn’t have make a causal argument, but to say that “no amount of killing  has prompted any remedial action” is simply a calumny. Lots of remedial action has been taken, and it’s worked. It just hasn’t involved radically restricting the availability of guns.

[Dan Baum is a respected author and TTAG commentator. Please visit his website so that we can convince him to cross-post here regularly.]


  1. avatar Ralph says:

    Criticizing the Gray Lady? Such a shonda. Dan, don’t take this personally, but I’m beginning to like you.

    1. avatar Brad Kozak says:

      At the risk of invoking Rush Limbaugh, “Ditto.”

  2. avatar mikeb302000 says:

    Dan, I know you’re a respected author and all, but that use of “calumny” doesn’t seem quite right. Just an observation.

    I’m sure you’ll get lots of support in criticizing the NYT around here. I happen to like what they have to say about guns.

    1. avatar Robert Farago says:

      Shouldn’t that be “for” criticizing?

    2. avatar TTACer says:

      plural cal·um·nies
      Definition of CALUMNY
      : a misrepresentation intended to harm another’s reputation
      : the act of uttering false charges or misrepresentations maliciously calculated to harm another’s reputation

      I guess it should have been calumnies?

      1. avatar mikeb302000 says:

        I don’t buy it guys. Are you into defensive mode?

        He said, “to say that “no amount of killing has prompted any remedial action” is simply a calumny.”

        In saying such a thing, the intention was to harm whom exactly?

        Instead of the 50-cent word, Dan should have simply said “false.”

  3. avatar 2yellowdogs says:

    Herbert has been phoning it in for so long, how can you tell any more?

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