Opinions, editorials too subjective

Tattle Me Shrews, Staff Infection

Opinion pieces published by journalism outlets are like the last 0.1 percent of bacteria that Purell does not kill. Editorials are bastions of belief that stain the purity of any newspaper with an unwillingness to let the cold hard facts silence the shaky ideas that are opinions. News must stand on its own, and those who wish to criticize administrators or politicians must first earn their own soapbox. At WSN, opinions have been allowed to live on, snatching credibility from the real journalists.

It has become nearly impossible for anyone to take the rest of the paper seriously with the opinion pieces mixed in. These subjective scoundrels need to be cordoned off, distinguished from the rest of the group. A purely objective article cannot exist in peace when there is subjectivity lurking on the next page — it is inhumane. WSN can try to cover its trail with their new online disclaimer that reminds us “opinions expressed on the editorial pages are not necessarily those of WSN, and the publication of opinions is not an endorsement of them,” but faithful readers know that these opinionated writers are whispering into the ear of the real journalists, infecting their facts with some feeling.

Online commenters have finally spoken out against these evildoers that dare to call themselves journalists. These brave souls risked life and limb commenting on these pieces, pointing out what everybody else was too scared to say: “I’m honestly appalled that this one-sided approach can be presented in my school’s own newspaper, even as an opinion piece,” said one commenter, responding to an article in support of Israel. Anonymous was right, what gives a school newspaper the right to give a platform to a student’s opinion? Non-universally held beliefs should not be verbalized, let alone given access to WSN’s
massive readership.

Another commenter, Sam, felt similarly. Responding, to an Editorial Board piece he wrote, “This article is nuts . . .  What happened to objective reporting?” Sam is dead on. People with opinions are just cherry-picking facts from the real story and convoluting the truth. Nothing can be fully explained in 450 words, and thus nothing should be. All opinion pieces do is try to sway people’s beliefs in one direction or another by stringing facts together willy-nilly. Facts are not macaroni on a preschooler’s bespoke necklace, they cannot be strung together like that. It is criminal.

Newspapers have to purify their content in order to annihilate these opinions. WSN will not be taken seriously until it realizes that opinions are ruining real stories. Keep to the facts when writing articles, and people will not be swindled into seeing something from a new perspective. Do the math. Eliminate the opinion section. It is like the old quote says: “There is no such thing as subjective journalism.”

Opinions expressed on the editorial pages are not necessarily those of WSN, and our publication of opinions is not an endorsement of them.

A version of this article appeared in the Wednesday, April 1 print edition. Email Tattle Me Shrews at [email protected]