NYT changes headline reading ‘not everyone wants to hear about Biden’s grief over Beau’

NYT changes headline reading ‘not everyone wants to hear about Biden’s grief over Beau’
Biden checking watch during solemn ceremony for 13 Marines killed on his watch

One of the stories in this morning’s Web Crawler excerpts a New York Times article originally titled “Biden, still grieving his son Beau, finds that not everyone wants to hear about it.” The focus of the story is the thirteen families of service members who died in Afghanistan after a suicide bomb was detonated. When the president met with them at Dover Air Force Base last week, the pain of their loss was still fresh, their emotions still raw. Instead of offering words of solace and comfort and then moving on to the next family, Biden intruded his son Beau’s name into his exchange with Mark Schmitz, one of the parents.

As the Washington Post reported:

Schmitz did not want to hear about Beau, he wanted to talk about [his own son] Jared. Eventually, the parents took out a photo to show to Biden. “I said, ‘Don’t you ever forget that name. Don’t you ever forget that face. Don’t you ever forget the names of the other 12,’” Schmitz said. “ ‘And take some time to learn their stories.’”

The Times’s own report touched on that angle, including a quote by Wall Street Journal columnist Bill McGurn, who wrote in a Journal op-ed, “Mr. Biden is not a Gold Star father and should stop playing one on TV.”

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The issue of shoehorning his son’s name into conversations with individuals who lost loved ones is one that LU has addressed. The president exploited his son’s death once again in his recent interview with George Stephanopoulous interview, falsely implying as he has done often that Beau died in combat. In truth, Beau Biden died of brain cancer.

My purpose in writing this post is not to diminish the genuine enduring grief Joe Biden must feel over his loss. Rather, it is to suggest, as the Times, Post, and Wall Street Journal severally have, that there’s a time and place.

There was nothing in principle wrong or malicious about the Times’s headline. But under pressure from the likes of far-left cretins like Mediaite’s Tommy Christopher, the paper felt impelled to revise the title to something that fails to capture the thrust of the article. That’s known as bad journalism.

Howard Portnoy

Howard Portnoy

Howard Portnoy has written for The Blaze, HotAir, NewsBusters, Weasel Zippers, Conservative Firing Line, RedCounty, and New York’s Daily News. He has one published novel, Hot Rain, (G. P. Putnam’s Sons), and has been a guest on Radio Vice Online with Jim Vicevich, The Alana Burke Show, Smart Life with Dr. Gina, and The George Espenlaub Show.


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