9/10/2005

Get the story right

Having read an article of Newton Emerson's during the week and thought it worthy of comment, I am glad to see it republished on Newshound. Now Newton is an extermely talented and witty writer but in his attempt to criticise all which he dislikes about politics in the north, he often deliberately misinterprets facts. This article is one such occasion.

In it, Newton condemns what he sees as a Sinn Féin councillor's ill judged reaction to disturbances in Cushendall and attempts to make a wider point about Sinn Féin's commitment to law and order. I have two problems. Firstly Newton scornfully rejects Mr McMullan's assertion that a yellow lad was attacked while out to buy chips. Mr. Emerson goes on to use the phrase as a euphemism for other sorts of activities. But please tell me Newton, how do you know that wasn't exactly what the person was doing?!

Furthermore, Newton goes on to deride the Community Restorative Justice schemes as having the objective of "putting people in hospital". Lies of this order cannot be let slide. Mr. Emerson obviously knows nothing about the CRJ schemes if this is what he thinks they are about. CRJ has as its purpose the wish to resolve conflicts in communities peacefully and without the need for any hospital visits. It seems Mr. Emerson is willing to believe any anti-Republican propaganda in order to make his cheap shots. I wonder would he be willing to actually spend time examing how CRJ works so that he could be rid of his current misconceptions. Shabby journalism from a man who is capable of better.

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