Chris Kluwe betrayed: Punter quits writing for PiPress following paper's Vote Yes editorial
Kluwe is taking his blogging elsewhere after the PiPress came out in favor of the marriage amendment.
In recent weeks, Vikings punter Chris Kluwe toned himself down and had been blogging for the Pioneer Press, but that relationship abruptly came to an end Saturday when the Twin Cities' right-leaning daily published a Vote Yes editorial.
Though the PiPress ostensibly isn't publishing political endorsements this campaign season, its "Minnesota marriage amendment" editorial essentially attempts to knock down a series of Vote No arguments, leaving the reader with the impression that "marriage properly understood is an institution to promote and protect the stability of a biological family unit -- mother, father and their children" is the argument that best withstands intellectual scrutiny.
First, here are excerpts from the PiPress' editorial:
The argument that the amendment is unnecessary because the current law is not and will not be at risk is misguided, as evidenced by Iowa, where the state supreme court has already overruled the legislature's definition of marriage...
Some argue that as a practical matter there seems to be less interest by same-sex partners in actually being married than in redefining what marriage is. In Iowa, for instance, Wikipedia reports, that only 815 same-sex couples married in the first year after legalization....["Wikipedia reports"? Since when does Wikipedia report anything?]...
The business climate argument is not to be dismissed, but supporters of traditional marriage would say that it's an issue that is bigger than economics, and that in any event it's hard to imagine companies deciding on Minnesota rather than North Carolina based on the constitutional status of marriage...
Love may be love, but even now there are any number of prohibitions around marriage between consenting (heterosexual) adults...
[S]upporters of traditional marriage are not wrong to point out that religious groups who have refused to make their facilities available for same-sex couples have lost their state tax exemption and that religious groups have been forced to close their charitable adoption agencies as a result of having to choose between fulfilling their social mission and acquiescing to a new definition of marriage. And that whenever schools educate children about marriage they will have no choice but to teach it as a genderless institution...
So now it is up to you the voter to decide what is the best course...
Kluwe took to Twitter and offered up this response to the
Very disappointed in @PioneerPress editorial... Plessy v. Ferguson obviously doesn't mean what it used to... You can say you're not taking a side one way or the other all you want, but if you print that in the editorial section you just took a side.
Sent my email to the @PioneerPress informing them I will no longer contribute to their blog network. It will be my last post on the site. I will not be associated with any organization that tries to pull some bullshit like that. Have the strength of your convictions...
My main issue with the Pioneer Press editorial is this: It's a lie. I have no problem with them taking a position I disagree with. What concerns me is them presenting a completely biased piece (word choice, examples used, conclusions) as a neutral position. That's not only irresponsible journalism, it's massively hypocritical. Have the courage of your convictions. Attach your name to what you believe in. Don't try to confuse people through obfuscation and selected presentation of arguments. It ruins discussion, and you should be ashamed. I will not abide lying. A stable society has to be built on a foundation of trust, and that editorial just eroded some of it away.
Pioneer Press business reporter Tom Webb and managing editor Chris Clonts also took to Twitter to make clear that the Vote Yes editorial in no way reflects their views or the views of other journalists on staff:
The Pioneer Press I know values fairness and honesty. Its marriage editorial slights those values, and is unworthy of a fine newspaper.-- Tom Webb (@TomWebbMN) November 3, 2012
I understand reaction to today's @pioneerpress marriage editorial. Please know it in no way represents the newsroom or indiv. journalists.-- Chris Clonts (@CClonts) November 3, 2012
The backlash the editorial generated from Kluwe, on social media, and inside the newsroom prompted PiPress Editor Mike Burbach to publish an editorial-about-the-editorial last night where he essentially (non-)apologizes for deceptively publishing Vote Yes propaganda under the guise of an impartial piece on the Opinion Page, whatever that would be. Here's excerpts from "Regarding our editorial on Minnesota's proposed marriage amendment " :
[T]he piece was widely read as favoring the amendment, and many people considered our "not endorsing one way or another" line to be disingenuous at best. Clearly, we failed to deliver what we had meant to. And it's easy enough to see why people read the editorial as favoring the arguments for the amendment...
[W]e should have made our respect for the anti-amendment arguments more evident.
A word about the difference between our Opinion Page and our newsroom: No journalists from the newsroom, other than me, have anything to do with the editorial opinion of the Pioneer Press. The mission of the people in our newsroom is to report the news from our communities fairly and impartially, and they are committed to that mission.
-- Hat-tip: David Brauer --
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