Saturday, March 05, 2005

PUFF PIECE

The Sacramento Bee ran a cover page story written by Bee writer Sam Stanton on March 4 about arson suspect Ryan Lewis. Ryan is accused of taking part in the fire bomb attacks on various building developments in Placer County. The piece drips with sympathy for Ryan while describing his background. The agenda of this story, I believe, is revealed in the closing lines of the story: "Our biggest concern is that this not be spun out of control. That would be a travesty of justice."

Curious. The story described a kid who went from model citizen to firebombing in a very short period of time. Should people be concerned if firebombing buildings is the pinnacle of his criminal life or the very beginning. I think so. Journalist Stanton should have provided much more perspective in this story rather than specifically trying to cultivate sympathy for Ryan.

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