Catholic League president Bill Donohue comments on why the New York Times changed its policy on obscenities:
In the first paragraph of today’s lead front-page story in the New York Times, it says that President Trump referred to “people from Haiti and some nations in Africa” as “s***hole countries.” Note: the asterisks are mine—the Times spelled the word in full.
The president says he did not use this term but that is irrelevant to my point: the newspaper changed its policy on publishing obscene words so its “readers would fully understand what the story was about.”
That, of course, is not true. No reader of what I just wrote is unable to “fully understand” what Trump allegedly said. My use of asterisks conveys the message without being convulsive. Worse, the Times refused to allow me to use asterisks to describe the obscenities that Dan Savage has used about Catholicism.
In a memo I received on February 11, 2016, an employee at the Times told me that an op-ed page ad I had submitted on the Disney/ABC show, “The Real O’Neals,” could not be published because it violated the paper’s obscenity policy.
The staffer wrote that “I have discussed this advertisement with the highest executives at The Times, and we are all in agreement that it cannot be published with these quotes. You can disagree with Mr. Savage’s hiring and say that his remarks show him as an obscene bigot, but we would rather not reprint his remarks, even with asterisks.”
I can only conclude that, given the reason cited today for publishing Trump’s alleged obscenity, the New York Times did not want its readers to “fully understand” what Savage said about Catholicism. Anyone who can’t figure out why is hopelessly partisan.
Contact the New York Times: email@example.com