A Michigan Reader Says Journalists Learn Dishonesty In College


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10/08/06
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From: 

Robert Vollmerhausen [e-mail
him
]

Re: Joe Guzzardi`s Column:

Are Dishonest Journalists Inherently Dishonest?

Guzzardi`s article on the

(dis-) honesty of journalists
reminded me of an
experience from my

college days
.

In
1967-1968, I was a student at Wayne State University in
Detroit. In a journalism class, the

editor
of the Detroit News gave our class a
pep talk. His message was that the newspaper practiced
what he called interpretative
journalism”
.  As the editor explained to us: “The
public doesn`t want nor can it understand the facts. We
must explain to the public what the facts mean
."

Although I remained quiet, my thought was that once we
start “interpreting” facts it won`t be long
before we start “making” them.


Journalists
are and have been, to one degree or
another, dishonest for years.

They learned it in college.


Vollmerhausen, who served in Vietnam, is retired from
what he describes as “a varied career as soldier,
teacher, and technician.
” He graduated from Wayne
State University in 1967 and was present for the Detroit
riots in 1967.