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August 4, 2005
AP Editorializing Through Headlines Again

The Associated Press has returned once again to its bad habit of editorializing with headlines that have no substantion in the story. CQ reader Retired Military sends this latest example of the abuse, topping a story about combat losses for sons of Ohio. Titled "Ohio Families Fed Up With Loss of Marines," nothing in the story offers any such sentiment:

Rosemary Palmer and her husband were making plans to attend memorial services for six Marine reservists killed earlier this week five of them from the same battalion as her son, Lance Cpl. Edward Schroeder when two uniformed servicemen came down her street. ...

For relatives of those in the 3rd Battalion, 25th Marines, there has been a sudden spike in such grim visits from uniformed servicemen.

Schroeder, 23, of Cleveland, and 13 more Marines from the Ohio-based battalion were killed Wednesday along with a civilian interpreter in the deadliest roadside bombing in
Iraq.

The Marines' deaths, along with two others slain July 28, brought the battalion's toll to 21 in a week. Eleven of those were part of the same Columbus-based unit, Lima Company, that lost four Marines in a single day in May.

The only quote that comes close to meeting the "families fed up" allegation in the headline is from someone not related to the servicemen killed in action. The manager of a local donut shop "threw her hand over her heart" when informed of the fatalities and exclaimed, "I'm all for protection but this is getting a little bit ridiculous."

From the headline, one would expect that the AP had some protest to report, or at least more than a single quote from someone actually from the families mentioned in the story who protested the continuing involvement of the US in Iraq. Instead, we read about people who understandably express shock and sadness, but no expressions of protest or dissent.

The AP needs to get a new headline writer, new editors, or probably both.

UPDATE: AP did a little fixing of its headlines, I see. I have the cached copy here.

Jesse Taylor at Pandagon noticed it as well, and he has a GIF of the original headline.

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Posted by Ed Morrissey at August 4, 2005 7:19 AM

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Tracked on August 4, 2005 11:27 AM



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