By Jim Schutze
By Rachel Watts
By Lauren Drewes Daniels
By Anna Merlan
By Lee Escobedo
I know I'm just asking for trouble, but I can't help myself, so, sigh, here goes: Area Muslims' campaign against The Dallas Morning News' perceived bias against them is, to say the least, ridiculous. If you want to see just how absurd it is, go to the Web site they've set up--dallasNOTnews.com--that has received much press recently, including in this paper ("War of words," May 18). On the site, a litany of complaints are made against the News, all having to do with prejudice against Muslims. As proof, it offers a chart that reveals the "shocking statistics." To quote the Web site: "The Dallas Morning News trend can be more clearly seen by a numerical analysis. A search on their Web site for articles containing the terms 'extremist, extremism, radical, radicalism, terrorist, and terrorism' in direct connection with the terms 'Muslim' and 'Islamic' revealed startling and overwhelming bias against Muslims and Islam."
But what, exactly, is startling? The research is based on a few hundred stories, dating back to 1984, that contain those aforementioned terms--which is proof of something, just not Morning News bias. A quick search of the Lexis-Nexis electronic research library shows that most of the stories cited on dallasNOTnews.com are wire stories written by the Associated Press, The New York Times, and myriad other news organizations. The site also calls for the firing of "Public Enemy #1," investigative whiz Steve McGonigle, because of his recent reporting on a Muslim group. Sure, ax one of the best reporters the paper has. That ought to help.
Former Morning News movie critic Beth Pinsker, after a brief stint as a researcher for Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?, is now a staff writer for buzz-of-the-week Web site Inside.com...Star Fort Worth Star-Telegram reporter Tim Madigan just signed a deal to write a book about the 1921 Tulsa race riot...Gary McNamara has been named host of the 4-to-6 p.m. slot on WBAP-AM (820), replacing Chris Jackson...Adam McGill has resigned as editor of The Met to take a magazine gig with American Airlines publishing.