12:36 pm February 3, 2012, by AJC Opinion
AJC Public Editor Shawn McIntosh will discuss blog commenting policies for ajc.com.
February 4th, 201211:49 am
So I decided to read the AJC Vents, a section of the paper that used to be reserved for witty comments about current events. But I came across this stomach-churning vent, in print “Please explain how public schools are supposed to teach those unwilling to learn anything but how to sling drugs and steal.” As someone who has lived in Georgia almost all of my life, I am not surprised that some people have such an opinion and that others would take the time to give it a “thumbs up”. However, I am absolutely disgusted that the Atlanta Journal Constitution, our major news outlet, would print this trash in 20-freaking-12. Where is the discretion? Where is the sense of responsibility? Race relations have become so strained over the last few years especially since the internet allows people to anonymously post any garbage that comes to mind without repercussions. Beyond that, we have political parties which exacerbate, or even create, issues along racial lines which confuse the public and break down our communities. In the last few years, I have considered moving more than ever. But recently, I decided that I would stay and work against these very evil forces.
Someone will certainly say that this vent said nothing of race. Well let’s play devil’s advocate, also known as entertaining stupid or enabling bigotry. The poster is directing this comment at a specific group which they believe to be homogenous, not to mention intellectually and morally void. Whether that person is talking about Blacks, Hispanics, or (for the sake of argument) Whites – this is the essence of racism. If they are referring to a socioeconomic class of people, it is classist. It’s some kind of ignorant, how about that? But the AJC chose to ruin my Saturday morning breakfast and disrespect my 50 cents by putting this mess in print, which is irresponsible – even for the sake of getting a rise out of a few readers. By printing this, you supported the dissemination of hatred, AJC. And in fuming silently or only on Facebook, I would be doing the same. Most Georgians I know reject this line of thinking and it would serve you well to get your act together.
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