Late but Welcome

From Howard Kurtz comes a newspaper “correction” I found oddly touching:

Kentucky’s Lexington Herald-Leader kicked off a self-examination this way:

“CLARIFICATION: It has come to the editor’s attention that the Herald-Leader neglected to cover the civil rights movement. We regret the omission.”

The paper published a long July 4 mea culpa, acknowledging that it deliberately played down the civil rights protests of the 1960s. When arrests forced a story onto Page 1, it was done in terse, police-report fashion. And events in the black community were usually relegated to a column called Colored News.

“It was a standing order that an effort at a dining room or restaurant or march would not get Page One coverage, that it would go inside,” former editor Don Mills was quoted as saying. “The management’s view was that the less publicity it got, the quicker the problem would go away.”

Managing Editor Tom Eblen says the project was inspired by a speech by former editor John Carroll, who now runs the Los Angeles Times, and a reporter who found few clips while doing research for the 50th anniversary of the Supreme Court’s school desegregation ruling.

Reader reaction has been “very positive,” Eblen says, especially among African Americans. Readers appreciate “the fact that we acknowledged it wasn’t covered very well and took an honest look at why that was.”


Kurtz didn’t provide a link to the story, but I dug it up for you.



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