Saturday, January 28, 2012

I wouldn't be a very popular reporter ...

Moore County boy hit by truck: 'God saved me' :: WRAL.com:


Slayton Maness via WRAL.com
A 9-year-old Moore County boy who spent more than two weeks in a coma and suffered two broken ribs and a fractured neck, pelvis and ankle is recovering at home, nearly three months after a truck hit and nearly killed him at his bus stop.
Or, maybe I couldn't be an editor. Either way, I couldn't publish a story with that headline without including some other details in the story, like the names of the doctors that actually contributed towards saving his life. I don't begrudge the Manesses their faith; it's just that, reading the article and not sharing that faith, I perceive (perhaps crankily?) an implied agreement on the part of the news outlet that something miraculous has happened.

Look, miracles happen every day, when you define miracles as things that had long odds of turning out the way they did. What happened here was clearly not a miracle or a case of a supernatural being intervening to save a child. His mother was there to perform CPR, he was rushed to a hospital where he received medical care. Give credit where credit's due.

The headline easily could have been written, "Family praises God for hitting young boy with truck at bus stop, nearly killing him, and forcing him to endure months of recovery instead of instantly healing him, as a deity easily could."

I see the eye-rolling out there, "why gripe about it?" I imagine you asking. "The family believes a magical being saved their child and the newspaper reported what they believe, let it go." Fair enough. WRAL didn't come out and say this was a miracle, and they didn't leave out how he received medical care.

You tell me, am I being tetchy? Do you see a bias in the reporting of the story? Is WRAL pandering to the religious mindset here?

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